Epic-Linked Text Messages Enhance Patient Experience, Improve Outcomes at Community Health Network

Epic-Linked Text Messages Enhance Patient Experience, Improve Outcomes at Community Health Network

By changing a system architecture that had stopped patients' numbers from being filtered by cell carriers, the health system has been able to widen its outreach efforts. Thousands of patients of Indianapolis-based Community Health Network were missing critical updates from the health system. "The downstream implications of those missed messages are both immediately apparent and a little harder to grasp," noted Dr. Patrick McGill, chief analytics officer at Community Health Network. To make matters worse, the health system's text messaging vendor was not providing the type of reporting the provider organization needed to get at the meat of the problem – to understand why it was happening so the organization could take steps to address it.

Community Health Network had been working with vendor CipherHealth for some time in other areas of patient engagement – patient engagement, COVID screening, post-discharge callbacks and more – so it already was familiar with how the vendor operated as a company and how its technology had led to big engagement strides elsewhere in the provider organization. Between September 2021 and March 2022, Community Health Network successfully sent 3.91 million text messages out of the CipherHealth EHR Activation Gateway, with a delivery rate of 98%. "Importantly, the changes in system architecture that stopped patients' numbers from being filtered by cell carriers reduced blocked messages in a single month – February 2021 versus February 2022 – from 24,997 to two," McGill reported.




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