MU, Cerner ink 10-year contract extension

The deal 'will help us achieve iconic status'
By Erin McCann
10:59 AM
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The five-hospital University of Missouri Health Care based in Columbia, Missouri, announced it was extending its contract with EHR giant Cerner to 2025.

The contract, Cerner officials said, will focus specifically on population health, research and identifying cost savings for the health system.

The extension continues a contract between MU and Cerner which originally started back in 2009 when the Tiger Institute for Health Innovation was formed. By leveraging an electronic health record platform, the partnership aimed at automating and streamlining the physician workflow and also better managing chronic diseases, which state officials said were responsible for about 71 percent of deaths in 2010. These chronic diseases resulted in hospital charges more than $6.0 billion in 2009.

[See also: Cerner in partnering state of mind.]

One of the other areas the Cerner-MU contract will focus on is around improving patient engagement numbers by tapping mobile capabilities. Stage 3 meaningful use requirements currently call for 25 percent or more of inpatient/ED department patients engage with the electronic health record, meaning they either view, download or transmit their medical record.This objective also requires that 35 percent of patients had a secure message sent from their provider.

[See also: Cerner to buy Siemens health IT unit.]

"This extension of the MU-Cerner collaboration will help us achieve iconic status among health systems for healthcare information technology and outstanding patient care outcomes," said MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin, in a press statement announcing the contract. "It will benefit all Missourians and beyond as we expand medical research, speed healthcare innovations and improve population health locally, regionally and statewide. Through this collaboration, MU has been able to achieve early success in implementing healthcare technology solutions, and we are now able to move forward with new goals to improve patient care."

Through this contract, University of Missouri Health Care has been able to earn HIMSS Stage 7 status and was named the first academic medical center in the nation to meet CMS' Stage 2 meaningful use.