At most previous launches of the Epic electronic health record (EHR) you would find a team of over 200 on site to support the launch. When St. Francis Hospital and Health Services began using the EHR at midnight on March 31, 2012, the Maryville hospital had that same support team– plus an entire community.
"The Maryville community I think feels a real part of it because they recognize it as a real advancement in health care," said St. Francis Hospital President, Gray Cox. "I think this community, we’re finding, is much more attuned to the advantages and possibilities of the electronic health record right from the beginning."
"They appear to be very proud of the fact that we are moving in that direction."
Cox says the EHR answers a tremendous need in the community and really improves the care for the patient.
He also recognizes the enormous effort that has gone into making this morning’s launch a success.
"When you think about the thousands of hours that have been associated with preparations and training for the EHR, it’s just mind boggling," he said. "The nice thing is seeing the incredible enthusiasm and engagement we’ve had here throughout the entire process."
In preparing for the launch, over 300 physicians, clinicians and hospital staff were trained to effectively use the EHR. Over the past few months, they have attended over 400 classes and practiced for countless hours.
St. Francis Hospital is the 14th SSM Health Care hospital to move into the EHR environment. Over a dozen St. Francis medical clinics also went live with the clinical, billing and scheduling functions of Epic. Maryville is the first SSM Health Care community to rollout the full spectrum of Epic functionality at both the hospital and clinics simultaneously.