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Optimizing surgical patient care at Springhill Medical Center

Healthcare technology must meet specific and complex needs to meet the requirements of surgical care. To provide a safe, high-quality perioperative experience – for its patients, surgeons and clinicians – Springhill Medical Center (Mobile, Alabama, U.S.A.) turned to Allscripts Sunrise Surgical Care™.

We recently interviewed Springhill Vice President and Chief Nursing Executive Paul Read to get his thoughts on the solution one year after implementing.

What challenges did you experience before implementing Sunrise Surgical Care?

Before implementing Sunrise, we were using another vendor’s system. The biggest issue for us was duplication of workflow between the surgical system and our Allscripts Sunrise electronic health record (EHR). The intraoperative portion of the documentation between systems did not live within Sunrise, which made it difficult for clinicians to access information real-time.

Describe your implementation experience with the solution.

We went live in August of 2014, and I really can’t say enough good things about it. It was a very detailed implementation, which I liked.

We’ve done several implementations with Allscripts Sunrise, and I like how well they test the products with us before going live. It gives us the opportunity to catch problems and address concerns, so you don’t have to experience that in a live environment.

How has Sunrise Surgical Care helped improve care for patients?

To have a product that is this seamless with the EHR is priceless when you’re running an acute care hospital. All real-time data flows across the continuum of care, across departments.

Here’s an example: Let’s say you have a trauma patient in the emergency room (ER), and the operating room (OR) team wants to prepare for that patient. The anesthesiologist can log in and view real-time data – vitals, medications, blood products, clinical notes – without pulling the ER doctors away from the bedside. The OR is better prepared to receive that patient. With a single-patient record, our intensive care unit (ICU) can view what’s happening in the OR to prepare for receiving the patient post-operatively.

What has the overall reaction been from staff?

From nursing managers to doctors to anesthesiologists, all comments have been very positive. Some nurses estimate up to 50% reduction in time it takes to chart. They also like that they can add to the documentation. We’ve also seen improvement in our ability to capture charges from surgery.

What will Sunrise Surgical Care enable Springhill to do over the next two or three years?

We’ve made huge accomplishments with Sunrise throughout the hospital. Now that we have it in surgery, it will just add to our abilities to improve patient safety and quality, patient and medical staff satisfaction levels.

There are things that we’re doing in other parts of the hospital with Sunrise that we’re not yet doing in surgery, like scanning barcodes for medication administration. It’s just a matter of extending those Knowledge Based Medication Administration capabilities into the OR, and my hope and desire is that we’ll get to that soon.

Is there anything else you’d like to add about your experience?

I’ve never had a negative experience with a Sunrise product. Yes, we’ve had bumps and issues, but it’s a credit to our IT team and partnership with Allscripts that we are able to resolve them quickly. Allscripts Sunrise is very beneficial to Springhill Medical Center. I wouldn’t want to have to even consider using another EHR.

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