"Whether it's a vision test or foot exam, to get that information at the point of patient encounters is really key," Scott Rybak, vice president of business development for NaviNet, told eWEEK. "Prematics is our first-but not our last-partner with the mobile device," Rybak said.
Health industry professionals can now use NaviNet's network to access wellness and insurance claims information from health plans within Prematics' mobile Care Communication application.
Rybak explained that clinical messages would pop up within the application providing access to NaviNet's database. "It's all fully integrated within the workflow," he said.
Prematics decided to work with NaviNet so that its Care Communication users would be able to access health care plan information, according to Kevin Hutchinson, president and CEO of Prematics.
Without that access, a "care gap" would exist, NaviNet said in a news release Sept. 17.
According to NaviNet, "Seventy percent of U.S. physicians, as well as hundreds of thousands of clinicians and other health care professionals nationwide, rely on NaviNet for secure, real-time administrative, financial and clinical communications with leading national, commercial, Blue and Medicaid health plans."
As part of the agreement, NaviNet's network will provide users of Prematics' mobile application with access to these multiple payers.
Prematics' mobile platform is geared toward small and midsize medical practices and is known as a tool for writing electronic medical prescriptions, the company said. The Prematics Care Communication mobile clinical application is designed to improve communication among medical personnel and provide mobile alerts indicating how closely patients adhere to medication schedules. Care Communication also provides information on drug interactions, lab tests, overdue exams, pharmacies and clinical protocols on health plan payment.
"Partnering with NaviNet allows us to provide care management and coordination capabilities between NaviNet's health plan customers and physician offices," Hutchinson said in a statement. "This is a key step for Prematics as we continue the expansion of our services to health plans in support of recent health reform legislation through strategic partnerships."
Gregg Malkary, founder and managing director of Spyglass Consulting Group, noted that these efforts to improve real-time communication in the medical field and extend interoperability beyond proprietary systems conform to the federal government's meaningful-use requirements for EMRs (electronic medical records).
Real-time access helps solve some of the interoperability issues plaguing health care professionals as they go electronic, Malkary told eWEEK.
"It seems to me there is a critical need for care coordination in health care today," Malkary said. "We live in silos of data. The fact that we have this secure network that's actually leveraging the payers' database about the patients and also what's also included in their plan only helps improve the quality of care."
The agreement with NaviNet follows Prematics' Sept. 14 announcement that it will make Care Communication available on the Apple iPhone and iPod Touch.
NaviNet has recently expanded its network into the mobile space. It also offers its messaging network on the desktop. In June, NaviNet announced plans for a SAAS (software as a service) EMR application.