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Top Ranked Cancer Hospital Completes Epic EHR Implementation

The nation's leading cancer hospital is now live on its Epic EHR platform.

By Kyle Murphy, PhD

- One of the country's top cancer hospitals has completed its Epic implementation, according to the Houston Business Journal.

Epic EHR implementations

Joe Martin reports that the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center went live on its Epic EHR platform late last week, calling the Epic EHR implementation a "massive overhaul" of the health system's health IT infrastructure.

The system-wide Epic implementation process began back in December 2012, a year before MD Anderson chose Epic Systems as its EHR vendor of choice. The same report indicates the Epic EHR system now in place at MD Anderson takes the place of a prior system whose comprehensiveness could not match the EHR replacement.

The financial details about the Epic implementation remain undisclosed. Comparisons between this and other prominent implementations of Epic EHR technology, such as the one taking place at Mayo Clinic, provide little insight. The latter is a highly complex, integrated health system with more than two thousand licensed beds valued at $1 billion over five years.

MD Anderson is one-third the size and the health system is much more a provider of specialty care. Data from Definitive Healthcare puts the Texas health system in the 99th percentile for net patient revenue ($2.78 billion with total revenue exceeding $5.58 billion). Similarly, MD Anderson maintains significant advantage in both inpatient and outpatient markets, 53.3 percent (86th percentile) and 59.1 percent (98th percentile), respectively.

As for health IT, DefinitiveHC reports an estimated operating budget of $69.2 million and an estimated capital budget of $38.7 million.

Related: 10 Biggest Epic EHR Implementations in United States

By the numbers, the Texas health system has dominated national rankings of cancer hospitals over close to 15 years, taking top honors a total of eleven times and currently holding the top spot for 2015-2016 in the U.S. New & World Report's ranking of best cancer hospitals. Additionally, MD Anderson is a top-ten hospital for ear, nose, and throat (#5) and gynecology (#7).

More importantly, the health system is one of few to be recognized as an original comprehensive care centers along with two others.

MD Anderson joins the ranks of specialists using Epic EHR technology. In January, Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City went live with its Epic EHR. Similarly, HSS is an industry leader in orthopedics (#1) and rheumatology (#3) according to U. S. News & World Report's Best Hospitals.

The Texas health system did not approach their Epic implementation lightly. For example, an important factor behind the 2014 hiring of Chief Financial Officer Weldon Gage was his experience with Epic EHR implementations at Texas Children’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.

Most recently, the Texas health system has expanded its role in cancer care through strategic partnerships with other hospitals and providers through its MD Anderson Cancer Network. Through the network, MD Anderson certifies other health systems, such as two Premier Health hospitals in Ohio.

Epic EHR implementations



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