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2018: A few of our favorite things

2018 is coming to a close, marking another significant year for health IT. As we enjoy “silver-white winters that melt into springs,” we asked our blog authors to share some of their favorite health IT moments from 2018. Here’s what they shared:

The continuing maturity and advancement of the FHIR® standard. With Apple’s announcement in January of a FHIR-based personal health record (Health Records) feature for users in Apple’s iOS Developer Program, Microsoft’s announcement in November of an open-source project for FHIR-based servers in Azure, and the expected December publication of a new version of the standard with finalized content, FHIR is becoming more widely adopted and accepted as the standard demonstrating true potential for HIT data exchange and interoperability.

Jeff Danford, Principal Software Engineer, Lead Developer for Innovations Development

(Read more from Jeff – HL7® FHIR® DevDays comes to the U.S.)

Our clients achieved some incredible outcomes. For example, Cleveland-based University Hospitals is addressing the opioid crisis with data-driven insights to identify opioid prescribing patterns and addressing areas of concern within the framework of a holistic Opioid Stewardship Program. Outpatient primary care opioid prescribing volume has been significantly reduced over the past 18 months. PIH Health (Whittier, California, U.S.A.) has markedly reduced, and in some months, eliminated hospital acquired venous thromboembolism (VTE). Methodist Hospital of Southern California’s dedication to patient safety drives outcomes in a number of areas, including its antibiotic stewardship and stroke care programs.

David Hurwitz, M.D., FACP, Medical Director, Clinical Analytics

(Read more from David – Opioid crisis: Many stakeholders, common themes)

Discovering quality improvements realized at one large health system in HIM, pharmacy, radiology, lab and acute clinical care – the list was amazing. Wearing 3D glasses to watch a simulated ambulatory visit, showing the importance of eye contact and sharing the screen with the patient during a physical exam. Realizing that some nurses at have no experience with paper workflows, as they explained bar-code enabled workflows and wondered aloud, “how else would you do this?” Sharing HIMSS Analytics Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) stories with a user group in Birmingham, England, and an uptick in interest with the new standards pushing leaders further.

Ellen Loch, RN, Senior Outcomes Consultant

(Read more from Ellen – What you need to know about EMRAM/O-EMRAM in 2018)

I am most excited about the shift in conversation from “we need more features” to “we need to make this easier to use.” Clinician dissatisfaction, and now burnout, has been real and growing for years now and finally is getting the attention it needs. This will allow us to take the time to make things easier and more helpful to the people that use our systems.

Carin Mann, RN, User Experience Clinician

(Read more from Carin – 5 things that can improve nurses’ satisfaction with EHRs)

Some of my favorite moments of the year include innovations that are truly centered around the needs of consumers. For example, the Allscripts-Lyft integration will help patients overcome transportation barriers, and our FollowMyHealth® solution has expanded its capability to communicate with patients via text, through our acquisition of HealthGrid.

As impressive as this list is, I’m sure it just scratches the surface of the many great strides made in 2018. Are there others you would add to this list?

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