Medsphere, Silver Hill Hospital Collaboration Yields Behavioral Health Enhancements to OpenVista® Electronic Health Record

Open source system now enables mental health care teams to collaborate electronically on treatment planning, improving patient satisfaction and compliance with government regulations

CARLSBAD, Calif. & NEW CANAAN, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The development partnership between Medsphere Systems Corporation and Silver Hill Hospital this week produced the first built-from-the-ground-up innovation of Medsphere’s OpenVista® electronic health record (EHR) specifically for behavioral health hospitals. Designed in close collaboration with clinicians at Silver Hill, the OpenVista Multidisciplinary Treatment Plan (MDTP) coordinates mental health care across members of the care team and supports patient progress management, eliminating the need to scour and cross-reference a library of paper records. The new MDTP module enables better, more integrated, patient care through improved access to patient information from a variety of sources.

For individual members of the treatment team, MDTP provides an immediate high-level account of the most pressing and relevant patient care issues. The first integrated treatment planning module built on the OpenVista platform, MDTP fits seamlessly into clinical workflows and enables clinicians and other care team members to plan, coordinate, and document individual components of the care plan and track progress toward overarching goals; MDTP also uses plan update prompts and notifications to support treatment team compliance with regulatory requirements. These enhancements will become available to Medsphere’s other behavioral health customers as a standard OpenVista module in future iterations of the system.

“When delivered effectively, healthcare is a collaborative process in which professionals work toward a common goal that serves the needs of the patient. Medsphere and Silver Hill Hospital have embraced that ethic as a cornerstone of our work together,” said Medsphere President and CEO Irv Lichtenwald. “The Multi-disciplinary Treatment Plan is the product of a very successful collaborative process that will, ultimately, benefit patients at Silver Hill and other mental health hospitals. In Silver Hill, we are fortunate to have a genuine partner that is fully engaged in the development process, allowing us to leverage the value of open source. ”

With Medsphere’s unique subscription-based business and developmental model, the company works closely with individual partner hospitals to develop new functionality and enhancements to OpenVista that are then incorporated into subsequent releases and made available to all customers moving forward at no additional cost. Medsphere also performs quality assurance and system testing of appropriate customer-developed enhancements before folding into later releases of OpenVista.

“In addition to the comparatively low cost of the system, what initially attracted us to Medsphere and OpenVista was the open development process MDTP represents and the fact other psychiatric hospitals can benefit from our work,” said Silver Hill President and Medical Director Sigurd Ackerman, MD. “We had regular input throughout the project and shared equally in brainstorming and decision-making. I really think this is how health IT solutions will be developed in the not-too-distant future. We feel like we’re on the cutting edge here, certainly for behavioral health if not the broader healthcare industry.”

The MDTP module is live at Silver Hill Hospital and will be incorporated into OpenVista releases later in the year. It is the first of several OpenVista development projects to be released this year through the collaborative efforts of Medsphere and the company’s hospital partners.

About Silver Hill Hospital

Silver Hill Hospital is an 81-year-old, not-for-profit psychiatric hospital in New Canaan, CT, with acute crisis stabilization and longer-term residential Transitional Living Programs for those with mental illness. Silver Hill sees 3,000 patients each year, providing treatment for psychiatric disorders that include addiction, eating and bipolar disorders, depression and schizophrenia. Many hospital patients present with multiple psychiatric conditions, and the Chronic Pain and Addiction Center is specifically designed to treat those with the dual disorder of prescription addiction and physical pain. Silver Hill is an academic affiliate of the Yale University School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry.

About Medsphere and OpenVista

Founded in 2002 and based in Carlsbad, Calif., Medsphere Systems Corporation is an award-winning organization of clinical and technology professionals working to make quality health IT solutions accessible to organizations of virtually any size, shape or budget. Medsphere’s OpenVista® is a portfolio of clinical support products and professional services that leverages an electronic health record (EHR) system developed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. This VistA EHR is widely credited with helping transform the VA into the nation's most efficient and clinically effective healthcare organization. OpenVista, the most fully commercialized VistA offspring, is a responsible reapplication of the VA’s $8.5 billion investment, which recent studies show have yielded $3.09 billion in benefits, primarily from the near elimination of medication administration issues and duplicate testing.

Medsphere’s subscription-based pricing model enables hospital, clinic and integrated delivery network customers to pay for OpenVista from their operating budget with no upfront costs or back-end balloon payments. Expert implementation and other services facilitate fluid and rapid transition to a paperless clinical environment focusing on best practices and evidence-based medicine in six to nine months. Medsphere also actively nurtures the Healthcare Open Source Ecosystem, a global community of customers, partners, developers and other online collaborators who drive OpenVista innovation, and provide a parallel development and support structure.

Learn more about Medsphere’s OpenVista at


Medsphere Systems
David Macfarlane, 760-692-3751
[email protected]
Stalwart Communications
David Oats, 858-750-5560
[email protected]

KEYWORDS:   United States  North America  California

INDUSTRY KEYWORDS:   Technology  Data Management  Practice Management  Health  Mental Health  Managed Care