A first in 50 days: Reaching HIMSS Stage 6 and making history
Rewriting regulations, building the first fully digitized hospital in Australia, and making health information technology history: St. Stephen’s has only been open for two months, but it’s already making a big name for itself – as the first HIMSS Stage 6 hospital on the continent.
The 96-bed hospital opened in mid-October and already boasts 85 percent CPOE adoption – a sign of the technological advances it brings to the seaside city. St Stephen’s Hospital Hervey Bay (SSHB) aims to continue to serve as a proof point for the clinical benefits of an integrated EHR in Australia.
SSHB, working with its parent company, UnitingCare Health (UCH) and Cerner, agreed patient safety must be paramount above all else. Therefore, even during the hospital planning stages, the groups chose to follow the HIMSS guidelines to reach Stage 6.
Within 50 days of opening the doors at the Queensland hospital, SSHB reached HIMSS 6 – the first and only site in Australia to do so. It was also the first site in HIMSS history to get an on-site visit for Stage 6. “All the leaders in health care from around Australia,” said Richard Royle, UCH Executive Director, “are coming to look at this hospital as the future of health care.”
To reach Stage 6, SSHB adopted technology Australia had never used, including the first unit dose dispensing and full closed loop medication process. Some advances SSHB and Cerner delivered required regulatory changes at both a state level and at the Australian federal level.
In all, SSHB has 29 Cerner solutions and 20 devices integrated into the EHR. Click on the image to watch some of Cerner’s solutions in action in this December 2014 YouTube video from SSHB.
“Here at St. Stephen’s, they have the latest and greatest in clinical devices,” said Trish Liebke, eHealth Project Manager, UCH. “At the end of the day, that means the patient gets better, quality care, and the safest care we can provide them.”
Dr. Monica Trujillo, CMIO of UCH agrees that digital technology elevates patient care to a new level. “It is the one place where I can see all the information related to my patient,” she said in the video, “in real time, when it just happened - and actually see what is the best course of action for my patient.”
“St. Stephen’s represents the future of health care in this country,” said Royle. And SSHB isn’t finished yet: by the end of 2015, it hopes to be the first HIMSS Stage 7 hospital in Australia.