Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) has been recognized as one of the Most Wired Hospitals and Health Systems of 2013, according to the results of the 2013 Most Wired Survey released in the July issue of Hospitals & Health Networks magazine. The survey was conducted in cooperation with McKesson Corporation, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives, AT&T and the American Hospital Association (AHA).
The nation’s Most Wired hospitals and health systems are leveraging the adoption and use of health information technology (IT) to improve performance in a number of areas, according to Health Care’s Most Wired 2013 Survey. As a field, hospitals and health systems are focused on expanding and adopting IT that improves patient documentation, advances clinical decision support and evidence-based protocols, reduces the likelihood of medication errors, and rapidly restores access to data in the case of a disaster outage.
“We are very proud to again be recognized as one of the Most Wired health systems in the U.S.,” says Carol Burrell, President and CEO of NGHS. “Information Technology is a key focus for our health system and we have made significant investments to protect and engage our patients.”
Health Care’s Most Wired Survey, conducted between Jan. 15 and March 15, asked hospitals and health systems nationwide to answer questions regarding their IT initiatives. Respondents completed 659 surveys, representing 1,713 hospitals, or roughly 30 percent of all U.S. hospitals. Of those, 289 met the criteria to be named Most Wired; NGHS is one of four health systems in Georgia to make the list.
“The concept of health information exchange is absolutely correct. We need to do it and do it in a robust, refined way,” states Russell P. Branzell, president and CEO of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives. “The answer here is standards, standards, standards. We need to standardize the entire process, which we’ve done in almost every other business sector.”
“The healthcare industry has been slower than other industries, such as banking and travel, to evolve technologies that engage and connect the patient, but we are finally seeing progress in updating information technology in the healthcare realm,” adds Allana Cummings, NGHS’ Chief Information Officer. “NGHS is leveraging healthcare information technology to enhance and deliver the highest patient care for our community in the most efficient way.”
This year marks the 15th anniversary of Health Care’s Most Wired Survey. During that time, hospitals and healthcare systems have made great strides in establishing the basic building blocks for creating robust clinical systems aimed at improving patient care. This year’s Most Wired Survey also covered some new areas such as big data analytics and patient generated data. An emerging practice, big data analytics look at large amounts of data to uncover patterns and correlations.
“This recognition speaks highly of Northeast Georgia Health System’s reputation, our investment in information technology, and our ability to continually strive to provide the latest equipment and technologies to the community we serve,” says Burrell.