Live from HIMSS12: How one organization successfully makes content meaningful

When Patrick Hale, CTO of Sparrow Health Systems, told us about his enterprise content management (ECM) solution late in the day yesterday at HIMSS, he described it as “the classic story.”

Working with paper charts, clinicians waited too long for charts and had to go to multiple systems to find all of a patient’s information. Caring for patients in a paper world just wasn’t cutting it anymore. 

Healthcare organizations across the country and around the world face those same challenges every day. As electronic medical records move from a cutting-edge pursuit to an absolute necessity, more and more healthcare organizations are making the transition away from paper.

For Sparrow, though, EMR technology wasn’t actually the first step. While many organizations choose to implement an EMR and then choose an ECM solution to complement it, Sparrow implemented ECM before its Epic EMR.

By eliminating paper first, clinicians got comfortable using technology to find the information they needed. While this transition never comes without challenges, Hale saw clinicians embrace the technology in only a matter of weeks. When Sparrow then went to implement its EMR, clinicians were ready for it.

“The real success is that now clinicians say they can’t live without it,” says Vale.

We’ve heard stories like this throughout the last few days at HIMSS. Whether it’s about complementing an existing EMR or making the transition to one, one thing is clear: healthcare organizations are leaning on content management to augment their EMR in order to provide clinicians with a complete patient health record.

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