Healthcare is a world of continual change and adaptation. The conversion from one clinical/financial/pharmacy system to another system, while focusing on patient care, impacts the entire organization. Such a conversion requires investment in resources, capital, and time. It can result in a re-engineering of your workflow processes and optimizing the delivery of patient care within the constraints of the new system.
In the white paper entitled Healthcare System Conversions – Key Points To Consider, we outlined three types of conversions (System Upgrade, New Platform/Same Vendor, and New Platform/New Vendor) and five points to consider when planning for a system conversion.
- Version Upgrade (Same Vendor)
- Conversion to New Platform (Same Vendor)
- Conversion to New Platform (New Vendor)
Conversion to New Platform (Same Vendor)
Since your current team has been focused on the “legacy” product, your organization may not have the skill set or resources to assign to the project. Leverage outside professionals to maintain and optimize the current system while utilizing their talent to implement the new solution.
Where/How to Engage Outside Resources:
Maintenance of Current Application:
There are routine daily, weekly, and monthly maintenance activities in which the organization engages. Outside resources can support the hospital staff with the following:
Recommended Daily/Weekly Maintenance
- Validate that weekly scheduled tasks have been completed
- Validate that day-end processing has been completed
- Review and manage error queues
- New drug additions
- New order sets, predefined orders built
- NDDF/Multum updates installed, reviewed, and implemented
- Management of change control process
- Development of change control processes and domain management
- Training and documentation on the core use of the system (knowledge enhancement)
- Reporting development for Meaningful Use requirements and system optimization
- Developing alerts and rules
- Measuring utilization of the orders and order sets
- Are the order sets being used by the providers? If not, why not? Is there a training issue? Do the order sets need to be modified for more effective utilization?
- Improving drug order search — grouping like orders together, unassigning orders that are part of a larger order set to clean up the “clutter” in the order search
- Integrating evidence-based practice into the order sets
Implementation Support of New Application:
Leveraging experienced outside resources for the build provides value to the organization. These consultants have experience with the new application and a very short start-up curve. These consultants can help the organization with the following:
- Workflow mapping
- Build and implementation
- Testing — unit and integrated
- Development of training documentation
- Training of end-users
- Go-live support and troubleshooting
The ideal firm has consultants with experience on the existing platform, as well as experience with the implementation and use of the new platform. Leverage these resources to identify optimization opportunities for the existing platform and engage them in the design of the new application with this optimization in mind.
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