NEW ORLEANS – Ochsner Health System is upgrading their current electronic medical record (EMR) to the industry-leading Epic software at all Ochsner Health Center locations in New Orleans and Raceland on June 28.
This new EMR will provide many benefits including improved quality of patient care, making it easier for physicians to communicate about individualized care, and allowing patients to securely access their own records 24/7. Online patient data will be available at every point in the care process and accessible across all departments and locations. If an Ochsner clinic patient is hospitalized for any reason, their hospital doctors will have access to essential information in the patient’s medical record regardless of the location -- a convenient feature as we enter hurricane season.
“This system provides one integrated medical record across all clinic and hospital operations-making it easier for our physicians and employees to provide exceptional patient care,” Chris Belmont, Ochsner’s chief information officer. “Staying at the forefront of health information technology is part of Ochsner’s continued success as a premier healthcare facility. We understand that this is quite a change and are doing everything possible to make this a seamless transition. We appreciate the patience and support of our patients in advance to this installation.”
During the transition, patients may notice the following changes:
- Physician visits will take longer for a few weeks as the staff becomes more familiar with the system. Therefore, more time will be allocated for appointments.
- There will be a new MyOchsner patient portal powered by Epic’s MyChart application, giving patients access to their medical record, test results, appointment scheduling, health education materials and even prescription refill requests 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They can even access their medical record on an iPhone or Android smartphone, just by downloading MyChart app.
- There will be separate bills from each region for a temporary time period. For example, if you see an Ochsner physician at Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans and a different physician at Ochsner Health Center in Baton Rouge, you will receive a separate bill for each. Once fully deployed at all Ochsner locations, patients will receive a single bill regardless of the location.
As part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) enforced by President Obama, it is federally mandated that all eligible professionals, hospitals and critical access hospitals participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs complete installation of EMR technology by 2014.
Ochsner will implement the new system by region over the next two years. For more information, visit www.ochsner.org/epic.
Ochsner Health System is southeast Louisiana’s largest non-profit, academic, multi-specialty, healthcare delivery system with eight hospitals and over 38 health centers in Louisiana. Ochsner has been named the Consumer Choice for Healthcare in New Orleans for 16 consecutive years and is the only Louisiana hospital recognized by U.S. News and World Report as a “Best Hospital” across seven specialty categories. Ochsner employs more than 13,000 employees, over 850 physicians in over 90 medical specialties and subspecialties and conducts over 300 clinical research trials annually. Ochsner Health System is proud to be a tobacco-free environment. For more information, please visit ochsner.org and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.