The investment by all major Greater Cincinnati/Dayton health systems in using the same Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system, known as Epic, has provided our area with an outstanding opportunity to optimize the use of Epic for the benefit of the individual systems and, thus, their patients throughout our region in a non-competitive, collaborative setting.
The Regional Epic Advisory Group, consisting of C-suite leadership from each participating organization, determines final decisions and approvals for overall work and deliverables. During 2015 (our first year), accomplishments of Regional Epic Services were significant and included the following:
- Initiated the Regional Epic Educators Community program to support shared education and training opportunities. The first project of this program was aimed toward saving time and expense by minimizing retraining. What resulted was agreement on a base curriculum for nursing students who have their educational experiences at different health systems, so they will not have to be retrained on these topics at each location.
- Launched the Care Everywhere / Data Exchange Community to determine community standards for the sharing of electronic patient information to other Epic organizations, as well as to organizations that use other EMR systems.
- Provided a structure to encourage regional knowledge sharing, i.e. we hosted a regional User Group meeting at The Drake Conference Center in the fall of 2015, with more than 120 in attendance to share best practices.
- Established a regional relationship with Epic Corporation.
- Started three Epic special interest groups – Security, Willow Pharmacy, and Beacon Oncology – to provide forums for the exchange of thoughts, ideas, knowledge, and experiences to improve each organization’s Epic content as it relates to patient safety, regulatory requirements, financial impact, patient experience, and clinician efficiency / satisfaction.
This year, the Regional Epic Advisory Group is in the process of refining and adding services and activities that will increase the value that you will receive for your investment. Specifically, look for these in 2016:
- New Special Interest Groups – My Chart
- In conjunction with The Health Collaborative’s existing Regional Disaster Preparedness program, we’ll be establishing community standards for sharing of real-time electronic medical records during disasters and multi-casualty emergencies.
- Healthcare Technology Focused Event
We hope you have found value in the Regional Epic Services offered in our pilot year and look forward to working with you to continue developing this unique forum for collaboration, information sharing, problem solving, and standardization, ultimately improving efficiencies and enhancing patient care.