West Shore Medical Center and its employed physician practices are at the forefront of the transition to an electronic health record (EHR), with all physician practices now using EHR instead of a paper record. The hospital’s EHR system is being expanded and soon the entire facility will be paperless.
West Shore’s expertise was sought for a recent state-wide conference. The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HiMSS) conference held September 25 and 26 in Novi featured presentations and discussion about the state of health information technology in Michigan. Theresa Anderson, MSA, CMPE, West Shore Medical Center’s Director of Practice Operations, served on a panel discussing putting EHRs to meaningful use in the physician office. Over 250 attendees from across Michigan participated in the event.
“We’re very excited to have successfully implemented our system and to see it working efficiently and smoothly in all of our provider offices,” said Anderson, who led the implementation team for the West Shore practices. “I was honored to be asked to participate in the conference. It was rewarding to share our experience with those just beginning the process and informative to hear what others had done in their locations.”
The move to EHR is happening across the nation. “Various federal regulations mandate the use of an EHR as means for increasing patient safety, safeguarding the privacy of information, and ensuring accuracy of records,” said Anderson. “Hospitals and physician offices must not only demonstrate that they have an EHR, they must show they are using the data in a meaningful way. It’s a lot of work for our physicians, office staff, and information services team.”
All West Shore physician practices are now entirely electronic, using a program called eClinicalWorks. All orders are entered directly into the computer, reducing the chances for error. Information can be transmitted electronically from the physician offices to other service providers, such as laboratory, radiology, pharmacy, or specialty offices.
The information is also quickly available to the patient. “Our patients are able to web enable their accounts so they can view their health record online,” Anderson explained. “Patients love having the information at the tip of their fingers.” Anyone who sees a West Shore Medical Center-employed physician can request access to the patient portal by registering with their physician office. “All we need is an email address,” said Anderson.
For more information about the patient portal, click here or contact your West Shore Medical Center physician’s office.