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Collaborative Prenatal Care with Digital Support

In collaboration with Philips Germany and the Picker Institute Germany, OptiMedis AG has launched a project to improve care for pregnant women in northern Germany. By applying different components of a new model of care, the aim is to improve prenatal and postnatal care through the fourth month of life, and lower the rates of caesarean, premature and SGA births.

The reasons for launching the project are considerable structural shortcomings in prenatal care, e.g. due to lack of communication among stakeholders or limited networking between the medical community and early support services. The project will be bidding for the next round of funding from the innovation fund of the Federal Joint Committee, the highest decision-making body of the joint self-government of physicians, dentists, hospitals and health insurance funds in Germany, by March 2018.

Components of improved care

Independent midwives are encouraged to take on a stronger role in guiding pregnant women, especially in the areas of prevention and early support services. To enable earlier access to support systems by pregnant women, particularly those with social, psychological, or financial problems, collaboration has been sought with the early support services in place since 2007. The focus is thus on the risk selection of pregnant women, additionally supported by a guiding risk questionnaire.

The basis for communication and networking is a digital communications platform developed by Philips, including an app for pregnant women and a digital maternity log, which is still available only in paper form in Germany. Pregnant women themselves, as well as the treating gynecologists, midwives, and hospitals will have access to this platform. Collaboration between outpatient service providers and maternity clinics will also be promoted with interdisciplinary ongoing education courses and quality circles.