e-MDs Plays Leading Role in Developing University of Texas Health Information Technology Program

Austin-based EHR vendor shapes curriculum for Health IT Certificate courses.

AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- e-MDs, an industry leader in the development and implementation of electronic health records (EHRs) and practice management (PM) solutions, is proud to be playing an integral role in the creation of a very successful Health Information Technology (HIT) Certificate program at The University of Texas at Austin (UT).  e-MDs' senior management team was involved in the launching of the program, and e-MDs' CEO, Dr. Michael Stearns, served on the program's curriculum committee.  e-MDs donated their current EHR platform, Solution Series™ integrated EHR/PM system, to the University's Heath Information Technology Summer Certificate Program as part of the company's continued commitment to education and workforce development.

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The program was sponsored in part by a $2.7 million federal educational grant received through the Professional University Resources and Education for Health Information Technology (PURE HIT) consortium project.  The inaugural program graduated its first class of 54 students this summer and is one of the first federally funded workforce development programs to have successfully trained professionals who have subsequently found employment in the health information technology industry.   Twenty one of the 34 students who were eligible for employment have been hired by the HIT industry and 7 have been hired by e-MDs.

The funding from PURE HIT will enable the development of four health information technology programs at UT including:

  • the summer Health Information Technology Certificate for recent graduates,
  • a Health Information Privacy and Security Certificate for computer science students,
  • a Public Health Informatics Certificate for public health students, and
  • a Health Information Technology Sub-Specialist Certificate for graduate students.

e-MDs donation of Solution Series™ integrated EHR/PM system allowed this summer's students to gain invaluable skills and experience using an EHR solution in clinical settings.  The students applied the system in the Health Information Technology Laboratory in the Clinical Education Center at University Medical Center Brackenridge, a member of the Seton Family of Hospitals.  Beyond donating software, e-MDs has supported the establishment of an HIT program at the University for several years.  Dr. Michael Stearns, CEO of e-MDs, has participated in the structuring of the program's curriculum which focuses on fundamental concepts of HIT, project management and workflow redesign, operational models of healthcare practice and skill development in the use of various EHR systems.  

"We're grateful to e-MDs for their strong support of our program," said Dr. Leanne Field, Health IT program director at The University of Texas at Austin. "Dr. Stearns helped with curriculum development, lectured, and hosted 17 students for their practica at e-MDs. e-MDs personnel also assisted students in the Health IT Learning Laboratory, judged research posters, and helped students practice their interviewing skills. It's corporate partnerships such as this that have made our program a success."

"This has been a great experience for everyone involved," stated Dr. Stearns. "Our primary goal was to provide skill sets to recently graduated students that would improve their chances of being employed by the health information technology industry.  Many of them have already been hired, which has been very rewarding.  The UT Austin program benefited markedly from contributions from many other individuals and organizations including Texas State University, the Texas e-Health Alliance, the Texas Medical Foundation and several hardware and software vendors," continued Stearns.

Click here for more information on UT's HIT programs.  

About e-MDs

e-MDs is a leading developer of health care software solutions headquartered in Austin, Texas.  The company, founded in 1996 by a primary care physician, remains physician and clinical informaticist managed and actively participates in national health information technology and interoperability efforts. e-MDs Solution Series™, with more than 28,000 users nationwide, is the standard for affordable and integrated EHR and PRACTICE MANAGEMENT software solutions, including clinical, financial and document management modules designed to automate medical practice processes and chart management. e-MDs Solution Series version 6.3 is a CCHIT Certified® 2008 Ambulatory EHR additionally certified for Cardiovascular Medicine and Child Health. The e-MDs Solution Series' comprehensive suite of products facilitates improvements in clinical care, a reduction in medical errors, and optimization of business practices. As testimony to our focus on ease of use and functionality, e-MDs has ranked at the top of all independent, unbiased, physician surveys thus far. For more information, please visit www.e-mds.com.