Tenet Healthcare puts its EHR efforts on fast track

By Bernie Monegain
09:43 AM

Tenet Healthcare will implement healthcare information technology at 47 hospitals, putting its move from paper charts to electronic health records on the fast track.

The projects focus on improving care and meeting new regulatory requirements spelled out under the federal stimulus package.

Dallas-based Tenet is a healthcare services company whose subsidiaries and affiliates own and operate acute care hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers and diagnostic imaging centers across the country.

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Tenet will roll out technology from the Cerner Corp., headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., to boost its clinical information system capabilities and help Tenet qualify for stimulus incentives under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.

"The agreement represents a further evolution of Tenet's commitment to quality," said Stephen L. Newman, MD, Tenet's chief operating officer. "For the past several years, Tenet has been on a path to leverage technology to improve clinical quality and patient safety. By accelerating and expanding our implementation of Cerner Millennium solutions we will be able to move more quickly from paper charts and manual processes to electronic health records. This evolution will enhance clinical decision support and the exchange of information with community healthcare providers."

Cerner Millennium solutions will be used at 47 of the health system's 49 hospitals, allowing clinicians to:

  • Access a patient's electronic health record, which has real-time information about past visits, lab results and medication history, from any location in the hospital;
  • Use computerized provider order entry (CPOE) to communicate, receive and take note of patient care decisions more efficiently and effectively;
  • Reduce the chance for medication errors using evidence-based rules and alerts embedded within the system; and
  • Create efficiencies through an automated workflow that eliminates time-intensive, duplicative processes and will help improve compliance with industry standards.

"The scalability of Cerner solutions will allow Tenet to expand their integrated HIT network to 47 hospitals in nine states," said Trace Devanny, Cerner's president. "Cerner solutions will enable Tenet clinicians to use a proven, evidence-based system to facilitate communication and decrease potential sources of error by having access to the right information at the right time."

The Cerner Millennium healthcare computing platform provides secure access to an individual's EHR at the point of care and organizes information to meet the specific needs of care providers, front- and back-office professionals and consumers. Tenet will use Cerner solutions to track process outcomes and trends, as well as identify best practices to effectively manage complex clinical and operational processes, reduce costs and improve care.

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