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Laboratory systems

Ottawa-area docs can access OLIS lab results

OTTAWA – The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) and Hawkesbury & District General Hospital (HGH) have announced two innovative ehealth projects designed to better serve more than 1.2 million patients in Eastern Ontario.

In a provincial first, patients of The Ottawa Hospital are now benefitting from access to Ontario laboratories information system (OLIS) data through their clinicians, thanks to the myTOH viewer. This means that important patient information will be available for clinicians to make treatment decisions within minutes or seconds compared to the previous hours or days.

OLIS is a cornerstone information system that connects hospitals, community laboratories, public health laboratories and practitioners to facilitate the secure electronic exchange of laboratory test orders and results. The ability to electronically share this information helps healthcare providers make faster and better patient care decisions.

The myTOH viewer provides a single point of access to clinical and non-clinical applications, from both inside and outside TOH. Using this viewer, clinicians and regional partners can access patient electronic health records, as well as up to 50 different applications, many highly specialized and treatment specific (e.g. cancer, heart disease).

The information provided through the viewer enables physicians to provide better, safer and faster decision making by removing the need to chase paper records and test results.

“The eHealth Ontario provincial lab viewer initiative enables our patients to be treated at The Ottawa Hospital, secure in the knowledge that lab results from the community are available to authorized clinicians at the touch of a button,” said Dale Potter (pictured), CIO, The Ottawa Hospital.

A second milestone initiative for patients in Eastern Ontario is a collaborative project between TOH and the Hawkesbury & District General Hospital to consolidate each hospital’s individual electronic health record (EHR) system into one common system.

The consolidation will increase the availability of clinical information across the region and the amount of clinical information within TOH’s EHR system. It will also provide clinicians with access to the full spectrum of a patient’s data including consultation, laboratory, diagnostic imaging, and patient care reports.

Through the sharing of information provided by the consolidated system, the need for duplicate testing between hospitals is eliminated. Similarly, patient wait times will be significantly reduced and organization-wide efficiencies will save the healthcare system time and money.

“By consolidating the two EHR systems into one common system we get a more complete view of a patient’s medical history,” said Marc LeBoutillier, CEO, Hawkesbury & District General Hospital. “It also saves valuable time tracking down information from the other hospital or from missing important clinical information that may not have otherwise been provided. This is one more way we are improving healthcare and putting patients first.”

“These projects each mark significant milestones towards improving patient care while supporting the government’s goals of increasing patient safety and better access to care in the province,” said Deb Matthews, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care. “It’s quite an achievement to know that more than 1.2 million patients in the Champlain Local Health Integration Network are experiencing better and more coordinated care, thanks to eHealth Ontario initiatives.”

Posted February 23, 2012