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Electronic Health Records Wave Spreads

St. John's Mercy Health Care and Christian Hospital implement system for quality, safety

Monday January 11, 2010
Christian Hospital RN Christine Bargiel,left, gets hands-on input from 'superuser' Jane Bunk, RN, regarding the new McKesson Horizon Clinicals documentation system that was implemented in October.
Christian Hospital RN Christine Bargiel,left, gets hands-on input from 'superuser' Jane Bunk, RN, regarding the new McKesson Horizon Clinicals documentation system that was implemented in October.
(Photo by Bret Berigan / Christian Hospital)
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Patient care at two St. Louis area healthcare facilities is more seamless and efficient with the help of new electronic health records systems.

St. John’s Mercy Health Care and Christian Hospital began using electronic records systems in late 2009.

“It’s really to improve the quality, safety, and continuity in the coordination of care,” says Christine Crain, RN, MSN, NEA-BC, executive vice president for clinical care.

The systems include barcode-scanning technology on patients’ bracelets that alerts nurses before administering a medication that hasn’t been ordered or should not be given. Nurses say the systems also could eliminate the need for paper charts and other paperwork that can get lost.

“What this does is it decreases duplicate documentation and streamlines processes and workflow, which allows more time with the patients,” says Gregg Liedtke, RN, MSN, clinical director of patient care services for Christian Hospital, part of BJC HealthCare.