Wyckoff Health Improvement Zone OpenNotes Project
Empowering Health Care Consumers
December 4, 2017
OpenNotes is a national movement that spurs real patient engagement by giving patients and their caregivers access to the clinical notes written by health care providers.
When patients have such access, they can develop stronger relationships with their providers; initiate conversations about or co-develop their care plan; develop a sense of ownership over their health information and treatment decisions; better remember what was discussed during a visit; become patient-safety partners by identifying errors in their records; and take medications as prescribed. To foster the spread of OpenNotes to more New York State hospitals and patients, NYSHealth issued a request for proposals, Spreading OpenNotes in New York State. Through this initiative, NYSHealth is supporting hospitals across the State in implementing OpenNotes at their facilities. In 2017, NYSHealth awarded Wyckoff Heights Medical Center a grant to participate in this initiative.
Under this grant, Wyckoff Heights Medical Center implemented OpenNotes across its inpatient and emergency room departments. Wyckoff Heights Medical Center is located in Bushwick, Brooklyn, a medically underserved area that accounts for the largest numbers of preventable hospital admissions and the most potentially preventable emergency room visits in the borough. To improve health locally, the OpenNotes implementation supported strategies that promote more effective patient-provider communication and health literacy; enhance the quality of engagement; and foster improved chronic disease self-management. Wyckoff Heights Medical Center educated both patients and providers on the use of OpenNotes through one-on-one sessions, workshops, screen saver reminders, and in-person visits with patients.