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by Cerner Corporation
Published on January 14, 2019

The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS) has selected Cerner to implement a new electronic health record (EHR) at its 13 facilities across the state. This agreement provides DBHDS with a health care IT platform that will help doctors, nurses and staff as they work to support individuals by promoting recovery, self-determination and wellness in all aspects of life.

“While our people are the backbone of our facilities, a robust EHR is the nervous system. It is one of the most powerful and informative health care resources we have,” said S. Hughes Melton, MD, MBA, commissioner, DBHDS. “Our collaboration with Cerner will help modernize the Commonwealth’s state mental health hospitals’ technology and will greatly improve the health care we provide to Virginia's most vulnerable citizens.”

DBHDS, a state agency of the Commonwealth of Virginia, will transition to Cerner Millennium®, a health care IT platform designed to support and engage consumers through their health care journey across different venues of care. A digital record that brings together each patient’s health information from different care venues will benefit doctors and nurses with an up-to-date view of a person’s well-being. For staff to have the context of a patient’s mental and physical health history, hospitals need the tools to connect data across their own organizations and with other providers and agencies throughout the region. Connecting the dots of a person’s well-being is crucial when providing care to those with urgent behavioral health needs or in mental crisis.

“It is extremely important that state agencies like DBHDS are able to share patient information throughout their own organization, but they also need the tools that make it easier to connect with other providers and agencies in the region to support a wholistic view of a person’s well-being, regardless of where they receive care,” said Dan Schipfer, vice president and general manager, US State & Local Government, Cerner. “Understanding a person’s mental and physical health will give DBHDS providers the ability to effectively address the patient’s needs and help them live a healthier life.”

Mental and physical health are equally critical in building healthy lives and stronger communities. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, it is estimated that 1 in 5 adults in the U.S. will experience a mental disorder or depression in their lifetime. Cerner solutions support health systems to connect both of these aspects of a person’s well-being for providers to help people live healthier lives.