As the DPC market has matured, off-the-shelf software, engineered for the unique requirements of DPC, has emerged. Not only is this lowering the cost to obtain functional software, but it is opening up new means of delivering care. As traditional practices evolve to accountable models, these requirements will be the same. DPC practices simply are the early adopters. The following are facets of the technology changes and their implications on DPC:
Cloud-based Software-as-a-Service: As low overhead operations, DPC practices not only demand the price advantages that come with cloud-based services, they want the simplicity of not having to set up and maintain server software as well as having to update individual PCs that most healthIT still requires.
Nimble software: The practice patterns are continuing to evolve particularly as new technologies open up care models that weren’t possible before. Consequently, the ability to easily modify workflow, templates, etc is vital.
Mobile devices: Both patients and doctors have mobile devices wherever they are. DPC practices, as inherently customer focused organizations, naturally want to deliver convenience to their patients. One DPC practice shared how they haven’t seen a patient with shingles in person in years. Instead of the hassle of scheduling an appointment (often taking days to get in), they can take a picture of the symptoms with their mobile device and send it to their doctor right away. Assuming it is shingles, the doctor can call in a prescription and save everyone time and money.Biometric devices: There is an explosion of personal biometric devices. Increasingly, patients are buying them or providers are buying them on behalf of patients with chronic conditions.