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Collecting Data to Help Improve Outcomes in a Cost Effective Way

October 15, 2019

By Julie Gould

randy messierRandy Messier, MS, PMCH CCE, medical technologist, recently sat down with First Report Managed Care to discuss his research, “Continuous Improvement of MS Care Quality and Outcomes: A Coach-Supported Quality Improvement Intervention and Readiness Assessment Approach for the MS Continuous Quality Improvement Collaborative.” He explained how how health care professionals can use simple tools to look at information and improve systems and processes of care.

To read more about the research, click here.

Please introduce yourself.

My name is Randy Messier. I'm a medical technologist with a master’s in science administration and a PCMH CCE. I'm currently involved as a Co‑Investigator in research looking at how we can improve the processes of care and systems of care for people with multiple sclerosis.

This research program uses a step wedge design. We're working with four different MS clinics to establish benchmarks of care and best practices and at the same time providing quality improvement coach support, which is what I'm doing within the program, to help them use that data to improve the systems and processes of care within their clinic.

In world of MS care, there are no agreed upon benchmarks or best practices that are looked at across systems of care. That's our goal, is to be able to provide that information to help improve the best system of care for people with MS across the continuum of care.

Can you highlight the importance of the research findings presented?

The research findings to date have really shown that by collecting clinical data and patient‑reported outcomes data, and working with the teams on developing improvement efforts, we can make quick changes in a very cost‑effective way utilizing the team themselves within that clinic.

It's always interesting to me that when you provide information to groups and provide them with some simple skills on how to evaluate or make changes, they go with it. They start owning the process because it's their data, it's their system, and they're making their changes for the people that they care most about, and those are their patients. We've had some great successes within a short period of time.

What do you hope health care professionals can take away from your study?

The one thing I hope they take away from this research is that it does not need to be complex. We can really, in a very simple way, provide simple tools to highly educated people, to look at information and improve systems and processes of care and make it part of what they do and stop looking at it as something that's piled on top of everything else that they do every day.

Everyone in health care is burned out, overworked, and then when we talk about doing QI, they look at it as, "One more thing they have to do."

If we can find tools and methods like this to provide them information just by collecting data, from EHR’s, and from patient reported outcomes and provide them tools to improve the work while they do the work, it can lower their burden. When they start seeing the positive outcomes, it really stimulates them to continue that work as part of what they do.

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