• Aug 08

    Versio Staff

    Migrate Clinical Data Purposefully with Coherence, Transparency, and Inclusion

    by  Versio Staff

    The definition of and adherence to a strategy in specifically addressing the data to be moved is the first and most important part of a patient chart data migration effort. Migration of data from disparate sources – EHRs, paper charts, hybrids of both, etc. – requires a phased approach where consideration of the data must occur during each phase.

    Coherence, transparency, and inclusion are major elements that must be employed throughout the phases of the migration effort's lifecycle, applied against all of the requisite resources, documentation, and systems involved.

    Understanding What is Pertinent

    Once the decision has been made to migrate data, the success criteria for the endeavor must be identified. This provides an overarching guidance that will ultimately facilitate all of the considerations and handling of the data in a consistent and unified fashion.

    Here, it is imperative that these success criteria not be defined in a unilateral manner. While a data migration initiative may be led and enacted by a CIO and his/her department, the decision making must include all of the stakeholders who will ultimately be impacted by the data migration effort.

    The feedback from the clinicians and other end users of the data should be solicited, considered, and incorporated in the success criteria. Once the success criteria are established, more detailed business rules that dictate how the source data will translate into the target system can begin to be framed, developed, and specified.

    Getting a Handle on Your Source System(s)

    With the provisioning and adoption of the success criteria and business rules, hopefully much of the specification needed for the analysis and handling of the source data has been captured. At a high-level, identification of where the data to be migrated is and the disposition of that data has been established.

    The importance of leveraging system administrators and experts of electronic health record systems and/or clinicians for the specifics and vagaries in understanding the data in paper charts cannot be understated in grappling with answering these data questions for a given source. Guidance from these individuals – who have historically been closest to the data from the source system – will help to ensure that fulfillment of business rules is properly addressed.

    There may also be findings with the data that will require an adjustment to the business rules. Again, involvement with the stakeholders at this juncture is critical in keeping them informed and where applicable, allowing them to provide feedback in helping to refine and adjust the business rules further.

    The analysis of the source data can also provide an opportunity to standardize that data prior to its migration to the target system. Again, with the patient chart data coming from disparate systems, specialties, and providers/clinicians, this is a tremendous opportunity for an institution to apply uniformity around the migration data, priming the pump for a data governance model or fitting the data for future mining and/or analytics.

    Migration Strategy for Target System

    With a solid understanding of the source data informed through the analysis of the appropriate experts, an undertaking of the same effort needs to occur for the target or destination EHR system.

    Business rules will dictate how wanted source data will be translated to the target, while data requirements or specifications will outline the requisite format to which the data will need to be translated, transformed, or both, prior to the actual migration event.

    These documentation must be treated as a contract between the source and destination data experts. Each party's proprietary knowledge provides the deep understanding of the data necessary for any of the transformation, mapping, exception handling, etc., such that the integrity of the data (per the stipulated success criteria) is maintained.

    Upon migration, vehicles to provide visibility into the target EHR system – via custom reporting, monitoring, audits, etc. – will furnish stakeholders the means to verify the anticipated disposition or adjunct handling (e.g. caught exceptions) of the data.

    The Versio solution addresses stakeholder and organizational needs while providing a complete and accurate translation of the original clinician’s notes. Our consultation services are part of each project and we can facilitate these decisions throughout all planning phases.

    Contact us for a demonstration of our process and you can be one step closer to ensuring a successful EHR implementation: sales@myversio.com or 253-277-0505

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