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DeOna Bridgeman, M.D., reflects on diabetic eye screening Advisory Forum

“I think the energy and insight in the room was excellent. The number of people that attended really demonstrates a huge commitment from LHP providers to work together to address common concerns.”

In her reflection following LHP’s Advisory Forum on diabetic eye screening, DeOna Bridgeman, M.D. affirmed the purpose and value of this first-in-a-series of opportunities for providers to share workflows and brainstorm solutions to common problems. The forum – hosted by EyeHealth NW at its Tigard clinic in mid-June – drew 22 providers and administrators representing primary care and ophthalmology. Diabetic eye screening was selected as the topic because last year the LHP network did not meet the target for this performance measure.

Key takeaways and ideas

LHP network
  • LHP will investigate a referral platform. An ideal referral platform should make referring easier and not add extra work by making referral coordinators duplicate information. 
  • Develop a virtual method for practices to contact one another to continue to share best practices and ask questions.  
  • Continue to promote the use of Advisory Forums for specialists and primary care providers to solve problems congruently.

  • The checklist for a diabetic patient for a primary care provider visit can range from 10 to 20 items that need to be completed within the year.  
  • A personalized letter from the PCPs themselves outlining the importance of diabetic eye screening may have a bigger impact on motivating patients than a standardized office brochure or handout.  
  • PCPs do not have the bandwidth to track down patients who have not completed their screening. Care Support Resources, a Legacy population health initiative, may have the ability through care management to help facilitate patients getting to their appointments. 

  • By maintaining a robust 13-month call-back system and scheduling the next annual retinal exam at the time of the present appointment, ophthalmologists can help improve compliance.  
  • PQRS codes on their claims to ensure insurance carriers are reflecting that the patient visit was for diabetic screening.
  • By using the standardized heading “Diabetic Eye Screening” at the top of their note, ophthalmologists can facilitate communication. Patient records are currently being sent by fax, mailed letter or via EMR.

A second forum focused on cervical cancer screening is being planned for mid-October. The LHP Field Operations Advisers will be contacting providers who may benefit the most from the forum. If you want to be contacted, please reach out to Heidi Mahoney at hmahoney@lhs.org or 503-415-5658.

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