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Hartford Healthcare selects Allscripts solutions to improve safety of everyday clinical tasks

AllscriptsMisys Healthcare Solutions : 06 August, 2008  (Application Story)
Hartford Healthcare Corporation (HHCC) has selected the Allscripts Emergency Department Information System (EDIS) for two hospitals, as well as the Allscripts Electronic Health Record (EHR) for 200 physicians in affiliated medical groups.
The Allscripts Electronic Health Record automates and improves the safety of everyday clinical tasks, including prescribing and refilling medications, ordering and reviewing tests, and documenting patient care. The Allscripts EDIS electronically streamlines processes for the entire Emergency Department (ED), including tracking, triage, nurse and physician charting, disposition and reporting. Connectivity to the Electronic Health Record provides ED physicians with immediate access to many patients' medical histories and medication lists - information that has historically been provided by patients.

The Allscripts EDIS solution also will exchange information with Hartford Healthcare's existing Eclipsys inpatient information system for a seamless information handoff when patients are admitted to the hospital from the Emergency Department.

'Hartford Hospital remains committed to using the best technology in caring for our patients,' said Stephan D O'Neill, vice president of Information Systems at Hartford HealthCare. 'With Allscripts, we will be able to link our physicians in the Emergency Department with our providers outside the hospital. This will enable us, for the first time, to notify and update a patient's primary care physician when the patient is at the ED, so there will be minimal delay in communicating that critical information.'

Hartford-based HHCC is the parent organization of Hartford Hospital, one of the oldest and largest hospitals in New England, as well as Midstate Medical Center in Meriden, Connecticut. Non-profit Hartford Hospital, the major teaching hospital affiliated with the University of Connecticut Medical School, is a 867-bed facility with more than 6,600 employees and more than 80,000 annual emergency department visits. Midstate Medical Center is a 130-bed acute care hospital with 70,000 annual emergency department visits.

'Hartford HealthCare is addressing one of the most common complaints and serious issues in healthcare today,' said Allscripts chief executive officer Glen Tullman. 'In emergency departments all over this country, we're tying the hands of our world class physicians by not providing them with critical information they need to treat the patients they see. HHCC is bridging the information gap and taking an important step in fulfilling the vision of a connected healthcare system that enables physicians to improve the quality of patient care, reduce unnecessary procedures, and therefore lower costs.'

In deploying the Allscripts Electronic Health Record for 50 physicians in Hartford Medical Group (HMG) - also a HHCC subsidiary - and another 150 physicians affiliated with its hospitals, HHCC is leveraging recent changes to the federal Stark regulations that allow hospitals to subsidize the purchase of healthcare information technology for non-employed physicians. HHCC will cover most of the cost of the Electronic Health Record, and provide implementation services and front-line technical support for physician practices.

'The changed Stark rules make it far easier for physicians in our community to adopt an electronic health record, especially those in smaller practices who may have felt they can't afford this technology or would have difficulty implementing it alone,' said Kent Stahl, MD, chief executive officer of Hartford Medical Group. 'We're looking forward to expanding our existing Allscripts implementation and building a 'virtual care network' with the other physicians affiliated with Hartford HealthCare Corporation.'

HMG implemented the electronic prescribing functionality of Allscripts three years ago and plans to now deploy the entire EHR. The group is one of two HHCC-affiliated practices to have deployed the Allscripts EHR. The other, Connecticut Multispecialty Group, implemented the full Allscripts EHR for its 60 physicians in 2005. The two groups' positive experience with Allscripts was a primary reason HHCC selected the company, according to O'Neill.

'We assessed the competition, but Allscripts was ultimately our partner of choice because of the reputation of the company and the value of its products,' O'Neill said. 'We were really impressed by the technical and implementation teams we worked with, and the positive experience we had with HMG and some of the other medical groups.'
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