May 2017 Newsletter




Turn your digital assistant into a health manager




Have you ever wished you could skip the clinic and ask your smart device for a diagnosis or other helpful health information? Many of your patients would answer “yes.” You’ll be happy to know that we’ve recently expanded Health Navigator’s capabilities to include solutions for digital health assistants.

A digital health assistant can be anything – from the voice aid on your smartphone to a health bot. Incorporating diagnostic technology into digital health assistants can deliver a quicker, more convenient health care experience for consumers – which can increase patient satisfaction and reduce unnecessary office or clinic visits.

Health Navigator’s groundbreaking clinical content supports digital health assistants through our:

  • Proprietary clinical vocabulary for capturing and storing the chief complaint.
  • Natural Language Processing (NLP) engine that converts patient free- text symptoms into severity-coded chief complaints.
  • Nearly 500 symptom-based health bot interaction scripts. These scripts reflect patient age, gender and other clinical factors. Each script has a medical documentation checklist, delivered in natural patient-friendly language.
  • Triage Level of Care (TLC) engine provides recommendations on the level of care needed.
    Diagnosis Engine (DXE) generates a list of possible causes, based on age, gender and symptoms.
  • Additional resources include plain language definitions for more than 2,600 diseases and conditions, as well as the type of doctor or specialist that treats a specific problem.





Meet the Health Navigator Medical Review Board





We recently announced the members of our Medical Review Board, a select team of clinically active health care professionals who aid in the ongoing, clinical evolution of Health Navigator’s content, including clinical vocabularies, symptom evaluation and decision-making analytics.

Board members have a broad range of subject matter expertise in patient satisfaction, health literacy, quality improvement, medical informatics, public health, clinical education, medical call center nursing, and telemedicine.

Learn more about the Health Navigator Medical Review Board.





Spring cold or allergies?





Spring is in the air, but that’s not always fun for allergy-sufferers. According to meteorologists, early spring-like weather across the country has caused pollen counts to increase. And that means allergies may be triggered earlier than normal.

Those with children who have undiagnosed allergies may bring their child to a clinic thinking allergy symptoms are a cold. Health Navigator provides After Care Instruction (ACI) topics related to colds and allergies to help your clinical staff distinguish between a cold and allergies, and to provide the most appropriate care instructions.

Let’s look at the things that distinguish allergies, such as hay fever from the common cold.

  1. If a patient gets a “cold” that develops suddenly and occurs at the same time every year, especially in the spring, they probably suffer from allergies.
  2. Viruses cause colds, while allergies are the immune system’s response to allergens, like pollen or animal dander.
  3. Both allergy medication and cold medicines only control the symptoms (sneezing, cough). However, a cold will heal itself in a healthy individual, while allergies tend to be chronic.
  4. The main symptoms of allergies are itchy nose, clear discharge and sneezing. Common cold allergies include cough, sneezing, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, and fever or aching.

Tips for treating nose/eye allergies from the Health Navigator ACI index:

  • Control nose and eye symptoms with an allergy medication. Use either short acting (Benadryl) or long acting (Zyrtec).
    Short-acting medications like Benadryl or Chlorpheniramine (CTM) are effective every 6-8 hours and require no prescription.
  • A bedtime dosage of medicine is especially important for healing the lining of the nose.
    Cetirizine (Zyrtec) and Loratadine (Claritin) are long-acting medications (up to 24 hours) that require no prescription.
  • Saline (salt water) drops or spray help wash out pollen or loosen up dried mucus. Saline drops or sprays are available in any drugstore without a prescription.
    For eye symptoms, wash off face and eyes to remove pollen.
  • Most often, an allergy medicine given by mouth will help eye symptoms. For more severe symptoms, use an antihistamine or ketotifen eye drop (Zatidor or Alaway).





Health Navigator Featured News





  • Read about our Medical Review Board in Becker’s Hospital Review.
  • With the evolution of digital health tools, symptom checkers are becoming more accurate. Read our article in Health System Management.
  • We’re working with Microsoft to incorporate our symptom checking technology into their new health bot. Learn more.
  • Do you know the most common reasons a patient calls your nurse line? Explore the benefits of knowing this data in our recent Healthcare Call Center Times article.
  • In this age of digital health, it’s time to find news ways to address limited literacy. Check out our suggestions in Medical Call Center News.
  • Did you know checklists can reduce medical errors? Discover how to check the box for better outcomes in Becker’s Hospital Review.

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