Tuesday, August 21, 2018
BJC | Academic hospitals and Washington University School of Medicine went live on Epic, BJC’s electronic health record, June 2. The hospitals involved included Barnes-Jewish Hospital, St. Louis
Children’s Hospital and Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital, as well as Washington University Physicians.
The go-live was larger than all previous Epic go-lives within BJC combined. The implementation included more than 3,200 physicians and 15,000 staff to train, increasing the total number of enterprise Epic users to about 40,000.
The numbers were impressive. For example, the number of BJC and WUSM staff supporting their colleagues as super users numbered more than 2,600.
According to John Lynch, MD, BJH vice president and chief medical officer, the go-live was successful. “Even with higher volumes, we saw continued improvement,” he says. “And the areas we were most concerned about before the go-live went well. Fantastic teamwork all around!”
During the first day of the go-live, Victoria Fraser, MD, chair of the WUSM department of medicine, was impressed by how much physicians and staff were able to accomplish on Epic. “They saw a lot of patients and came up to speed pretty quickly,” she says.
Richard Matuszczak, WUSM nurse supervisor of the Center for Advanced Medicine Medical Multispecialty Center, says, “Epic is like a great movie production such as ‘Star Wars’ or ‘Gone with the Wind.’ All had great producers, directors, awesome cast members and actors, plus all the behind-the-scenes people who played great parts in the Epic transition.”
“The Epic system is wonderful,” says Neill Wright, MD, WUSM neurosurgeon at BJWCH. “It’s easy to use. Before, I had to dictate my notes. Now, with the template, a couple of clicks and I’m done.”
Users also shared their thoughts on teamwork and the success of the go-live through “mission moments” each day.
Teresa Ehlert, endoscopy patient care manager, says, “I am so proud to work with a fantastic, dedicated provider team who has made the difference in our go-live endoscopy.”
At SLCH, team members supported one another by nominating their colleagues for golden tickets, a recognition that focused on learning as many things as possible and what was going right with the Epic rollout at SLCH.
As many in the BJC community know, a systematic, organized approach to significant change plays a big part in the successful rollout of the Epic electronic medical record system.
“Change is always difficult, but it is usually a good thing,” says Lisa Gabriele, Siteman Cancer Center infusion nurse. “I’m not a computer lover. I prefer paper and pencil, a face-to-face conversation over a cup of coffee. In other words, I’m a dinosaur. Epic has been user-friendly once you know where to go. The Epic1 support team has been Epic!”
While change may be difficult, the moments of success have a great impact on providers, staff and, most importantly, patients.
At BJWCH, Vlad Kushnir, director of bariatric endoscopy at WUSM, says, “The staff made things look seamless. Their dedication and hard work definitely paid off.”
With the end of the academic go-live, the Epic circle is nearly complete, creating one electronic medical record within BJC Medical Group, community hospitals, WUSM, academic hospitals and BJC Home Care Services. Memorial Hospital Belleville and Memorial Hospital East will be the last hospitals to go live sometime in late 2019.
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