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A local internal medicine and cardiology practice has recently implemented their new EHR system from Allscripts. Some relatively minor building renovations were required, and additional hardware was installed. Extensive training sessions and onsite support staff spent several months meeting with all users. Superusers and managers were identified and given additional training. During the testing phases, there were several glitches that needed to be addressed. Because of the practice’s long-standing relationship with a local hospital, they had to electronically communicate seamlessly to coordinate ongoing patient care throughout the healthcare continuum. The EHR from Cerner is used by the hospital. Technology and software issues had to be addressed to ensure interoperability so that complete patient information was transmitted securely. The application of the HL7 messaging standards were evaluated for each system and then the firewall and encryption software were adapted to meet data integrity and secure transmission requirements per the required standards. The patient portal for the physician practice had to be coordinated with the hospital’s EHR so that patients were able to see information generated from their hospital admission. The cardiologists and internal medicine physicians were incorporating this information into their outpatient treatment plan. These issues have been addressed and care coordination has become more efficient thanks in part to the new electronic processes incorporated into both EHR system
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