The US Oncology Network believes that technology powers healthcare quality and efficiency. In oncology, the smart application of technology can help physicians reduce errors, operate more efficiently, and improve access to proven life-saving therapies and cutting-edge research.
The US Oncology Network, through the support of McKesson Specialty Health, utilizes technologies that:
• Allow the safe and secure electronic storage of patient health information to avoid common problems associated with paper records
• Provide physicians and other clinicians remote access to health records at any time
• Enable point-of-care decision support to assist in the delivery of high-quality care
• Identify clinical trials appropriate for a specific patient’s fight against cancer
• Empower information sharing, collaboration and communication among oncologists
• Enable the benchmarking of pathways compliance and variation, as well as the measurement of a broad range of quality measures
• Support robust healthcare informatics and data analysis — including patient clinical outcomes measurement — that allow for the documentation of clinical quality
Oncology-Specific Electronic Health Record
iKnowMed™ is a cancer-specific electronic health record (EHR) developed by oncologists to meet the unique needs of oncology practices and cancer patients — including support for detailed cancer content, toxicity management and clinical trials. These features help enable the physician to select the most appropriate treatment for their patients.
iKnowMed is equipped with safety triggers that alert physicians when toxicity levels are high or when there is a possible drug conflict. It also serves as a decision-support tool at the point of care to help physicians by providing appropriate treatment options based on the specific diagnosis, stage and status of the patient.
iKnowMed can be customized with Level I Pathways to increase the quality of care and ensure that patients receive the right treatments at the right time. iKnowMed supports the research trials being conducted at practice sites so that physicians and patients know which trials may be appropriate. It takes into account trial eligibility criteria and the patient’s specific diagnosis, stage and status. Currently, more than 900 community-based oncologists and mid-level providers and thousands of staff actively use iKnowMed. Find more information on our electronic health record at the iKnowMed website.
As advocates of evidence-based medicine, we see the value of compliance, measurement and reporting. Our informatics capabilities allow physicians to measure outcomes and report on the quality of care they’re delivering. This information helps us continually refine and improve Level I Pathways. It also provides valuable data on the quality of care so that physicians and other providers can improve care results.
The Healthcare Informatics division has published dozens of studies in this area. For example, a joint study we conducted with Aetna, published in the January 2010 peer-reviewed Journal of Oncology Practice, found that the use of Level I Pathways for non-small cell lung cancer resulted in 35% lower costs with equivalent outcomes for patients.
The Oncology Portal
The Oncology Portal is a Web-based community that unites the more than 1,000 physicians in The US Oncology Network in real time. Participating physicians can employ the collective knowledge of The Network to handle rare cases, discuss new treatments, get expert insights from leaders in oncology sub-specialties, and learn about the latest developments in oncology. Learn how the Oncology Portal is uniting physicians across the network.