HealthLeaders Media IT - May 11, 2010 | Five Tips to Guide Your Hospital's Social Media Policy
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Five Tips to Guide Your Hospital's Social Media Policy
Gienna Shaw, Technology Editor

Hospitals are increasingly pulling their heads out of the sand when it comes to the social media activity of their employees, recognizing that they're active on sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube regardless of whether the IT department blocks access to them from work computers. Time to face facts: Employees post online comments from their computers at home and use their smart phones to update their Facebook status while at work. And yes, they're talking about your hospital online. [Read More]
May 11, 2010
Editor's Picks
Study: Bar Code Technology Reduces Medication Errors
Using bar-code technology can substantially reduce transcription and medication errors and prevent potential adverse events, according to a new study funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston compared error rates in order transcription and medication administration at an academic medical center before and after it implemented a bar-code electronic medication-administration system (eMAR). Of the 14,041 medication administrations and 3082 order transcriptions researchers reviewed, they noted 776 errors unrelated to timing on intensive care units that did not use the bar-code eMAR, compared to just 495 on units that had implemented the system—a 41.4% relative reduction in errors. The rates of potential adverse drug events of timing errors in medication administration also fell. [Read More]

Duke-Durham Partnership Uses Informatics to Redesign Health System
When Durham-based Duke University and the Durham, NC, community launched Durham Health Innovations in April 2009, they knew they were embarking on a groundbreaking project that would use medical informatics to identify chronic disease interventions and improve the health of patients. But at some point during the recently completed planning stages of the project, team members realized that they had stopped talking about patients-and started talking about communities. The project uses data from Duke's electronic medical records system. The university runs customized software that assigns geographic locations to the data, also known as geocoding. This HIPAA-compliant process lets team members look at areas of disease clustering. [Read More]

15 Communities Receive Grants for Health IT Adoption
Fifteen communities will get $220 million in grants to pave the way for the nation's ambitious health IT adoption efforts. The funds were set aside in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act last year and awarded through the Beacon Community Program, which aims to strengthen the health IT infrastructure in select communities. The lessons learned from these pilot programs will then be incorporated into nationwide strategies for EHR adoption. [Read More]

CDC, Premier Test Effectiveness of Infection Prevention Tool
A joint research initiative to test new technologies for predicting incidents of central line associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs) will be conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Premier healthcare alliance. The reporting of these adverse events will be automatically sent to the CDC's National Healthcare Safety Network. The initiative is based on the success of a pilot project of CDC's Prevention Epicenter Program, which identifies and evaluates effective healthcare associated infection prevention strategies with research through a network of academic centers. If the tool works, it would be used as part of a decision support process to flag potential CLASBIs events and to avoid additional infections. The tool also will be used to automate a more standardized method of HAI detection and to assist reporting to NHSN using data already used within existing health information systems. [Read More]

51 Healthcare Groups Call for Changes Of Federal EHR Adoption Proposal
The number of healthcare organizations asking for more time and flexibility to meet criteria of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' proposed electronic health record rule published earlier this year continues to grow. Most recently, a coalition of 51 groups said in a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that while they "fully support" the purpose of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to "encourage the adoption and use of EHRs, it should be done "in a manner that will remove barriers to and promote the widespread adoption of health information technology." [Read More]

Medical Center Warns 5,418 Patients of Stolen Health Information
The Medical Center at Bowling Green (KY) is notifying 5,418 patients of a breach of personal health information after the theft of a computer hard drive from the hospital's mammography unit. The hard drive contained data on patients who underwent bone density testing at The Medical Center between 1997 and 2009. "We have no reason at this point to believe the device was stolen for the information on it or that any personal information has been released or used," the hospital said in a statement posted on its Web site. [Read More]
Tech Headlines
Experts: Train Employees Not To Snoop; Fire Those Who Do
Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media - May 10, 2010

eHealth, Inc. Pays $28.7M for PlanPrescriber, Inc.
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - May 7, 2010

E-Pharmacy Catches Drug Mistakes for Rural Hospitals in Five States
Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media - May 5, 2009

Campaign Microsites No Longer Optional
Marianne Aiello, for HealthLeaders Media - May 5, 2010

Vending drug machine now fills prescriptions on the spot at Tennessee clinic
The Tennessean - May 11, 2010

Company plans to sell genetic testing kit at drugstores
Washington Post - May 11, 2010

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Tech to Boost Satisfaction and Patient Flow: Are long wait times in the ER hurting the patient experience at your organization? Denice Soyring Higman, RN, president and founder of Soyring Consulting in St. Petersburg, FL, discusses how hospitals can dramatically boost patient satisfaction scores with simple patient flow changes and by using clinical data to improve efficiency and productivity in the ER. [Listen Now]
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