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Most Wired

Deaconess has been named a Most Wired health system by Hospitals & Health Networks, a publication of the American Hospital Association, for the third year in a row. For us, Most Wired is more than just an award – it reflects our culture and the way we work every day.

Chief Medical Information Officer, Dr. Dan Edelman, credits Deaconess’ early and successful implementation of an Electronic Health Record to progressive leadership. “Our health system continues to be ahead of the curve,” he says, “because the Informatics & Technology Services Department at Deaconess accepted a challenge from our leaders years ago to embrace health information technology and make it a meaningful part of how we provide care. At the end of the day, our technology standardizes health care tasks. This allows the care givers to spend less time hunting for information, and more time caring for patients."

 

What does it take to be "Most Wired"?

A major goal of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is to digitize the health care industry. This includes successful creation and use of an electronic health record (EHR) system, getting rid of paper charts, providing patients easy access to their own medical record, and more.

To be considered “Most Wired,” a hospital must prove it has created and is using health information technology at a faster rate than most other hospitals. More specifically, Most Wired hospitals meet all requirements in each of four areas surveyed by the American Hospital Association. The areas surveyed are:

  • Infrastructure
  • Business and Administrative Management
  • Clinical Quality and Safety
  • Clinical Integration
 

What does this mean for patients?

Infrastructure
You need the right equipment to build and operate a successful electronic health record (EHR). The administrative leaders at Deaconess realized early on that healthcare is better when it’s connected. In 2008, six years before the government deadline, Deaconess selected EPIC as our EHR vendor and began the transition from paper to electronic charts.

With the full support and resources of the health system, Deaconess successfully built a solid foundation for the move to digital health care. This included hiring staff and training them on the latest health-related technology, purchasing the proper hardware and software to run our new programs, creating a strong wireless network, and putting security safeguards like encryption in place.


 
Business and Administrative Management
The EHR system you built must support business operations of the hospital. A successful EHR allows the hospital to manage supplies, track available patient beds, gather important financial and medical data, and provide on-line payment options for patients.


 
Clinical Quality and Safety

The EHR system you built must support safe, high quality patient care. The EHR at Deaconess has many patient safety features. They include:

  • Bar codes to match the patient with their medication. This ensures the right patient receives the right medicine every time. 
  • Computer screen alerts for allergy and medication interactions.
  • Creation of an universal patient information form so all caregivers collect the same information for all patients. 
  • Physicians type medication orders into the system. No more trying to read "doctor handwriting."
  • Medical image review available from any computer or mobile device (with proper security access).

Clinical Integration
All members of the health care team, including the patient, must be able to access the same information. Deaconess is an industry leader in patient interaction thanks to MyChart. MyChart is the patient portion of our electronic medical record system. With MyChart, patients can send messages to their doctor, refill prescriptions, and view lab and x-ray results using a computer or smart phone. This tool has enabled our physicians and patients to have better communication and better outcomes.


Other Features:

  • Virtual bridges that connect physician offices, the hospital, home health services, radiology, laboratory, the pharmacy, and specialty hospitals (The Women’s Hospital and The Heart Hospital) so everyone involved in a patient’s care can view the same information.
  • Creation of MyHealth – a virtual resource center for patient education.
  • Electronic copies of discharge instructions are saved in the medical record for easy reference.