McKenzie County Memorial Hospital First in State to Receive Medicare Funding for Use of Electronic Health Records

EHR System Reduces Costs, Increases Medical Accuracy and Improves Patient Care

WATFORD CITY, N.D.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- McKenzie County Healthcare Systems (MCHS) today announced that McKenzie County Memorial Hospital is the first hospital in North Dakota to qualify for Medicare reimbursements for using a certified electronic health record (EHR). McKenzie County Healthcare Systems will receive the reimbursement from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services EHR Incentive Program. The program was created by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act to offer healthcare providers financial incentives for implementing and demonstrating meaningful use of an EHR system.

McKenzie County Memorial Hospital will be recognized for its achievement on Thursday, December 29, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. by the Regional Extension Center for Health Information Technology (REACH) at a ceremony at the hospital. The event will welcome the hospital into an exclusive group of leaders in the nationwide transition to electronic health records. McKenzie County Memorial Hospital is the first hospital in North Dakota to successfully attest to meaningful use, meeting the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requirements for successfully using an EHR to improve patient care. To date only one other hospital in North Dakota has attested to meaningful use.

“We are thrilled to be the first hospital in the state to reach this major milestone in a nationwide effort to modernize healthcare information technology, make the system more efficient and control healthcare costs,” said Dan Kelly, CEO of McKenzie County Healthcare Systems. “It’s a real testament to the quality of the staff that we have at the hospital as well as the Healthland EHR solution that we put in place. We’re looking forward to the benefits that the system will bring, like having a single patient chart throughout our system so staffs at the hospital, clinic, nursing home, and assisted living facility are all working from the same record with the same patient information. That’s really important for assuring quality patient care in a multi-facility healthcare system like ours.”

“Helping our clients achieve meaningful use has been a top priority for Healthland ever since the program was created,” said Jim Anderson, senior vice president of sales and services at Healthland. “Our clients are rural community hospitals that often don’t have the immediate capital resources to acquire an EHR solution. The EHR Incentive Program funding is often the only way they can implement electronic health records. The Healthland EHR is created specifically for rural hospitals to help improve efficiency, accuracy, and the overall quality of patient care. We are proud to partner with McKenzie County Healthcare Systems and we congratulate them on their milestone and their leadership in adopting electronic health records.”

EHR adoption incentives from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are offered to physicians, providers, and hospitals until 2015, after which the federal government may levy penalties for failing to adopt electronic health records. Hospitals can qualify for $2 million or more through the program, depending on the costs involved in implementing an EHR solution and upon demonstrating meaningful use of the system. REACH is a regional extension center created to help clinicians in Minnesota and North Dakota become meaningful users of EHR systems as defined by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

About McKenzie County Healthcare Systems
Located in Watford City, ND, McKenzie County Healthcare Systems is committed to serving the needs of our patients and their families, whatever they may be. McKenzie County Healthcare Systems was founded on July 1, 2004 with the merger of the Good Shepherd Home Corporation and the McKenzie County Memorial Hospital Corporation, consolidating all of the healthcare services in McKenzie County. The system is comprised of McKenzie County Memorial Hospital, McKenzie County Clinic, Good Shepherd Nursing Home, Horizon Assisted Living and Healthy Hearts Wellness Center. McKenzie County Healthcare Systems is committed to providing quality services, continuity of care, the assurance of qualified staff and family involvement for individual patients. For more information about McKenzie County Healthcare Systems, visit


McKenzie County Healthcare Systems
Daniel Kelly, CEO
[email protected]

KEYWORDS:   United States  North America  North Dakota

INDUSTRY KEYWORDS:   Technology  Data Management  Software  Health  Hospitals