Vancouver Coastal Health Authority selects Carecast to support CPOE and clinical documentation initiatives

Burlington 06 February 2003IDX Systems Corporation has signed an agreement with Vancouver Coastal Health Authority (VCHA) in Vancouver, British Columbia, to provide the IDX Carecast enterprise clinical system across the largest health organisation in Canada. VCHA, serving 25 percent of British Columbia's residents, selected Carecast to leverage the system's expanded computerised physician order entry (CPOE) and electronic clinical documentation capabilities.


The health authority will implement Carecast in its Richmond General Hospital and Minoru Residence Extended Care facility. VCHA also will upgrade Vancouver General Hospital, University of British Columbia Hospital, as well as the George Pearson Centre and the G.F. Strong Rehabilitation Centre facilities to Carecast. When the launch is complete, Carecast will span 75 percent of this comprehensive health system serving more than 1800 beds.

"Our first priority is quality patient care, and Carecast provides the fully integrated clinical, financial and administrative system we need including its clinical decision support, integration between inpatient and outpatient activities, and efficient support of multiple facilities", stated David Ostrow, MD, Professor of Medicine and CIO of VCHA. "We believe in the direction IDX is moving, and share a parallel vision for expanding CPOE use among Canadian providers, bringing crucial safety benefits to Canadian patients."

VCHA chose Carecast because of the system's advanced CPOE functionality and comprehensive clinical capabilities, which enhance patient care, reduce medical errors, and improve cost-effectiveness, as well as the scalability and reliability of the networking and hardware structure. With Carecast, VCHA will become one of the first Canadian providers to adopt integrated CPOE technology, which allows physicians to enter orders electronically, reducing the risks inherent in illegible handwritten orders and bringing warnings about possible drug interactions, patient allergies, and overall best courses of treatment directly to the physician as the order is entered.

In addition, Carecast's clinical documentation capabilities will enable VCHA clinicians to effectively plan and manage each patient's care by documenting every facet of the patient's condition and treatment in the system's lifetime electronic patient record. By integrating medication charting, nursing assessments, other clinical assessments and vital signs on-line, electronic clinical documentation reduces paperwork for nurses, reallocating time spent on administrative functions to direct patient care.

"With the implementation of Carecast, we expect to fulfil our clinical documentation needs, taking us to the next step in enabling efficient work processes, eliminating redundancies and providing physicians, our nursing staff and allied health care professionals with the tools they need to enhance the quality of direct patient care", stated Vivian Eliopoulos, VCHA Director of Clinical Information Systems.

VCHA is responsible for the delivery of around $1,9 billion in acute, residential and community care to over one million people in communities from Richmond through Vancouver, the North Shore, Sunshine Coast, Sea to Sky area, Powell River, Bella Bella, and Bella Coola.

Carecast will also support VCHA's emergency department work flow and triage, incorporate fully integrated pharmacy information, co-ordinate scheduling and medical records management, and generate data to support staff allocation and other management functions. In addition to these comprehensive capabilities, system reliability was a key factor in VCHA's decision to implement Carecast. The system runs on a single platform built on HP NonStop, which provides "Thinkspeed" sub-second response time, unsurpassed reliability, and 99,9 percent system uptime.

The selection also was based on IDX's ability to tailor the product to the Canadian social health care system, including customisations for the patient PIN module, a unique medical record number used to identify patients for billing through the British Columbia Ministry of Health Services.

"The decision to implement Carecast puts VCHA at the forefront of Canadian health care organisations' progression toward CPOE", stated Larry Krassner, President of the IDX Carecast Division. "We are extremely pleased to work with such a respected partner in the Canadian market, and look forward to helping VCHA advance fail-safe care with Carecast CPOE capabilities and electronic clinical documentation."

Carecast represents the next generation of electronic clinical information solutions, delivering unsurpassed response time and reliability to support fast-paced clinical environments. The system automates work flow throughout the health care enterprise and enables rapid access to patient records across the care continuum, from admission to discharge, including pharmacy and ambulatory care.

Carecast is a fully integrated clinical, financial and administrative system, combining core clinical processes for orders, results, pharmacy and clinical documentation with administrative and financial processes for scheduling, registration, admitting, charging and billing. The result is a comprehensive lifetime patient record that enhances the quality of care and promotes operational efficiencies. Developed by and for providers, in collaboration with some of the United States' major hospitals, clinicians and health care executives, Carecast builds on 25 years of innovation with the IDX LastWord enterprise clinical system.

Founded in 1969, IDX Systems Corporation provides information technology solutions to maximise value in the delivery of health care, improve the quality of patient service, enhance medical outcomes, and reduce the costs of care. IDX supports these objectives with a broad range of complementary and functionally rich products installed at 3200 customer sites. Customers include 134.000 physicians who utilise practice management systems to improve patient care and other work flow processes.

IDX Systems are installed at 370 Integrated Delivery Networks representing more than 660 hospitals, 175 large group practices with more than 200 physicians, and 635 mid-size group practices with less than 200 physicians. The IDX Web strategy includes browser technology, e-commerce and Web-based tools, built using Internet architecture, that facilitate access for patients, physicians and care providers to vital health information and data managed by the IDX clinical, administrative, financial, and managed care products.

EDiX Corporation, an IDX subsidiary, offers medical transcription and clinical documentation services to physicians groups and hospital customers. IDX has approximately 5000 full-time employees. More news on IDX is available in the VMW November 2002 article Montefiore physicians use IDX's LastWord to enter 100 percent of inpatient orders electronically.

Leslie Versweyveld

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