January 8, 2010 – The implementation of an electronic health record (EHR) system at Twin County Regional Hospital (TCRH) of Galax, Va., has enabled the facility to reduce report turnaround times from 24 hours to minutes for radiology reports in the clinic and has significantly improved patient throughput, patient care and patient satisfaction.
When TCRH expanded its hospital information system, McKesson Paragon, it integrated plans for an inpatient and outpatient EHR include to make patient histories, physician orders, and test results immediately available anywhere a patient goes for care.
In addtion, TCRH positions itself to take full advantage of economic stimulus incentives by creating information-sharing between the hospital and its employed and several affiliated physician practices.
TCRH is a 141-bed acute-care hospital and was recently recognized as a “Most Improved” community hospital under the Most Wired Survey and Benchmarking study. In addition to the EHR, the hospital’s plans include implementation of McKesson’s electronic document imaging system, computerized physician order entry (CPOE) system, pharmacy information system, and medication administration bar-coding technology system.
“Over the past 18 months, we’ve provided practitioners in our hospital and clinics with more timely access to critical clinical information,” reports Jon Applebaum, president and chief executive officer, Twin County Regional Hospital. “Now the stage is set to make even larger strides in improving the quality and safety of the care we provide. We expect the additional clinical solutions to help us realize an almost 3-to-1 return on investment in information technology.”
TCRH is building on a successful deployment of the Paragon integrated clinical and financial system, which is specifically designed to meet the needs of community hospitals, and McKesson’s Practice Partner CCHIT-certified outpatient medical record. The integrated systems create a single EHR and enable the practices to electronically send orders to the hospital, with results flowing back to the physician offices. All employed physicians at six clinics use the Practice Partner system, while physicians at four affiliated practices are gearing up to install it.
“With an EHR, we can share information among our clinics and with the hospital, preventing duplicate procedures, cutting costs and increasing the continuity of care for patients,” says Chastity McGrady, manager of the TCRH Family Care Centers. “The Practice Partner system’s ability to electronically submit prescriptions to a patient’s pharmacy also significantly improves patient safety.”