Imagine the scenario where Thomas R., who is being treated at our Keeseville Outpatient Clinic, is now referred to Inpatient care.
While the process might seem straightforward, Inpatient clinicians will need Thomas’s notes, medications, and the many other elements of his treatment history.
In years past, collecting this information proved time consuming and presented opportunity for error from missing data, hand-written notes that might have been poorly legible, and other factors.
Now, however, with St. Joseph’s implementation of electronic health records (EHR), such a referral, and untold other clinical and administrative procedures, involving our residents’ treatment can be quickly and accurately accessed.
A formal definition of EHR might include the following, as provided by Wikipedia, “An electronic health record (EHR), or electronic medical record (EMR), is the systematized collection of patient and population electronically-stored health information in a digital format. These records can be shared across different health care settings. Records are shared through network-connected, enterprise-wide information systems or other information networks and exchanges. EHRs may include a range of data, including demographics, medical history, medication and allergies, immunization status, laboratory test results, radiology images, vital signs, personal statistics like age and weight, and billing information.”
St. Joseph’s has chosen the Netsmart EHR platform provided by Netsmart Technologies, Inc., in Overland Park, Kansas. The system will allow us to efficiently track services, measure outcomes, and prepare for potential future broader connectivity to the entire healthcare ecosystem as government entities continue to move toward value-based care models.
Some features of St. Joseph’s new EHR platform include:
Scheduling for group appointments
Creating treatment plans
Automated orders for laboratory tests, and
As one might imagine, implementing a EHR platform, regardless of the vendor, is a complex process. But as Deputy Director of Inpatient Services, Tammy Landerway believes, “St Joseph’s has the ability to adapt to change while still maintaining high quality service to those we serve. Netsmart is a new EHR system that is going to allow our agency to continue to do so. We have a great team and plan to make the transition successful and continue to be an agency of dedication, compassion and recovery.”
To ensure a more seamless introduction of the new technologies, St. Joseph’s is following a prescribed schedule to allow for all users to become familiar with the Netsmart EHR system.
Senior IT Technician, Rikki Bennett, shares, “On May 5, St. Joseph’s kicked off a four-day event “Train the Trainer”. During this occasion, our Clinical, Billing, and Finance staff became familiar with many aspects of our EHR, including:
Focusing on Netsmart’s terminology and translating it into what we currently use in AWARDS
And yesterday all of our trainers attended a “Trainers’ Retreat” at Heaven Hill in Lake Placid.
Rikki expresses her special thanks to all staff who participated in this event and shares that, “Your continued participation will help drive the success of this implementation.”