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Washington, D.C., and Bethesda, MD. – MedStar Health is working with a Bethesda-based tech startup firm, Mytonomy, to pioneer a novel approach to patient education that delivers individualized instruction through a unique microlearning software platform that can be accessed from anywhere via the internet.  Based on a highly successful pilot with interventional cardiology patients at MedStar Washington Hospital Center, MedStar and Mytonomy announced today that they are expanding the project to cardiovascular patients across the system and will be adding new learning modules to address other types of procedures and conditions.

Traditionally, patient education materials are provided through pamphlets or printouts of broad information. This one-size-fits-all approach is not as effective for personalized instruction, and is often not reviewed or understood by patients. In the MedStar Washington Hospital Center pilot of this novel approach, involving more than 300 patients scheduled for heart catheterizations, nearly 90 percent completed the education modules.  They also reported feeling less anxious, more confident and appeared to be more engaged throughout their care process.

Physicians and education specialists with the MedStar Simulation Training and Education Lab (SiTEL) and the MedStar Heart and Vascular Institute created the innovative educational content, and Mytonomy’s software platform provides the methodology, access and analytics that measure engagement and effectiveness of the microlearning system. Microlearning provides short, clear bursts of information in the manner most effective for learning in today’s digital-dominated world, according to research.  Mytonomy’s system and MedStar’s content mirror this, providing patients and caregivers the information they need to help them to prepare for and recover from a procedure, or to manage a chronic disease, which they can access at their convenience. 

“Engaging patients as active partners in their care is an essential aspect of achieving better outcomes and improving chances for long-term health,” says Stephen R.T. Evans, MD, MedStar Health’s chief medical officer. “Giving patients the information and tools to manage their care needs becomes more important than ever when the measure of health is viewed across a person’s life, not in episodic encounters with a hospital.”

The patient education partners are working now to complete the cardiology curriculum with modules for electrophysiology and heart surgeries. Next up, they will create content for patients with diabetes, and women preparing for childbirth and other ob-gyn procedures. Over the next year, they plan to address other major medical areas including general surgery, orthopaedics, eye care, neonatalogy, oncology, vascular procedures, and gastroenterology.

“Mytonomy has met and exceeded our expectations as a partner to bring innovative learning experiences to our patients,” said Bill Sheahan, corporate vice president with MedStar SiTEL. “We selected Mytonomy for patient education and microlearning for two reasons: Their team has a successful track record of delivering powerful enterprise software systems, which are simple and easy use, and they have a unique understanding of what constitutes an excellent consumer experience. The Mytonomy product was developed with an extensive user-centric design process and is backed by research and extensive testing. These factors aligned perfectly with MedStar Health’s desire to try new and innovative approaches to helping our patients learn and be healthy.”

The Mytonomy microlearning platform is simple to use for patients and caregivers. The patient clicks on a secure link from their provider or hospital team, and is presented with information specific to their procedure or diagnosis. The system is compatible with all major electronic medical records and scheduling systems.

Notable results from Mytonomy’s pilot with MedStar Health included:

  • More than 88 percent of the first 300 patients who were given access to the mobile system logged in and watched their patient education pre-procedure.
  • A MedStar Health study showed patient satisfaction scores with both the Mytonomy system and the care they received increased to more than 90 percent in the hospital with the first 100 interventional cardiology patients.
  • Patients reported reduced anxiety and increased confidence.
  • Patients’ families engaged in the education process by accessing the learning module with the patient at home or in the hospital.

“MedStar Health provided an unparalleled opportunity for our start-up company to quickly bring an innovative, software system to market to address some of the greatest challenges in health care,” said Anjali Kataria, CEO of Mytonomy. “Our goal was to deliver an easy-to-use system that was incredibly powerful behind the scenes.  We built an industrial strength system via an extensive user centric design process incorporating diverse patient and clinician feedback we gathered from MedStar and other major healthcare systems.”

“Other hospitals and health systems using our microlearning platform have the option to create their own hospital-specific videos, or use existing content, which can quickly be modified and re-branded to meet the hospital’s needs, enabling a hospital to be up and running in a matter of weeks with the content they want their patients to have,” said Vinay Bhargava, president and co-founder of Mytonomy. “By engaging their patients with this new digital health tool, clinicians can build trusted patient relationships deeper and faster.”

 

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