VT hospital goes fully electronic, engages ACLU

Fletcher Allen Health Care in Burlington, VT, last week turned on a $57 million Epic Systems EMR, replacing paper charts in patient rooms, clinics and nursing stations. The eventual plan is to hook up affiliated medical practices, encompassing 750 physicians. The massive project includes computerized physician order entry and bar-coded medication administration. The health system soon will add a patient portals, which will offer personal health records and online scheduling capabilities, the Burlington Free Press reports.

Fletcher Allen allayed fears about privacy loss by giving the American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont a seat on an advisory committee that state regulators required the health system to establish. "I'm convinced they are trying to build in as much privacy and security as they can,"said Allen Gilbert, the ACLU representative.

To learn more about the Fletcher Allen EMR project:
- read the Free Press story