CHICAGO, Jul 16, 2002 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ —
Wisconsin’s Largest Healthcare System Implements TouchWorks to Enhance Patient Safety
Healthcare Solutions (Nasdaq: MDRX), the leading provider of point-of-care
decision support tools for physicians, announced today that Aurora Health Care
(Aurora), the largest not-for-profit health care system in Wisconsin, will
implement a number of TouchWorks(TM) mobile clinical applications. Aurora’s
decision came following a successful initial deployment at eight Aurora clinics
with the TouchWorks Rx+(TM) e-prescribing module for 60 physicians. Aurora will
now expand e-prescribing to over 300 physicians as well as roll out additional
functionality, such as TouchWorks Charge(TM). Aurora cited patient safety and
speed of implementation as key reasons for selecting Allscripts.
Patient Safety is Top Priority: “A Blueprint for the Nation”
Aurora chose TouchWorks software for its ability to improve patient safety, a
primary concern for practice groups across the country. According to the 2000
Institute of Medicine report, “To Err is Human,” as many as 98,000 patients die
per year due to medical errors. By automating their physicians with TouchWorks,
Aurora will leverage leading edge technology to help their physicians prevent
medication errors and deliver improved care to their patients.
“The care and safety of our patients is paramount,” says Eliot Huxley, M.D.,
president of Aurora Medical Group, which provides care at 75 clinics throughout
eastern Wisconsin. “TouchWorks represents a significant part of our response to
rising national concern over medication errors. The Institute for Safe
Medication Practices has called for eliminating handwritten prescriptions by
2003. I have no doubt that our success could be a blueprint for the rest of the
Patient safety has also been the focus of several health care watchdog
organizations. The Leapfrog Group, a coalition of over 100 public and private
employers, focuses on saving lives and reducing preventable medical mistakes
through technology. Recently, Leapfrog has focused on computerized physician
order entry (or CPOE) technology, and currently is preparing recommendations to
extend these safety measures to doctors’ offices.
“We’re excited to partner with an organization which demonstrates real
leadership on patient safety, a critical public health issue,” stated Glen
Tullman, Chief Executive Officer of Allscripts Healthcare Solutions. “Aurora
based much of their decision on the patient safety benefits, clearly a
reflection of their commitment to the patients that they care for.”
Technology Improving Patient Safety and Service
Aurora physicians will use TouchWorks e-prescribing software on handheld devices
(the Compaq iPAQ Pocket PC from HP) to bring this technology to their patients
at the point of care. The system works in real-time through a wireless network
connected to central computers and printers within clinics allowing physicians
to use these pocket-sized computers wherever they work. The TouchWorks Rx+
application will help prevent medication errors by automatically checking for
drug and food interactions, allergies, and compliance with the patient’s
insurance provider guidelines. TouchWorks automates the time consuming process
of reviewing patient history and patient specific formulary as well as prepares
the prescription in a legible format. The end result – TouchWorks saves the
patient time at the pharmacy, co-payment dollars, and most importantly improves
the level of medical care the patient receives.
“The system enhances patient safety with a three-pronged approach – it
eliminates doctor handwriting, tests for drug to drug interactions, and tests
for patient drug allergies or possible adverse reactions,” explains John Schwab,
M.D. an internist at Wilkinson Medical Clinic in Hartland, one of the sites
involved in the initial deployment. Dr. Schwab was instrumental in evaluating
the new program. “In the past, if I had 45 different patients with 45 different
insurance plans, then I had 45 different drug formularies to review. The new
system does it automatically. It’s a huge step forward.” Using TouchWorks Rx+,
physicians see a message pop up on their handheld device that alerts them to
contraindications or possible problems with the prescription they are writing.
This alert allows physicians to modify their prescription accordingly at the
point of care, saving time for the patient at the pharmacy.
The e-prescribing software automates many tasks, allowing physicians to spend
more time with their patients. Copies of the electronic prescription
automatically become part of the patient’s medical record and the system can
also immediately send the prescription to a pharmacy of the patient’s choosing.
Additionally, the clarity of electronic prescriptions can reduce the large
volume of telephone traffic to and from pharmacies that currently occurs in many
clinics related to questions about individual prescriptions, which can
unnecessarily delay a patient at the pharmacy.
“Pharmacy wait times should be much shorter, and may be eliminated entirely,”
according to John Gates, R. Ph., district manager for Aurora Pharmacy. “Ideally,
your prescription would be ready when you arrive.”
Return on Investment
The TouchWorks suite of applications will also help Aurora save money for their
patients and health care overall. According to the 2000 Institute of Medicine
report, “To Err is Human,” for every dollar patients spend on prescription
medication, health care overall (including providers and payors) spends an
additional dollar, on average, to pay for treatment related to medication
errors. Aurora believes that in addition to the savings realized through
increased efficiencies, there will be significant savings to consumers and
payors associated with the prevention of medication errors.
TouchWorks will integrate with Aurora’s current IDX practice management
software. Aurora Healthcare has utilized IDX Systems Corporation’s IDXtend(R)
business performance solutions, including Billing and Accounts Receivable and
Enterprise-wide Scheduling, since 1997.
About Aurora Health Care
Aurora Health Care is a community-owned Wisconsin health care provider and a
nationally recognized leader in efforts to improve the quality of health care.
Wisconsin’s largest not-for-profit health care system, Aurora encompasses Aurora
Medical Group with more than 500 physicians practicing in clinics and health
centers across eastern Wisconsin, 13 hospitals, 90 community pharmacies, the
state’s most comprehensive home health and family service agencies, and several
long-term care facilities and retirement communities. With more than 20,000
employees serving patients at 230 locations, Aurora Health Care also is
Wisconsin’s largest private employer. Aurora has care sites in more than 75
communities throughout eastern Wisconsin.
About Allscripts Healthcare Solutions
Allscripts Healthcare Solutions is the leading provider of point-of-care
decision support solutions for physicians. The Company’s TouchWorks software
products enhance physician productivity using a wireless handheld device or
desktop workstation to automate the most common physician activities including
prescribing, capturing charges, dictating, ordering labs and viewing results,
providing patient education, and taking clinical notes. The Company also
provides medication fulfillment services. Additionally, Allscripts provides
patient compliance and healthcare product education services for physicians
through its Physicians Interactive(TM) unit. Allscripts provides services to
over 20,000 physicians across the U.S.
Strategic partners include IDX Systems (Nasdaq: IDXC); IMS Health (NYSE: RX);
Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT); HP (NYSE: HPQ); Express Scripts (Nasdaq: ESRX); and
TouchWorks, TouchWorks Rx+, TouchWorks Charge and Physicians Interactive are
trademarks of Allscripts Healthcare Solutions. Visit Allscripts on the Web at
This announcement may contain forward-looking statements about Allscripts
Healthcare Solutions that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements are
developed by combining currently available information with Allscripts beliefs
and assumptions. Forward-looking statements do not guarantee future performance.
Because Allscripts cannot predict all of the risks and uncertainties that may
affect it, or control the ones it does predict, Allscripts’ actual results may
be materially different from the results expressed in its forward-looking
statements. For a more complete discussion of the risks, uncertainties and
assumptions that may affect Allscripts see the Company’s 2001 Annual Report on
Form 10-K, available through the Web site maintained by the Securities and
Exchange Commission at www.sec.gov.
MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT – Click Here
SOURCE Allscripts Healthcare Solutions, Inc.
CONTACT: Dan Michelson, Vice President of Marketing of Allscripts
Healthcare Solutions, 800-654-0889, Ext. 4330, or
Copyright (C) 2002 PR Newswire. All rights reserved.