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4 UPMC Pinnacle Hospitals Use Epic EHR to Achieve HIMSS Stage 6

Four Pennsylvania hospitals recently achieved Stage 6 on the HIMSS Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model using Epic EHR.

Four UPMC Pinnacle hospitals recently acheived HIMSS Stage 6 recognition using Epic EHR.

Source: Thinkstock

By Kate Monica

- Four hospitals part of University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Pinnacle health system recently achieved Stage 6 on the HIMSS Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) using Epic EHR.

UPMC Pinnacle Carlisle, Lancaster, Lititz, and Memorial earned HIMSS Stage 6 recognition as a result of hospital staff’s dedication and commitment to improving patient safety, reducing medical errors, and optimizing EHR implementations.

HIMSS EMRAM is an eight-stage model that measures the adoption and utilization of EHR functionality. The model incorporates methodology and algorithms to automatically score hospitals on a scale of 0-7 for their EHR capabilities.

The model serves as an international benchmark for hospitals that leverage advanced health IT use to improve patient care. Thirty-seven percent of all hospitals tracked by HIMSS Analytics across the country have achieved Stage 6 recognition as of September 2018, according to HIMSS.

The Pennsylvania-based health system completed an Epic EHR implementation project at its newly-affiliated hospitals and clinics in Carlisle, Lancaster, Lititz, and York in April 2018. The implementation consolidated the multiple health IT systems in use at each UPMC hospital into one platform.

Now, all hospitals part of the health system use a single, unified EHR system for patient registration, scheduling, admission, discharge, transfer, billing, and other administrative processes.

“Epic allows information to be securely shared throughout the entire UPMC Pinnacle network to support world-class patient care,” said UPMC Pinnacle CIO and Senior Vice President of IT David Quirke. “Patient information is kept in a single record and any UPMC Pinnacle provider or specialist to access real-time updates and test results.”

Patients utilize Epic’s patient portal MyChart to view test results, communicate with providers, and schedule appointments online.

“Stage 6 recognition is a testament to our IT staff, as well as our clinical staff and physicians leading this project,” said UPMC Pinnacle Vice President and System CMIO Salim Saiyed, MD. “Our team spent countless hours to ensure Epic implementation had as few issues as possible. We are so grateful to all our employees for their focus and dedication to using advanced information technology.”

By achieving HIMSS Stage 6 recognition, the health system also demonstrates its ability to comply with federal regulations and incentive programs including the CMS promoting interoperability (PI) program.

“We continue to move the bar higher in our continuing efforts to increase patient safety, increase patient satisfaction and improve care through interoperability, knowledge sharing and analytics,” said Saiyed.

UPMC Pinnacle Community Osteopathic, Harrisburg, and West Shore hospitals earned HIMSS Stage 6 recognition in 2016.

UPMC Pinnacle includes 2,900 physicians and allied health professionals. The non-profit health system serves patients across a 10-county area at several outpatient facilities, eight acute hospitals, and 1,360 licensed beds.

Colorado-based Memorial Regional Health will soon launch its own Epic EHR implementation project after affiliating with SCL Health St. Mary’s Regional Health System.

The Memorial Regional Health Board of Trustees made the decision to affiliate with SCL Health and launch a new Epic EHR system at a September 20 monthly meeting.

By affiliating with SCL Health, Memorial Regional Health will maintain independent management and governance while also gaining access to the buying power of the larger health system.

The affiliation will also allow Memorial Regional to achieve a savings of about $5 million over five years on the Epic EHR replacement. Memorial Regional is a full-service community healthcare system based in Craig, Colorado.

SCL Health is a large, non-profit health system spanning Montana and Colorado specializing in delivering care to lower-income patients.

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