Clinical leaders move into the driver seat… Leave a comment

In the U.S., the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act has resulted in the rapid acceleration of electronic healthcare systems with the number of organizations using EHRs rising from 16% to 96% over the past decade. While these numbers are impressive, the stumbling block has often been the adoption of these systems. Slow adoption means that the very outcomes that these systems were supposed to drive – improved quality and access, and reduced costs – are diminished.

Organizations that have been successful in driving positive outcomes through the adoption of technology have a few things in common.

The first is a strong commitment to organizational change management. By understanding workflow and processes, we can communicate better and ensure that everyone gets the appropriate training.

A good example of this is the work we’ve done with one large hospital. Their nurses were slowed down by network access in several locations in the hospital. They couldn’t document care or order medications in some rooms which delayed entry of orders and ultimately impacted patient care and led to a lot of frustration and rework by clinicians. Just solving the network connectivity problem saves time, improves patient outcomes (even shortening length of stay) and improves the clinician experience.

Hospitals that better leverage the data they have available are also seeing an improvement in patient outcomes.

We are working with a large children’s hospital to use their data to improve business processes, increase access to care and decrease wait times, turning data into information and actionable interventions. The community benefits when healthcare organizations can be proactive and prevent illnesses. For example, by tracking spikes in flu cases in their area they were able to launch vaccination drives and awareness programs in key locations to reduce its spread.


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