Goal-oriented Workflow Systems Can Help in Chronic Disease Management

E. D. Browne, S. A. Barretto, M. Schrefl, J. R. Warren
Schr03c (2003)
Proceedings of the 11th Health Informatics Conference (HIC 2003), Vol. 1, August 10-12, 2003, Sydney, Australia, ISBN 0975101307, pp. 159-163, 2003.
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This paper discusses a methodology for applying Workflow Management Systems (WfMSs) to the domain of Chronic Disease Management in order to improve both the quality and the efficiency care. Many chronic disease management scenarios require a treatment regime that encompasses a set of goals, the achievement of which often involves a range of healthcare providers’ and patient actions. These actions can be coordinated with a Workflow Management System, particularly where the actions have been well documented as guidelines based on best clinical practice. Our paper illustrates a two level approach, whereby the set of disease management goals (for managing Diabetes Mellitus) determines a set of workflow subprocesses, each of which is used to try to achieve a given goal. The derived workflow schema incorporates tasks to assess the achievement of the goal, and to further modify downstream workflow components. This differs from traditional workflow schema design, which often only captures the tasks that need to be done, rather than ensuring that the higher level goals are explicitely modelled, and, at runtime, assessed and the schema modified accordingly. Electronic Health Record systems, could be used to store the explicit care goals and the customised patient workflow schema, together with any dynamic changes, workflow parameters and workflow history and so make additional context information available to each stage in the care process.