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Østfold Hospital: Trust a world leader in clinical data systems

Østfold Hospital Trust scored 6 on HIMSS Analytics' Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) for measuring maturity in terms of adopting and using clinical data systems.

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Østfold Hospital Trust scored 6 on HIMSS Analytics' Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) for measuring maturity in terms of adopting and using clinical data systems. The result is the highest achieved in the Nordic region and among the best worldwide.

The analysis assesses how a hospital uses clinical IT systems and improves patient safety. In this project, we submitted the electronic curve solution, which represents the core system in clinical treatment. Its implementation put an end to paper records and gave doctors and nurses access to the right information stored in one place whenever they need it – a basic requisite for good patient treatment.

Thomas Færgestad, a clinical application specialist, has long experience in the health sector and played a key role in developing and implementing the curve solution.

- The solution is based on MetaVision, the global market leader in clinical information management systems, and covers important parts of the medication treatment and patient documentation.

The solution contains relevant clinical information summarised in specially designed images and provides doctors and nurses with comprehensive clinical decision support. For example, it notifies of allergies, adverse combinations or dosages of medication. This improves patient safety.

Change management should be part of the project

Thomas stresses that the most important part of any IT project is the people who are to use the system:

- There's little point in having the world's best solution if the hospital staff don't use it. The Østfold Hospital Trust's management has communicated a clear vision and set high goals and has managed to get the staff on board. We've met motivated employees who have made the adjustment, training and implementation easier.

There will always be variations between roles and units in any hospital, and it's important that the system supports them. At the same time, doctors and nurses must be taught to work in new ways if they are to derive benefits from using the new solution.

That's why we always recommend that change management is made an integral part of any planned change and in all phases of a project.

Thomas concludes with a brief status report:

- The electronic curve solution is currently being used in several hospitals in South-Eastern Norway Regional Health Authority, and in Northern Norway Regional Health Authority we're building on experiences gained from Østfold Hospital Trust and accommodating regional needs.

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