Health literacy is an integral component of Mobile Integrated Healthcare (MIH) programs that aim to reduce the number of 911 calls and emergency department visits from people who frequently use these services. In an MIH program, community paramedics conduct home visits to assess, treat, and refer patients to appropriate services. During these visits, the exchange of health information can empower clients to be informed and take charge of their health.
A visit typically involves:
- Reviewing clients’ medical history
- Conducting home safety assessments
- Evaluating social support networks
- Reviewing vital signs
- Conducting medication review and reconciliation
- Providing appropriate referrals to services
Highlighting Prince George’s County MIH Program
A/Lt. Evan Sanna presents Prince George's County MIH Program at the MIH Symposium in Sandy Spring, MD to representatives from multiple organizations, agencies and Fire, Rescue, and EMS Departments across the region.
The Prince George’s County MIH program, based in the Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department, has collaborated with the Horowitz Center to develop an informational binder for their clients to record and store health information. Each binder includes the following:
- Logs for blood pressure, blood sugar, pain, weight
- Medication trackers and lists
- Client goals and notes
The Center is working on a pilot study with the Prince George’s MIH Team to determine the usefulness of the binders. The evaluation will focus on the following areas:
- Doctor-patient communication
- Health information-seeking behaviors
- Medication management
- Healthcare system navigation
The results from this study can help improve the services provided by the MIH team and, ultimately, the health literacy of clients.