Vila Health Independence Medical Center: Stakeholder Communication

Abstract

The proposed Electronic health record systems (EHRS) change for the Vila Health Independence Medical Center will impact all aspects of the hospital’s operation. Due to this fact, this paper reviews the stakeholders that are significant for the alteration and determines their involvement and value of the proposed strategy to each group. Additionally, to ensure buy-in, assessment of interests and communication of the benefits that the new EHRS will provide is recommended.

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Introduction

EHRS is considered to be an essential component of innovation within the healthcare industry. The current workflow and operations at the Vila Health Independence Medical Center are compromised by the inefficiently working EHRS and Health Information Management (HIM). This paper aims to outline the major stakeholders that will be affected by the implementation of the new EHRS strategy, as well as practices that help ensure buy-in.

Stakeholder Impact

The Appendix provides an assessment of stakeholder groups at Vila Health Independent Medical Center. The relevant stakeholders to this impact analysis are both medical personnel that is directly in contact with patients and administrative staff responsible for an efficient workflow. Physicians, nurses, and financial managers may be more relevant than others because their cooperation with the EHRS directly impacts the quality of care and reimbursement that the establishment receives.

In order to arrive at recommendations related to a health information management (HIM) system, the process of analyzing the existing EHRS and its competitors was applied. Additionally, the feedback from executives and employees working at Independence Medical Center was assessed. Areas of unclear or missing information that can be used to improve the process in the future are the levels of information technology knowledge that current employees possess and the ability of the center to purchase EHRS that can integrate several components of the hospital’s information technology systems.

Previous recommendations include substituting the Opus system for a more efficient program and focusing on employee training with the engagement of personnel with excellent technical knowledge. The timeline for implementing them is a year because the proposed strategy is complex and requires an alteration within all aspects of the center’s functioning. Challenges in regards to logistics, resources, and training involve a need to introduce a new education plan that will help personal use the new system, the process of changing Opus that will require additional planning, and the financial resources necessary for this purchase. According to Chao, Hu, Ung, and Cai (2013), some physicians may be concerned with legal liability associated with EHR use. Additionally, the preference for handwriting the diagnosis and treatment plan as well as the lack of appropriate information technology skills are another challenge that should be addressed during training.

The impact, including value, of these recommendations on resource allocation, as outlined in the Appendix. It is anticipated that patient outcomes will improve due to the ability to integrate and synchronize information from different management systems (Mirani & Harpalani, 2013). New training will be affected because the medical center will have to cooperate with vendors to ensure that the personnel is capable of using the system. Workflow changes will be impacted at the initial stages of implementation due to a need for transition. However, the efficiency of daily operations will be enhanced. Best practices for overcoming implementation barriers are recommended by Yip, Phaal, and Probert (2014), who argue that the engagement of stakeholders in the early stages of EHRS development and implementation is critical. Contrary to data and opposing viewpoints in regards to this strategy may be connected to the fact that non-technical professionals may be incapable of providing substantial input into choosing and setting up a system. Value statements for critical stakeholders are included in the Stakeholder Matrix in the Appendix. The criteria that can be used to evaluate the degree to which the value for a stakeholder was delivered is employee satisfaction with the new EHRS.

Buy-in Practices

The best practices that guarantee the buy-in of stakeholders and proper implementation in this process are engaging them in the process, assessing feedback, and developing criteria for ensuring that their needs are met. Chaa et al. (2013) argue that the application of EHRS allows for better communication and is beneficial for all stakeholders, including patients, medical personnel, and the establishment. The authors suggest assessing the interest of different groups that will be using an EHRS before implementing any changes, which is the purpose of this paper. Pouloudi, Currie, and Whitley (2016) argue that favorable or unfavorable attitudes of stakeholders towards EHRS determine the result of system implementation. Therefore, focus on primary stakeholders and continuous communication with them are crucial. Overall, this paper outlines the importance of stakeholders to the improvement of the current EHRS at Villa Health Independence Medical Center and offers approaches that enable buy-in.

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Appendix

Stakeholder Matrix (created by the author).

Key Stakeholder: Position and Department Key Role within HIM system Reports to? Or Manages whom? Systems, Software, or Technology used. Impacted by Recommendation Role in Successful Implementation Value Statement
CEO Oversees the operations and functioning of the HIM. Manages all personnel in this Medical Center. EHR – Opus Recommendation: Change the Opus discharge process to minimize the number of readmissions.
Impact: This will help save $7200 a patient.
The CEO can initiate the change of the existing Opus EHR to a more relevant and suitable one that will help reduce readmission rates. This alteration delivers value because it allows to both save money on preventable readmissions and improve the health of the communities.
Operations managers Ensuring that all departments work efficiently, supplies are provided to patients, and security measures are sufficient. Report to chief operations manager. Materials information system, chart information system, EHR, census management, security, and supply systems. Recommendation:
A unified HIM that incorporates EHR and other systems.
Impact:
Mitigation of mistakes due to a need to input information about the supplies both in the supply management system and EHR.
The operations managers will be responsible for integrating different systems without damage to the existing workflow. The value is delivered through the minimization of mistakes due to a more effective process and improvement of patient outcomes.
Financial Service Managers I am working on billing and claim processing. Report to the Director of Financial Services EHR – Opus Recommendation: A flexible EHR system compliant with reimbursements forms of different providers.
Impact: Approved claims rate will improve.
The financial department is crucial to the hospital’s revenue. Thus, improvement of their workflow should enhance the financials. The value is connected to revenue because more accurate claim processing will reduce the number of declined reimbursements from the current 100% and 200%, which will allow this medical center to receive payments faster.
Physicians and nurse managers, RN’s I am inputting patient data, ordering supplies, transferring laboratory results into EHRS. Report to Chief Medical Officer EHR – Opus. Recommendation: A new EHR that syncs with other systems used in this organization and provides an accurate representation of patient data.
Impact: Patient safety and quality of care will be improved as medical personnel will be able to receive information faster.
The data that medical personnel inputs into the EHRS directly affects the reimbursement for the hospital, and the accuracy of their work impacts the outcomes of treatment. Therefore, their ability to integrate the new system into their work is crucial. Both patient treatment outcomes and revenue will improve, which reflects the value of this element.

References

Chao, W. C., Hu, H., Ung, C. O. L., & Cai, Y. (2013). Benefits and challenges of electronic health record system on stakeholders: a qualitative study of outpatient physicians. Journal of Medical Systems, 37(4), 9960. Web.

Mirani, R., & Harpalani, A. (2013). Business benefits or incentive maximization? Impacts of the Medicare EHR incentive program at acute care hospitals. ACM Transactions on Management Information Systems (TMIS), 4, 20-38. Web.

Pouloudi, N., Currie, W., & Whitley, E. (2016). Entangled stakeholder roles and perceptions in health information systems: A longitudinal study of the U.K. NHS N3 network. Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 17, 107-161. Web.

Yip, M. H., Phaal, R., & Probert, D. R. (2014). Stakeholder engagement in early stage product-service system development for healthcare informatics. Engineering Management Journal, 26(3), 52-62. Web.

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