Southcoast Health launches new electronic health record system that will revolutionize how care is delivered
NEW BEDFORD, Mass. — Southcoast® Health announced today that it has launched a state-of-the-art electronic health record (EHR) system across all of its sites. The industry-leading software, created by Epic, will consolidate all of a patient’s medical information into a single record that can be securely accessed by a healthcare professional anywhere in the Southcoast Health system, which includes three hospitals – St. Luke’s Hospital in New Bedford, Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River and Tobey Hospital in Wareham - , two Urgent Care Centers, and over 400 physicians in offices across Southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island, as well as the Southcoast Visiting Nurse Association (VNA).
With easier access to patient information, physicians and hospital staff can quickly share information, so patients spend less time answering repeat questions or duplicating testing, cutting down on wait times, and allowing physicians to spend more one-on-one time addressing patients’ needs.
“We began this journey three years ago with our decision to make a major investment in our electronic health record as part of our commitment to improving the Southcoast Health experience and the way care is delivered to our patients,” said Keith A. Hovan, President & CEO of Southcoast Health. “Epic provides the benefit of having all of your up-to-date information available in one single record that can be accessed anywhere at Southcoast, and puts us in good company with top healthcare providers across the nation who have also chosen to go with this leading EHR system. We know this will empower our patients to become full partners in their own healthcare – now and in the future.”
This system-wide, integrated system contains and securely shares critical information such as a patient’s medical history, diagnoses, medications, treatment plans, immunization dates, allergies, radiology images, lab and test results, billing and scheduling information, and more.
Epic enables practitioners to work together seamlessly across Southcoast Health’s entire network of physician practices, urgent care, ambulatory clinics, home health and hospital services and provides a solid foundation that enables clinicians to deliver the best patient care possible.
“There are many ‘behind the scenes’ features that further enhance how we care for patients such as alerts related to medications or health risks,” said Linda Bodenmann, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Southcoast Health. “If a patient comes to the ER, his or her records from a recent physician office visit are available for the providers to view, medications or lab results will be readily available on the inpatient unit and by the primary care physician at the next office visit. Patients are notified when test results are ready and can view their record through MyChart. The possibilities are endless and so are the benefits.”
MyChart is Epic’s secure online health record for patients that is available to every patient who receives care at a Southcoast Health location.
Available on portable devices, including smartphones, and online through a personal computer, MyChart gives patients the ability to manage and receive their personal medical information, enabling them to become more active partners in their own healthcare. After signing up, patients will have 24/7 access to their medical information online, can stay in touch with their physician, renew prescriptions, manage their appointments and so much more.
Some of the features offered through MyChart are:
- Request medical appointments
- View their health summary from the electronic medical health record
- View test results
- Download immunization records and patient letters
- Request prescription renewals
- Access trusted health information resources
- Locate Southcoast Health providers
- Securely pay your bill online
- Communicate electronically and securely with their medical care team
Patient health information is exchanged securely, with access controlled through a series of secure activation codes. Patients are in control of their own password and account information on MyChart.
Patients can access the new patient portal by activating their account on their next visit to their Southcoast Physicians Group office or Southcoast emergency department. Once a patient is enrolled, it can be accessed from home by visiting MySouthcoastHealth.org and clicking on the MyChart icon.
Additional information on Epic and a video of the benefits of Southcoast Health’s new EHR is available at www.southcoast.org/epic/.