The University of Kansas Hospital in Final Stretch for Region's Most Comprehensive Electronic Medical Records System

WESTWOOD, Kan. (May 10, 2011) - The University of Kansas Hospital will soon have the only single electronic medical record system in the region that not only handles all inpatient information, but will extend to every outpatient clinic operation affiliated with the hospital.

That assessment came at The University of Kansas Hospital Authority Board meeting from Chris Hansen, senior vice president and chief information officer of the hospital.

Hansen told the board the same medical record patients have in the hospital will be available in every affiliated outpatient encounter because of the unique relationship of a closed medical staff with The University of Kansas Physicians.

Hansen noted the hospital's investment was designed to build upon the hospital's already leading record of patient safety and quality of care.

"This entire program was designed to make patient care safer by preventing medical and drug errors. It requires a checklist of steps for thorough diagnosis and treatment, while providing essential information more quickly. Plus, it creates a clear record for research projects and allows us to analyze care patterns to enhance care even more," Hansen reported.

Hansen noted physicians, nurses and hospital staff helped design a program to warn of drug interactions and suggest best practices for care. He said the overall program has already saved money in transcription of physician notes, but other savings are possible through more efficiencies.

The electronic medical record program, nicknamed O2 at the hospital for "optimal outcomes," will eventually allow patient's access to their own records through a patient portal. The hospital is piloting a patient portal now with the Westwood Internal Medicine office.

The hospital also is cooperating in efforts to have a basic multi-hospital regional information record available to physicians no matter where a patient receives care.