EMR fails following power outage at VT hospital

Two months ago, FierceEMR highlighted how Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, VT, turned on a $57 million Epic Systems EMR, engaging the American Civil Liberties Union to help assure patient privacy and confidentiality. On Tuesday, the EMR failed following a power outage.

The Burlington Free Press reports that the power went out in the hospital at about 8:40 a.m. and returned about 40 minutes later. But the EMR remained offline until 5 p.m.--some seven-and-a-half hours after the lights came back on. A hospital spokesman was unable to explain why a back-up power system didn't keep the EMR going during the outage and said that Fletcher Allen will have to perform a "root cause analysis."

With the EMR down, the hospital was forced to reschedule elective surgeries, in addition to reverting to paper documentation.

For more information:
- see the Burlington Free Press story
- read the FierceEMR report from June