CarePaths new Assessment Center supports measurement-based care (MBC) which is fast becoming a practice standard. The Joint Commission as well as ONC now require clinicians to use standard measures in their practices. (see A Tipping Point for Measurement-Based Care Click Here.)

MBC may be a new name but it is an old idea. It is the systematic use of patient-reported rating scales and the use of the results (feedback) to inform clinical decision making. Studies show that feedback to clinicians of patient progress during treatment can improve outcomes, particularly by alerting clinicians to patients who are not improving.

CarePaths new Assessment Center provides clinicians with a robust resource to integrate MBC into their practices. Instruments in the Assessment Center include the most widely used standard instruments: e.g. PHQ 9 for depression, GAD 7 for anxiety, etc. There are also measures for specific conditions such as ADHD, OCD, Mania, etc.

A new measure in the Assessment Center is the WHO 5. It is a very short wellness measure (5 questions) that is remarkably accurate at identifying patient’s with clinically significant anxiety and depression. (see Clinicians also find it useful for therapy as it identifies the areas of social/emotional functioning that are of biggest concern to the patient.

The way the assessment center works is this: clinicians decide which assessment battery (or instruments) they want their patient to complete and on what interval, weekly, bi-weekly, etc. The patient accesses the assessments in the patient portal. The patient portal has been reconfigured and there is now an alert titled “Assessments Due Now” which the patient clicks on to take the assessment.

There are three default batteries for Adult Assessment, Adult with Pain Assessment, and Child Assessment.

Clinicians can use these standard batteries or create their own. If you want to create your own battery go to Admin Site – Clinical – Batteries – New Battery. Type in the Name you want for the battery – save battery. You will then be able to add assessments and frequency to the battery you created. You can remove/change batteries by following the first 3 steps and clicking on the battery name. You can also add or remove assessments to that battery.

Once the battery is created you can assign it to any patient. To assign a battery to a patient go to their patient chart – clinical – monitoring – assign assessments – add battery. Choose the battery for that patient.

Of course, you don’t have to use a battery. You can just add instruments on a patient specific basis. To do this click assign assessments-add measure.

Both the patient and the clinician receive a report once the measure is completed.

In the near future, the full assessment center will be available in a downloadable app which will also enable teletherapy and text messaging.