For the past few years, electronic health records have been on the rise. With advanced technology and new procedures developed almost daily, health care providers need to be more in connection with each other. An organization’s workflow is comprised of the set of processes it needs to accomplish, the set of people or other resources available to perform those processes, and the interactions among them. One important reason that workflow is of pressing concern for today’s health care delivery is the introduction of new health care information technology (health IT) into clinical practice. Health IT promises many benefits for improving quality and efficiency, reduction in adverse drug events, utilization for preventive care, effects on chronic disease management and prevention, and easy coordination of care are just but a few benefits of implement an electronic health records. However, the introduction of health IT can be very disruptive to existing workflows in an organization. Health IT systems often implicitly assume a workflow structure in the way their screens and steps are organized. In closely following and taking care of patients, nurses are guardians of a rich source of information. This valuable information can be lost when poor workflows impede communication and coordination.
I worked in an acute facility that has 300 plus inpatient beds. It already has an existing electronic health record. Initially, no one was able to assess doctor’s order on a timely manner. This was a big problem; patients were getting their medication late and also were missing some of their scheduled tests. In a clinical environment, it is imperative that the team members receive these messages in a timely manner. How the information is delivered is important. If the only method for communicating with team members is on a stationary computer screen, then there is the potential that team members will not log in often enough to receive new information. Options must exist to support communication via additional devices, such as, pagers, and phones. The work flow design should be addressed to improve outcomes using;
Benchmarking: This is a tool used by organization to pick the best practice from other organization and applying them to your organization (United States Department of Health and Human services, 2013). This tool is used by many and has been proven valuable. My facility use CPRS for everything except passing medication. With medication pass, we use BCMA bar scanning. Evaluating how other facilities close by who use the same system are performing with workflow performance with help my organization to address the problem listed above.
Checklist: This is also a valuable to tool for each step of the process. Implementing a new electronic health records could be easy if all potential issues are listed and check once fixed. According to United States Department of Health and Human services (2013), checklist can be used to collect and review information easily.