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Best client stories of 2014

I’ve always admired the people who work in health care. They’re even more on my mind this month with the recent passing of my father. The outpouring of support I received made me think about the many other people whose loved ones need medical care during this holiday season. Our clients care for thousands of people every day who mean a lot to their families. As 2014 draws to a close, I’d like to take a moment to thank those clients for their efforts to care for others. To honor their work, here some of the client stories that appealed most to readers this year: Alberta Health Services (Calgary, Alberta, Canada) – The organization used Allscripts SunriseTM to build strategic clinical decision support tools that improved clinical results for diabetes management and saved C$600,000 with an order set for a […]

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7 successful inpatient EPR implementation approaches

  • Jennifer MacGregor
  • 12/23/2014

As of June 2014, St. Joseph’s Health Centre (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) is live on its new eCare inpatient electronic patient record (EPR)*, powered with Allscripts SunriseTM. We’re shining a spotlight here because it’s a great example of a successful implementation. Throughout the project, patient care remained top priority, which shows in a video St. Joseph’s developed: St. Joseph’s Chief Information Officer, Anne Trafford, is truly in a class by herself. She and her team employed several approaches worth sharing: 1. Let the clinicians drive The St. Joseph’s implementation team emphasizes that health IT system deployments should be clinically driven, not “just an IT project.”  Keep the EPR in perspective; it’s an important tool to help clinicians deliver better patient care at the bedside. 2. Incorporate electronic medication reconciliation St. Joseph’s is one of very few hospitals in Canada that is […]

The popularity of a recent blog post, 6 tips for achieving Meaningful Use Stage 2, shows there’s a lot of interest in real-world experience and advice on this topic. Physicians’ Alliance, Ltd. (Lancaster, Pennsylvania, U.S.A) just completed a whopping 61 Meaningful Use Stage 2 attestations in the third quarter of 2014. We learned more about their experience from IT Director Barbara Eberly, Physician Practice Liaison Nancy Snavely and Quality Initiatives Coordinator Vicky Martell. Much of their sage advice echoed that from fellow Allscripts TouchWorks® EHR and FollowMyHealth® user Coastal Carolina Health Care, and they had a few additional tips to share: 1. Physicians need to champion the portal Barbara Eberly: When we launched FollowMyHealth, we started with the usual tactics: bulk invitations, posters, temporary employees who enroll patients. But it still didn’t get us where we wanted to be. Reports showed […]

Imagine the registration desk employee at your physician’s office handing you a tablet, instead of a clipboard. You enter your information once, and every form thereafter is automatically populated with your information. Sound like what we expect from organizations outside of health care? Of course, registration is only one process that generates paper. Other healthcare organization departments create massive amounts of content, including Human Resources, Accounts Payable, Scheduling, Legal, Health Information Management (HIM) and more. And while patients aren’t encumbered with managing it, the clinicians and staff are. As electronic health records (EHR) permeate the healthcare industry, so should enterprise content management (ECM) solutions. The advantages of effective ECM solutions Effective ECM solutions securely capture content, make it easily accessible to those who need it and streamline processes by automating routine tasks related to that content. For patient registration, ECM […]

As the homecare regulatory environment heated up in the late 2000s, many agencies took steps to transition from fee-for-service to value-based models of care. VNA Home Health Hospice (South Portland, Maine, U.S.A.) used Allscripts Homecare to prepare for the future of health care, and shared its story with us: AllDocs: Automated Communication Engine: Several factors spurred the VNA toward change, including regulatory pressure, acquisition by a larger health system and program growth. The former electronic medical record system was not able to keep pace with these changes. The team at VNA was not satisfied with its organizational structure, either. Admitting a patient required paperwork to travel from clinical staff, to the performance improvement department (known as the “fix-it” shop), then finally to the medical records department. It was especially cumbersome to conduct much of this work using paper forms. Clinical managers […]

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What makes a great hospital IT workplace?

Healthcare IT News named “Best Hospital IT Departments” earlier this fall.  Out of 193 nominations, only 25 hospital IT departments made the final list, based on more than 5,000 survey responses from hospital IT employees. SunriseTM from Allscripts clients ranked #1 in 3 out of 4 possible categories. What’s the secret to their success? It’s not surprising that in healthcare, it’s not about the money. In fact, according to Healthcare IT News, only one of the 25 winners mentions salary and benefits as a motivating factor. Instead, healthcare IT employees place value on things like teamwork, respect and contributing to better patient care. Congratulations to all the award winners, including several Allscripts clients. Here are just some of the ways our clients are capturing those values in their own workplaces: Large Hospital IT Department #1: Phoenix Children’s Hospital (Phoenix, Arizona). […]

According to recent quality reports of 220 Accountable Care Organizations participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP), Coastal Carolina Quality Care ranked third overall and second in care coordination. This ACO and its associated physician practice, Coastal Carolina Health Care (CCHC), use Allscripts TouchWorks® EHR and FollowMyHealth®. We recently interviewed CCHC Chief Executive Officer Stephen Nuckolls and Associate Administrator Carrie Hagan about their success with MSSP and the Meaningful Use incentive program. For 2014 four providers attested for Stage 1, and 38 providers attested for Stage 2. What’s the secret to their success? Nuckolls and Hagan share these six tips for achieving Meaningful Use Stage 2: 1. Allow plenty of time Carrie Hagan: “We started the implementation process back in November of 2013, working towards attesting in the second quarter of 2014…We wanted that intense focus for a longer […]

Editor’s Note: The following article originally appeared in CIO Review’s Healthcare Technology Special, October 2014. You can access the article here, pages 42-43. Open is a journey, not a destination. Open means you facilitate the exchange of information between programs; you make it easy for your software to talk to other people’s software. The need for Open technologies has shaped standards, which evolve over time to meet new challenges and address shortcomings of previous standards. It all started with punch cards, EBCDIC and ASCII Back in the ‘60s there were two competing standards for how computers would store data – one was proprietary to IBM main frame computers called EBCDIC. Pretty much everyone else used the other standard, called ASCII. EBCDIC can trace its roots back to the punch card standard, invented by Herman Hollerith in 1894 to help tabulate the […]

I am surrounded by technology that helps me communicate with the various physician practices that help my family stay healthy.  I have three patient-portal logins, two email accounts, various health apps to triage symptoms and have visited numerous websites to get information about potential medical issues. However, despite all these readily available options, I still picked up the phone and called my family’s doctors a half dozen times for little things. I know I’m not alone. In fact, patients are calling their doctors more than ever. Telephone calls to physician practices have increased an estimated 25-50% over the last five years. This is a costly trend for healthcare providers, because it means training more staff to handle issues appropriately over the telephone. Missteps can involve liability, and telephone documentation is scarce. The demand for quality telephone triage has created an […]

When I meet with Allscripts TouchWorks® EHR* clients, I’m impressed with how they use it to create value for their organizations. We found great examples in a recent interview with Dr. David Graham, chief information officer and chief medical information officer at Memorial Health System (Springfield, Illinois, U.S.A.). Memorial Health System is one of the clients leading the way in its use of TouchWorks EHR data. Here are some of the highlights, in Dr. Graham’s own words: 1. Improve clinical results “I can use examples in all the specialties we have in our primary care, from mammogram screening rates in our obstetrics group to hypertension care in our internal medicine practice…Incredible improvements we’ve done through partnering with our physicians and putting that data that comes out of TouchWorks EHR in front of them.” 2. Spend more time with patients “[TouchWorks […]