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Cross-Functional Hospital Teams Key to EMR/EHR Success

By Alexandra Wilson Pecci  
   February 28, 2017

Hospitals and health systems should assemble cross-functional teams of technology professionals, clinical, and business leaders to properly execute an EMR/EHR post-implementation strategy, advises KPMG.

Although the Office of the National Coordinator of Health IT puts electronic medical record system and electronic health record system implementation rates at more than 95% of hospitals, most EMR/EHR systems aren’t optimized for users, says a KPMG report.

Instead, the systems were “implemented as one-time, factory boilerplate-style system installations,” the report says.

The report advises hospitals to assemble cross-functional teams "that comprise technology professionals as well as clinical and business leaders to focus on executing an [EMR/EHR] post-implementation strategy."

It offers a three-step process for the team:

  1. Conduct a baseline measurement, set benchmarks and incentives, and incentivize leadership to obtain results.
  2. Determine how best to improve the installed EMR/EHR.
  3. Monitor, measure, and report data.

Big Investment
Chief information officers plan to invest heavily over the next three years to improve how EMR/EHRs are used, according to a survey of College of Healthcare Information Management Executives members.

KPMG's poll found that 38% of the 112 survey respondents ranked EMR/EHR optimization has their top choice for where they plan the majority of capital investment over the next three years.

Following EMR/EHR optimization on the priority list were:

  • Accountable care/population health technology (21%);
  • Consumer/clinical and operational analytics (16%);
  • Virtual/telehealth technology enhancements (13%);
  • Revenue cycle systems/replacement (7%); and
  • Enterprise resource planning systems/replacement (6%)

Alexandra Wilson Pecci is an editor for HealthLeaders.

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