Automated Dispensing Cabinets, Pharmacy Automation, Pyxis, Omnicell, Capsa

automated-dispensing-cabinets

One of the most successful areas in Healthcare IT has been the wide adoption of automated dispensing cabinets for medications and supplies in hospitals and other Healthcare facilities. This technology employs the use of storage units that operate somewhat like vending machines for the medical products, but also have sophisticated software on the back-end that handles patient orders, medication dosing documentation, inventory management, and billing transactions.

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Episode of Care

In Healthcare IT, it’s important to understand the concept of episodes of care versus encounters. An encounter is a single event in which care is given. Individual office visits, ER visits, chemo appointments, and C-Sections are all encounters. An episode is a grouping of more than one encounter.

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Clinical Systems Analyst

clinical-systems-analyst

I’m excited today to give you a career highlight on one of the most important jobs in a Healthcare IT department, the Clinical Systems Analyst. The way this job is packaged may vary from one organization to another. Some organizations may consider the Clinical Systems Analyst to be someone who works with systems from a high level architecture angle. This differs from an Applications Analyst, who implements, supports, and trains clinical systems, but does not work much with the underlying architecture. In other organizations, we may be talking about more of a Systems Administrator, who is responsible for the implementation and support of core technical infrastructure. Let’s look at both approaches.

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Barcode Medication Administration

electronic-medication-administration

In 1994, a nurse at Colmery-O’Neil Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Topeka, Kansas had an epiphany. She realized that the ubiquitous use of barcode scanning in other industries might be able to help with the administration of medications in a clinical setting. The backdrop for her idea was an alarming number of medical errors, estimated to cause between 44,000-98,000 deaths each year.

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What Is SSO?

what-is-sso

We’ve all had those instances when we can’t remember our login to a website due to having so many IDs and passwords. However, this can be more than just a minor irritant for medical staff in hospitals and other care facilities. Many clinical users log into 6-8 different systems during their shift, and need to be able to quickly log in, get their work done, and move on. The solution that has become commonplace in Healthcare IT is called Single Sign-On, or SSO.

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What Is SBAR? Healthcare Nursing and IT Communication

what-is-sbar

We’ve all seen communication tools and styles come and go, but in Healthcare among clinicians, SBAR has seemed to stick. It stands for Situation, Background, Assessment, Recommendation. It works because it’s simple and provides a reliable framework for clinicians to convey urgent and non-urgent information. It is quite useful when clinicians are going through shift change as they communicate patient conditions, but can also be useful in the IT environment.

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Is It Ever OK To Look at Others’ Medical Records?

medical-records-snooping

In December 2014, University Hospitals of Cleveland notified almost 700 patients that their medical records had been accessed by an IT employee. The employee was fired, but only after it was found that the snooping had been going on since 2011. Like most IT folks, this person potentially had access to just about every piece of personal data on patients. I did some research on the hospital’s website and other news, but was not able to determine which medical records system is in place there.

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Emergency Room Overuse

emergency room abuse emergency room overuse

In 2013 the Washington State Hospital Association launched a technology program called EDIE, which stands for Emergency Department Information Exchange. About 30 hospitals participated in a type of health technology exchange, in which details about ED visits were collected by the EDIE system. The system revealed widespread abuse by patients who overused the ER…

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