Wednesday, June 20, 2007

EHR Upgrade: One Month Later

I've been keeping track of what has stuck and what has been forgotten during the past month as the new application settles in a bit.

Here's what I've learned:

1) I've found that people only remember their most immediate concern. In an electronic medical record implementation - the most immediate concern is "How am I going to survive the clinic day?" Anything above and beyond that is forgotten.

2)I think our attempts to bring all of the departments onto the same page didn't work particularly well. I suspect it was a problem of context. First - they never did certain things (such as prescription order entry) in the old system so some baseline human workflow decisions (who was going to deal with what) were never made. Second - they were more concerned with surviving the clinic day.

3) Related to #2 - Trying to incorporate new functions when the product is so dramatically different from what the end-user is used to (and the product is still in beta) doesn't work. People are in survival mode the first couple of weeks. Anything new got lost in the shuffle. We are going to have to go back and re-train these new functions to each of the departments.

4)If I had to do this over again (and I pray I never do), I would spread the training out over 3 weeks rather than 2. 1 week for introduction to the user interface, 1 week for advanced clinic work, 1 week for administrative tasks (that training occuring during the go-live week so they can practice the information from #1 and not have their administrative items hanging out too long).

5) If we had more time, we really needed to have online materials available - particularly for the residents. Thankfully, the residents are fast learners.

6) I have no control over this - but having everyone do full clinics that week did no one any favors and proved nothing. Most of the docs were lucky to get some cancellations. It could have been much worse.

I'm hoping that if I have to do this type of project again - it is with a more fully realized application.

I'm not a huge fan of being the early adopter. Hence the name of my blog.
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If you want to read my diary about this implementation, see my archives for May.

1 comment:

Karyn Romeis said...

I witness with so much of what you relate here - it mirrors my own experience. Your #1 in particular is right on the money, in my view. Hence my shift to learner-driven just-in-time learning solutions.