November 3rd, 2015

You may have asked yourself this very question many times: “If I’ve been to this doctor previously, why am I always filling out the same forms?” As a patient at OrthoCarolina, you may have received these forms by email or have come in to the clinic to complete them on paper or on the iPad. “What’s the point?” you think. “Does this information really matter to my doctor?”

The purpose of collecting your health data is to assist your providers in your care. By asking the same questions before and after your treatment, your provider is better able to compare answers to questions about pain and function to help demonstrate the success (or failure) of that treatment based on the symptoms you’ve indicated.

OrthoCarolina (OC) currently uses the Outcomes Based Electronic Research Database (OBERD), which is an online electronic data capture (EDC) system designed to capture and store information associated with your medical care. OBERD can fully integrate with a medical practice’s existing electronic medical records (EMR). Data collection in OBERD can be done in the clinics, operative rooms, and even via email to make it more convenient for whoever is answering questions: doctors, medical staff, or patients.

OC and OrthoCarolina Research Institute (OCRI) began collecting data in OBERD in the spring of 2014. With OBERD, both organizations can now collect patient-reported outcomes, intraoperative data, research study data, as well as patient satisfaction information.

OCRI also has the ability to design research studies within OBERD to capture data. These studies are fully customizable, utilizing measures already built in OBERD, as well as custom forms designed specifically for the study.

OBERD has allowed OrthoCarolina and the OrthoCarolina Research Institute to streamline the process of collecting data in one system that can then communicate with all the other systems utilized by both organizations. The process of collecting data and using it to improve medical care helps facilitate evidence-based medicine that moves healthcare into the 21st century.