If you're keeping up with the latest healthcare IT trends, then you know that nearly every article lately is about population health management – and for good reason.

For organizations working to achieve the Triple Aim, population health initiatives play a significant role. Coordinating patient care is at the core of population health management, as it allows patients to navigate the healthcare system and be engaged participants in their care. Coordinated care also requires that providers have access to complete and accurate patient data, which calls for an evolution of existing technologies.

Population health management initiatives aim to leverage data to identify at-risk patient populations and consequently intervene based on insights from the data. This allows for the creation of customized care plans for individual patients, as well as more accurately determining trends in medicine. The Orion Health COORDINATE solution is built on top of the company's Open Platform and benefits from its longitudinal patient record and real-time streaming data from unlimited sources. This creates a rich foundation for interoperability and sharing care plans – something that makes this technology stand out in the industry. With COORDINATE, providers can document care plans, an essential tool in achieving better patient engagement and outcomes.

Without a specific plan of care highlighting important issues and personalized goals, gaps in care are likely to proliferate. Doctors can share this care plan with the patient, assign tasks related to achieving certain health goals, and actively engage the patient in their care. The seamless integration between the patient's individualized care plan and the activated care pathways, a multidisciplinary care management tool, gives clinicians a rapid and effective way to manage any gaps in care, ensure patient compliance, monitor positive/ negative trends and build accountability across the care continuum.

Overseeing patient care across a community as well as at the individual patient level is challenging, but employing a solution with a suite of tools that facilitate tracking, complete documentation and alerts makes collaboration and communication much easier. The popular phrase 'it takes a village' certainly applies to caring for patients with care teams that consist of varying numbers of providers. It is imperative that the team is communicating and is constantly up-to-date with the latest patient information – giving the patient confidence that everyone is working together on their behalf. Population health is an important initiative to undertake and with the right partners, the patients of that village will experience enhanced care coordination and better outcomes.