MU Healthcare Reaches Highest Level for Electronic Records

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COLUMBIA - A national not-for-profit medical organization has announced all five MU hospitals are in a elite group.  Less than two percent of hospitals nationwide have achieved the highest level of care through Electronic Medical Records, and all five MU hospitals have made the list.

MU Health Care Chief Information Officer Joanne Burns said, "University of Missouri Hospital and Clinics have been recognized most recently for attaining level 7 of EMR adoption so it's the electronic medical record and that's by a group called HIMSS, which is a health information management system society, it's a national group that looks at hospitals across the country and evaluates where they are at."

Doctors claim EMRs cut down on mistakes, allow for nurses to spend more time with patients and streamline the bookkeeping process.

All five MU Hospitals including Ellis Fischel Cancer Center, the Missouri Orthopaedic Institute, the Missouri Psychiatric Center, University Hospital, and Women's and Children's Hospital achieved Stage 7, the highest level of EMR implementation.

"Using an electronic medical record improves patient safety, quality of care delivery and ensures that patients, nurses and caregivers spend quality time together versus just doing data and looking at different documentation," said Burns.

Only 97 of 5,319 hospitals nationwide have reached this advance stage of EMR. According to health care officials the steps taken to reach Stage 7 have included:
• using computers to reduce the potential for error by eliminating hand-written doctors' orders and medication prescriptions
• using computerized systems to alert medical professionals to potential problems, such as a patient's allergy to a medication
• giving all of a patient's caregivers, such as physicians, nurses, pharmacists and others, immediate access to their patient's up-to-date medical information
• allowing faster ordering of laboratory tests and quicker access to those tests by caregivers

MU Nurse Manager Matt Nusbaum said, "From a caregiver perspective, the biggest benefit as a the bedside clinician, is easier and quicker access to information as far as it relates to the patient. Whether that means information from previous admissions that as a nurse I might need to know about, all the way up to what the most current lab data is."

"From a safety and a time perspective, it does save time so that we can do what's most important to us and that's to spend time with our patients," said Nusbaum.

MU Health Care will be recognized at the 2013 Annual HIMSS Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans on March 3-7 of 2013.