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EMR Enhancement

New prescribing algorithm, Pain Institute to be part of the solution

UH Clinical Update - April 2018

By Cliff Megerian, MD, President, UH Physician Network

One of our priorities for 2018 is focusing on provider engagement, which includes an emphasis on wellness, as well as on minimizing as best we can the administrative burdens on providers.

Looking at national data on the latter, which has been collected through clinical engagement surveys at scores of organizations, it is clear that one of the leading sources of provider dissatisfaction is the electronic medical record – regardless of which system an organization uses.

Here at UH, physician engagement is a priority and we know that one of the principal needs we must address is our EMR system. The first and foremost goal of our physician leaders is to find every way possible to improve and rectify problems that you, our physicians, have identified.

This effort has been underway for several months. We have been working closely with UH Information Technology and with our Chief Medical Information Officer Jeffrey Sunshine, MD, PhD, in a state of constant improvement.

I’ve asked Jeff to describe in more detail the steps that have been taken, other improvements that are underway, and what we aspire to achieve in upcoming months or years. Here is his report:

Accomplishments we have achieved:

  • Stabilizing our EMR system by dramatically reducing incidents of downtime
  • Improving access by significantly shortening log-in times
  • Enabling a unified view of patient information across our EMR system: the 93 percent of providers now on our core systems can directly view across records with “EHR Agent,” and all providers can see displayed data from other EMRs in our Community Record.

What we are working on currently:

  • Adding integrated clinical calculators in UHCare Ambulatory that can pull relevant data from a patient’s chart
  • Connecting to the state OARRS system in UHCare Ambulatory to monitor a patient’s past or current prescription activity (UHCare Acute is already connected to OARRS)
  • Enabling the use of electronic prescriptions for controlled substances
  • Integrating surgery and anesthesia into UHCare Acute

Our future plans:

  • Piloting remote scribes with virtual computer assistance, using voice-capture technology, similar to an Alexa device, and machine learning to assist documentation
  • Addressing population health with technology to notify providers – before a patient’s appointment – of screenings or other tests they may be due for, such as a colonoscopy, immunizations, blood pressure check, glucose or A1C measurements
  • Promoting clinical predictive analytics to providers, beginning with sepsis; by using patient records assimilated into vast arrays of data, risk projections will flow into the EMR to indicate which patients are at higher risk, why, and what preventive measures should be emphasized for that individual

Also, all providers now have access to the UpToDate clinical support resource directly through the UHCare Ambulatory EMR. You can access it through the InfoButton in the right-click menu for both Problems and Medications. UpToDate connects providers to evidence-based medical information and patient education material for more than 11,000 topics in 25 specialties. After completing the one-time registration, you can earn no-cost CME credits through this feature.

We know it is incumbent upon us to communicate with our physicians on a regular basis. This process is ongoing; we also urge you to reach out to us with your concerns.

Our commitment is to enhance the provider experience by receiving your feedback and taking positive steps toward resolution.