McLaren-Bay Region Converting to Electronic Medical Record
March 4, 2012
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By: MyBayCity Staff
Bay City, Michigan McLaren-Bay Region is taking another step into the digital world with the implementation of Paragon, an electronic medical record that will improve documentation and safety for all of the 404-bed hospital's patients. Paragon will be online effective Sunday, March 11.
"As with any new computer system, especially one as complex as an electronic medical record, there are likely to be bugs to fix and delays to negotiate in the early stages," said Joy Marotzke, RN, Director of Patient Care Services and Coordinator of the Paragon implementation. "We hope to keep problems to a minimum, and we are grateful for our patients' understanding as we implement this crucial system," said Marotzke.
All hospitals eligible for Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement must convert to certified electronic medical record technology. Certified electronic health record technology gives assurance to hospitals and patients that system and their information is secure, and offers necessary technological capability and functionality.
Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), the Federal government will provide incentive payments to eligible hospitals and professionals that demonstrate meaningful use of this technology. By the year 2015, those that do not demonstrate this will have payment adjustments that are not favorable. In addition, there are strict timelines that must be met. McKesson's Paragon has been tested by the ONC (Office of National Coordinator Authorized Testing and Certification Body) and is certified to meet this criterion. McKesson is the name of the multi-national company that developed and provides Paragon.
McLaren-Bay Region staff have been undergoing intensive training for several months, building and testing modules for data entry and retrieval, billing, ordering supplies, and scheduling. Every department in the hospital is affected, from surgery to pharmacy to
nursing. The system is designed to improve accuracy and safety. Medications, for instance, will be bar-coded and electronically matched to individual patients, helping to avoid medication errors.
Nursing and other staff will be using Workstations on Wheels (WOWs) to enter and retrieve data. The stations are designed to allow the nurse to enter data while still directly interacting with patients and families. In some patient rooms, the computers are located on articulated arms near bedside.
Command Centers will be established during the first two weeks of Paragon implementation to assure that bugs are fixed as quickly as possible. The Command Centers will be staffed by information technology and clinical staff.
Health/Fitness Article 6806
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