48-Hour status update
After months of planning, testing and training, the MiChart project met its original June 13 go-live date. Nearly 1,630 staff are using MiChart clinical applications in the Emergency Department, Taubman Adult Otolaryngology and University Health Service. Health Information Management is also using MiChart for Release of Information and Deficiency Tracking.
It takes teamwork
Jeffrey Desmond, service chief for emergency medicine, said MiChart provides new advantages that will continue to improve the care delivered by providers and departments in the Health System.
“Resilience, engagement, enthusiasm, effort and teamwork are the key characteristics that made the MiChart go-live so successful. This is the single largest change we have ever undertaken, and it is going tremendously well,” Desmond said. “While we have had challenges, I am impressed not by the problems, but by the way in which we have pulled together to address and solve the issues that have arisen. I think we significantly changed the way we work together in order to complete this scale of project in the time allotted.”
The Taubman Adult Otolaryngology clinic and University Health Service are piloting the MiChart Ambulatory (EpicCare) application, which will go-live in all outpatient areas later this summer.
“The tremendous amount of preparation on the part of the MiChart project team, IT staff, our clinical staff and many others has resulted in a relatively smooth transition to a state-of-the-art electronic health record that will result in improved patient care,” said Jeffrey Terrell, M.D., associate chief medical information officer. “As a provider, I feel confident that I can perform safer, more effective care of my patients because I have better documentation and ordering tools available.”
Terrell credited the camaraderie of Otolaryngology clinicians and staff as a contributing factor in the department’s success. “I’ve never seen our department pull together as a team so well. I am so incredibly proud to be part of the talented and dedicated team within UMHS and our department.”
His sentiments were shared by University Health Service leadership. Robert Winfield, UHS director and U-M chief medical officer, said “The first two days of MiChart implementation have gone very well. While staff anxiously anticipated the conversion, there were relatively few surprises.”
MiChart brings enhancements to research
The recent implementation also included some enhancements for clinical research, including directly assisting with clinical trials.
“Within 90 minutes of go-live, MiChart had already autonomously identified a potential study candidate in the Emergency Department, paged a study coordinator in Neurology and provided a brief online report to their study team,” said John Younger, M.D., associate chair for research emergency medicine. “The team was able to discuss research participation truly within minutes.”
In mid-August, this capability will be available to researchers throughout the Health System. As of last week, there were 18 additional studies with tools being developed by the MiChart Research Application Coordinators.
“It’s going to be very cool,” Younger said.
Hands-on support during the go-live
More than 200 Super Users and other “at-the-elbow” personnel have been dispatched to provide hands-on support to end users over the next several days. The MCIT Service Desk is also providing 24/7 support at 734-936-8000, option #1.
“The at-the-elbow support have been incredible,” said Tamara Miller, Otolaryngology clinical care coordinator and MiChart Super User. “As you use the system more, you have more questions and they’ve been so helpful giving us different tips.”
Next steps and going forward
UMHS began using MiChart in February 2012 for patient registration, scheduling, billing and HIM coding. This summer, MiChart will implement Ambulatory (EpicCare), the outpatient clinical application, in all remaining Ambulatory Care clinics and some Hospital Outpatient Departments (HODs) as part of a multi-year initiative to develop a fully integrated, electronic patient health record.
MiChart was purchased by Epic Systems Corp. in July 2010 to replace or augment hundreds of clinical, research quality and business applications that were developed or purchased over the past two decades. The system also enables the institution to meet the federal government’s goals for meaningful use and use ICD-10 coding.
Stay informed and learn more
During the stabilization period, technical teams will identify and correct glitches. The MiChart project team is communicating all open and resolved issues, workflow reminders and training tip sheets in a Daily Flash email, which can be viewed at michart.org.
Learn more about MiChart at www.med.umich.edu/i/michart.