• Nov 05

    Versio Staff

    Avoid Data Migration Disaster

    by  Versio Staff

    “EHR replacement is on the rise. According to a KLAS study, the number of organizations replacing EHRs increased from 30 percent to 50 percent last year. Another survey by Software Advice states that the number of physician providers replacing EHRs grew from 21 percent in 2010 to 31 percent in 2013, mainly due to dissatisfaction with initial systems.” This is a quote from an article by Sean West, VP of HealthPort Data Conversion Services, as featured on hitechanswers.net recently.1

    Mr. West makes several excellent points in this article, but perhaps his most valuable statement is that one of the most costly pitfalls is the failure to populate the new system with the patient’s historical information. In fact, we would say that failure to populate the new system is THE most costly mistake!

    We have made this point many times ourselves but it certainly bears repeating. Clinics face lost productivity – perhaps never getting back to their pre-switch levels – which can cost thousands in lost revenue every month. Patients suffer from longer wait times as the records are updated. The staff struggles under the burden of additional work keying in data to stay ahead of appointments.

    But, the potential for patient harm puts all other costs far behind. Without accurate data in the right discrete fields, medication contraindications, pre-existing conditions, and allergy alerts (among others) will not be available. This lack of critical data puts patients at risk every time a procedure is planned, a new drug is prescribed, or sudden illness requires the patient to be treated by a different caregiver.

    For successful data migration, planning is the key:

    • Involve stakeholders early on and engage experts to determine what data will be moved and what will be archived.
    • There are several discrete data sets critical for patient care and safety: allergies, medications, and problem lists are particularly important, but there are other data points that will enhance care and productivity such as vital signs and immunizations.
    • Determine which patients are considered “active” to save costs of migrating records for patients that are unlikely to be seen in the system again.
    • Work with your data migration provider closely to create Business Rules for overcoming the data inconsistencies within the legacy system prior to moving them. Since not all inconsistencies can be overcome with Business Rules, it’s best to choose a data migration company with the methodology and a proven track record for near-perfect quality.

    When you do decide to make an EHR switch, keeping these points in mind will save time, money, and potential lives; allowing you to focus on keeping your patients healthy and alive.

    Versio is a healthcare technology company specializing in legacy data migration, with a proven track record of 100% data capture and 99.8% quality. We call it “No Data Left Behind.” For more information on Versio’s services or to schedule an introductory conversation, please visit us at www.MyVersio.com or email sales@myversio.com.

    1West, S. (2014, July 9). Three Strategies to Avoid a Data Migration Disaster when Switching EHRs. Retrieved October 13, 2014, from http://www.hitechanswers.net/guest-post-sean-west/

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