HealthOctober 27, 2022

Equipping clinicians with reliable data for effective decision-making

Vietnamese health system supports treatment recommendations and clinical education with UpToDate and Lexicomp

With the rapid shift in healthcare delivery and patient behavior brought about by technology, it has become increasingly important for healthcare organizations and clinicians to predict and adapt to these changes and meet the evolving needs of their patients.

For Vinmec Healthcare System, a healthcare group in Vietnam operating seven hospitals and four clinics, this is reflected in what it calls its “4P model” — Personalized, Participatory, Preventive, Predictive — for patient management.

Patients today show more active participation and ownership in the treatment process, often accessing medical information on their smartphones and other personal devices.

This is a positive trend, says Dr. Nguyen Van Dinh, Head of the Respiratory, Allergy and Clinical Immunology Division and Internal Medicine Department at Vinmec International Hospital Times City, one of the hospitals within Vinmec Healthcare System.

“As individuals, many patients are quite knowledgeable. And they are encouraged to participate in decision-making — that is the most effective means to achieve the best clinical outcomes as well as patients’ satisfaction.”

When we have case presentations, we mainly prefer to refer to UpToDate for diagnosis and treatment recommendations. I believe that UpToDate has certainly raised the standard of practice in our hospital.
Dr. Nguyen Van Dinh, Head of Respiratory, Allergy and Clinical Immunology Division Vinmec International Hospital Times City

Clinicians need updated, reliable data

This increase in patient knowledge and involvement means that clinicians themselves also need to be equipped with the latest research and data available to arrive at the most appropriate clinical decisions, thus achieving optimal clinical effectiveness.

With the large amount of information produced daily, it is important to ensure the data consumed by the clinicians are highly reliable, relevant, and easily accessible.

This is where technology has helped greatly, notes Dr. Dinh. “Technology has had a tremendous impact on clinical effectiveness,” he says. “Before technology, to find certain information could take days, if even possible. Now we can collectively find all the data about any disease with just a computer and the Internet.”

Vinmec has been leveraging Wolters Kluwer’s Clinical Decision Support tools, including UpToDate® evidence-based treatment recommendations and Lexicomp® drug information, to help provide clinicians with an easily accessible and reliable source of clinical information.

“There are many situations in which it is quite difficult to make a diagnosis and treatment recommendation, and having a second or third opinion is a great help. Consulting with others is one way to achieve good decision-making,” Dr. Dinh explains. “So, equipping ourselves with reliable data resources like UpToDate and Lexicomp is useful for Vinmec healthcare professionals, especially for clinicians.”

UpToDate, the leading global Clinical Decision Support reference solution, is constantly updated with the latest evidence-based clinical guidance and best practices across more than 25 medical specialties. Content in UpToDate is driven by a global community of more than 7,400 authors and editors who are themselves clinicians and experts in their own specialties.

Lexicomp provides evidence-based drug treatment information for optimized drug decision-making. It enables a patient-specific approach, delivering recommendations catered to individual patients' complex conditions and histories, like renal impairment and obesity, to safeguard patient safety.

These two solutions are aligned to help coordinate care and reduce unwarranted variability and miscommunication between clinicians using the tools.

UpToDate and Lexicomp are aligned to help coordinate care and reduce unwarranted variability and miscommunication between clinicians using the tools.

Raising the standard of practice and enhancing education

UpToDate and Lexicomp have received positive feedback from clinicians since introduction.

“Most of the residents really like UpToDate, and they have been using it daily,” says Dr. Dinh. “When we have case presentations, we mainly prefer to refer to UpToDate for diagnosis and treatment recommendations. I believe that UpToDate has certainly raised the standard of practice in our hospital.”

He regularly refers to UpToDate in his own clinical practice as well.

“There are two situations in which I commonly refer to UpToDate,” he explains. “First, all immunosuppressive drugs have many common and uncommon side effects. If a patient shows up with an uncommon symptom after starting a drug, I will look at UpToDate to find out whether the symptom is a side effect or it needs further investigation. Second, in certain cases when a patient cannot tolerate first-line therapy, I will use UpToDate to see which medication is most supported by evidence-based data to use as an alternative.”

As a teaching hospital, these digital tools have also been a useful resource for Vinmec’s lecturers and medical students, so they are kept abreast of the latest research findings and developments in the field.

“For all the faculty members, the residents, and the students to access the most updated medical literature, Vinmec decided to use UpToDate as a source for references because it is well known as a reliable source and a point-of-care tool,” he says. “Our aim is to become an international accredited teaching hospital.”

About Vinmec Times City International Hospital

Vinmec Times City International Hospital is a part of the Vinmec Healthcare System, a nonprofit medical system invested by Vingroup — Vietnam’s leading private consortium with a mission stating: “We care with compassion, professionalism, and wisdom.”

Established in 2012, Vinmec now has seven international-standard hospitals and four clinics. It has become a destination of international-standard healthcare services in Vietnam for its leading healthcare experts, state-of-the-art facilities, comprehensive services and continuous efforts to implement the world’s most advanced treatments.

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