NYU Langone Medical Center launched the first phase of its new electronic health record system last week at their multi-disciplinary faculty group practice at Trinity Center in lower Manhattan. The integrated system, powered by software from Epic Systems Corporation, provides a single platform from which physicians, staff and patients themselves can access and manage medical information. Since its launch, over 50% of the patients seen at Trinity have taken advantage of the program.
“This new electronic health record system is an integral part of our ongoing efforts to leverage technology and enhance our ability to provide patient-centered care and enable the highest level of quality care management,” said Andrew Brotman, MD, senior vice president, vice dean for clinical affairs and strategy, and chief clinical officer at NYU Langone. “For physicians this means having streamlined access to centralized patient information and the ability to order tests and make referrals quickly and easily online.”
All medical information for patients at Trinity will be stored on a dynamic longitudinal electronic health record platform. Trinity physicians and staff will now be able to order tests, prescribe medications and automatically access patient lab, radiology and other testing results using Epic, saving time and significantly reducing the risk of data errors. In addition to serving as a clinical tool, the new system will support administrative services by allowing for the seamless integration between registration, scheduling, and billing, thereby helping to facilitate the delivery of care.
Trinity patients can access their complete medical file online through the secure SmartChart portal (www.smartchart.com), part of the Epic system. Once registered, patients can see their virtual medical chart, including physician notes, lab results, medications, and immunizations. Patients can also use SmartChart to schedule appointments, request prescription refills and communicate with their care teams. The system is embedded with safeguards to ensure that the confidentiality of all patient information is protected in strict compliance with HIPAA regulations and the Stark Law, which regulates relationships between independent physicians and their affiliated hospitals.
“As a leading provider of premier health care services in lower Manhattan, we are proud to be the first practice within the Medical Center to make this new electronic health record accessible to our patients and physicians,” said Andrew Rubin, Vice President for Medical Center Clinical Affairs and Affiliates and oversees the operations at NYU Langone Trinity Center. “Using this new technology, our patients now have the ability to interact with their physician’s office over a secure, encrypted connection to view their medical records, schedule and view appointments, pay bills, request prescription refills, and send secure messages directly to their doctor.”
“As a doctor, I appreciate the fact that Epic lets me provide better coordinated, more efficient and ultimately safer care to my patients with technology that allows me spend more time with my patients and less time on paperwork,” said Roshini Rajapaksa, MD, at gastroenterologist at NYU Langone Trinity Center.
NYU Langone Trinity Center is only a first step for the Medical Center as they continue to leverage technology to provide enhanced care and service. Over the next two years, the system will be rolled-out across the entire institution and will impact approximately 85% of its core operations. Also accessible to voluntary physicians on the Hospital’s Medical Staff, the Medical Center plans to subsidize approximately 75 to 85 percent of the cost of implementing and operating its system in their offices.
"This enterprise Epic system will be the first fully integrated clinical system in the New York area, and one of a few in the nation, which brings together hospitals, physicians, and patients on a single platform. This enables the most efficient clinical and administrative workflow across the NYU Langone Medical Center community and optimizes the quality of care for our patients," said Paul Conocenti, Chief Information Office at the Medical Center.
The next phase of the program is targeted for completion in September 2010 when the scheduling, registration and billing functions at NYU Langone’s Tisch Hospital, Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine and Hospital for Joint Diseases will be incorporated into the Epic technology platform. The system will be extended to inpatient clinical care and special ancillary units in two later phases. Once completed, the Epic system at NYU Langone will seamlessly integrate medical data between care settings, levels of care and departments, as well as facilitate interactions between patients and their doctors.