Mackenzie health transitions to Epic EMR
July 19, 2017
RICHMOND HILL, Ont. – On July 8, Mackenzie Health launched a new electronic medical record (EMR) that transforms the way care is delivered in this community. Implemented in collaboration with Epic, the software is the first full-suite Epic EMR to be installed in a Canadian hospital.
A state-of-the-art system, the EMR makes it possible for the care team to spend more time with patients, provides physicians with exactly what they need to make important healthcare decisions quicker, and empowers patients with easy access to their health records.
“The launch of the new electronic medical record is one of the largest transformational projects in Mackenzie Health’s history and puts us at the forefront of care delivery,” said Dr. Steven Jackson (pictured), chief of staff, Mackenzie Health. “Over the past two years, our staff, physicians and volunteers have been working together as a team to ensure this journey is a success, and we are proud to be the first hospital in Canada to implement the end-to-end Epic system.”
For patients, the new EMR brings a number of benefits, including a faster and more efficient registration process. Similar to the airport check-in process, patients who have scheduled appointments at Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital can now swipe their health card on a Self-Serve Registration Kiosk, follow the simple instructions on screen, get an armband from a Patient Assistance representative and proceed to their appointment.
Registration for an appointment is even faster for patients who completed E Check-In through Mackenzie Health’s new and improved MyChart. If patients are signed up for MyChart, they can register for their appointment up to seven days prior to their appointment and receive a barcode that they can scan at the hospital to indicate that they have arrived, get an armband and proceed to their appointment. MyChart is also available as an app.
In MyChart, patients can see their personal health information, view and cancel appointments and, in select areas, communicate with their care provider via written message. The patients’ health record is also available to all those involved in their care, meaning that the entire care team has access to the same information and patients spend less time repeating questions or duplicating tests.
With computers available by the patients’ bedside, nurses and physicians can document the care in real-time, as well as send orders directly to lab and pharmacy. The new EMR also increases medication safety and reduces the chance for errors with closed loop medication administration and bar code validation at the patient’s bedside.
Epic, the software developer for the system, is recognized as a world leader in medical records and information technology, which has implemented its systems in thousands of hospitals worldwide and will be implementing them in several Canadian hospitals over the next few years.
“Our vision at Mackenzie Health is to create a world-class health experience for our patients and families, and ensure they receive the highest quality care possible,” said Altaf Stationwala, president and CEO, Mackenzie Health. “The implementation of the new electronic medical record supports this vision and will influence how we care for our patients here at Mackenzie Richmond Hill Hospital, as well as the new Mackenzie Vaughan Hospital and at the health system level.”
To ensure a smooth transition, these were just a few of the steps taken by the hospital:
• Two weeks prior to the launch, over 100 Mackenzie Health staff transitioned over 15,000 scheduled appointments, including for X-Rays, MRIs and other medical imaging tests, dialysis and cardio-vascular rehabilitation, into the new Epic EMR.
• Over 1,500 scheduled surgeries and ambulatory procedures were also converted from the legacy system to the new Epic EMR. More than 50 trained secretaries from physicians’ offices spent over four days converting the appointments. With this transition, physician offices can now manage their provincial wait times and their procedure schedules in one place.
• In preparation for the EMR launch, a multidisciplinary team involving registration, nursing, pharmacists and more made sure all admitted patients were captured within Epic on July 7. This enabled the team to continue to provide the best care once the new EMR was launched on July 8. The process involved more than 70 people working together for over 20 hours.
• To ensure staff, physicians and volunteers are well supported during the transition, a technical Command Centre staffed by approximately 90 staff members and an Operations Support Centre that oversaw clinical operations and coordinated the 265 additional support staff deployed across the organization, all working 24/7, have been instrumental for the go-live.
For more information, please visit www.mackenziehealth.ca/emr.