Ellis & Adams was hired by Dameron Hospital to develop and execute on a strategy to optimize the hospitals' use of an electronic health record (EHR) recently rolled out to the 200 bed hospital.
Driven by the need to adopt Meaningful Use of Information Technology and transition the hospital from paper based records to electronic charting, in September of 2014 the hospital went live on a suite of EHR applications including computerized physician order entry (CPOE), electronic medication administration (eMAR), electronic clinical charting and replacement of the hospitals’ pharmacy information system.
Following the go-live, key performance metrics of the hospital began to erode, including financial performance, employee satisfaction, physician satisfaction and patient quality indicators. These disruptions included issues with clinical charting and technical controls injected into the hospitals operations that had not previously been utilized with new workflows not clearly known and technically functional.
These issues resulted in increased turnaround times for key patient care processes including admissions, discharges and transfers. Key administrative functions were also severely damaged, including loss of patient charges, resulting in an increased number of days in accounts receivables associated to claims. The process disruptions also translated into severe clinician satisfaction issues, culminating in the resignation of privileges by several members of the medical staff.
In December, 2014, the hospital engaged Ellis & Adams to conduct an assessment and propose a recovery plan and associated projects to address the gaps in functionality needed to operate the hospital, embedded work-around processes adopted by clinical staff to address lack of adequate supporting tools and the medical staff dissatisfaction level resulting from the EHR experience.
E&A associates recommended a three pronged strategy to address the problem, including launching a physician adoption and education program, defining and managing a project to instill a governance model for prioritizing and reducing the functional issues of the EHR and formation of a sustainable governance model for ongoing support and operations of the newly acquired portfolio of technologies.