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Ankota: Ushering in the Next Generation of Homecare Blog

Home Care Scheduling Software of the Future - Part I

Posted by Ken Accardi on Nov 30, 2009 3:50:00 PM

Frankly, we at Ankota don't love describing our value as being a home care scheduling software company.  Yes it's true that we are pioneering the future of scheduling for home care with innovations like the following:

  • Planning all known visits ahead of time, so when a new client calls your agency, you can offer them appointments when you're already in the neighborhood
  • Routing home care workers from their homes, to cut down on driving
  • Providing episode planning with best practice "Protocols of Care"

It's also true that if the industry broadly adopted the products Ankota has today, we can save 1 billion miles of driving per year in the US and enable the existing home care work force to see 20% more patients.  This is exciting, but this is just the beginning and not the future of home care scheduling software.

The near future, or at least the next challenge in Home Care Scheduling is to provide better coordination of care across disciplines, and we've expanded our "treatment planning" capabilities to support this.  For example, let's think through a typical chemotherapy home infusion application.  Generally, home chemotherapy starts at a chemo clinic where a patient meets with doctors and pharmacists to receive their initial dosing while under monitoring.  The home infusion nurse needs to meet the patient at the clinic, and either needs to bring (or more likely have dropped off ahead of time) the infusion pump and supplies for home dosing.  Then the subsequent visits are at the patient's home, but again require the coordination of supply and pharma delivery before the nurse arrives.  Ankota can now handle this scheduling and the gotchas that go with it, like putting the deliveries on hold until the pharmacists get their work done.  This is exciting, but still it's not the future...

The future of home care scheduling is patient-centered and in addition to addressing the schedules for home nursing, private duty, DME and pharma delivery, infusion therapy, respiratory therapy, physical therapy, meal delivery, social workers, hospice workers, clergy and everyone else who visits the home, there's more.  There are telehealth sessions that need to occur, follow-up phone calls, and other activities that need to be done but don't require a visit.  Then there are the visits that the patient does need to make, to their PCP, and specialists, and sometimes to labs or other venues.  Then there are the things that need to be scehduled for the patient that don't involve anyone but themselves, such as taking their meds, adhering to their diet and performing the exercises and self-measurements that are needed to keep them on track with all aspects of their health.  Bringing all of this together in a way that maximizes the health and happiness of the patient, lowers costs and excercises prudent environmental stewardship - that's the future of home care scheduling - and the name we've given to that future is healthcare delivery management. 

Topics: Health Care Reform, Care Coordination, Aging in Place Technology, Home Healthcare Delivery Management, DME, Home Care Technology, Home Care Scheduling Software

Common Cold versus H1N1 - Here's how to tell

Posted by Ken Accardi on Nov 6, 2009 11:43:00 AM

Know the Difference between  a Cold and H1N1 Flu Symptoms



H1N1 Flu


Fever is rare with a cold.

Fever is usually present with the flu in up to 80% of all flu cases. A temperature of 100F or higher for 3 to 4 days is associated with the  H1N1 flu.


A hacking, productive (mucus- producing) cough is often present with a cold.

A non-productive (non-mucus producing) cough is usually present with the  H1N1 flu (sometimes referred to as dry cough).


Slight body aches and pains can be part of a cold.

Severe aches and pains are common with the  H1N1 flu.

Stuffy Nose

Stuffy nose is commonly present with a cold and typically resolves spontaneously within a week.

Stuffy nose is not commonly present with the  H1N1 flu.


Chills are uncommon with a cold.

60% of people who have the  H1N1 flu experience chills.


Tiredness is fairly mild with a cold.

Tiredness is moderate to severe with the  H1N1  flu.


Sneezing is commonly present with a cold.

Sneezing is not common with the  H1N1 flu.

Sudden Symptoms

Cold symptoms tend to develop over a few days.

The  H1N1 flu has a rapid onset within 3-6 hours. The flu hits hard and includes sudden symptoms like high fever, aches and pains.


A headache is fairly uncommon with a cold.

A headache is very common with the  H1N1 flu, present in 80% of flu cases.

Sore Throat

Sore throat is commonly present with a cold.

Sore throat is not commonly present with the  H1N1 flu.

Chest Discomfort

Chest discomfort is mild to moderate with a cold.

Chest discomfort is often severe with the  H1N1 flu.

The only way to stop the spread of the epidemic is to spread the awareness.

Topics: Care Coordination

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About Ankota

Ankota provides software to improve the delivery of care outside the hospital, focusing on efficiency and care coordination. Ankota's primary focus is on Care Transitions for Reeadmisison avoidance and on management of Private Duty non-medical home care. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact Ankota.

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