Doctor working on the EHR

Arch Collaborative Summit: Personalization and Efficiency Panel

Every EHR is incredibly complex. However, as clinicians mold it to fit their preferences and workflows, the EHR can be a helpful tool instead of a ball and chain.

Arch Collaborative results show that providers who report high personalization have Net EHR Experience scores more than 30 points higher than those who don’t, and any time and effort saved is a breath of fresh air for a clinician.

This is why KLAS set up a breakout session at the Arch Collaborative Summit focused specifically on increasing EHR personalization and efficiency. The following is some expert advice from panelists Eric Cheng, CMIO at UCLA Health; Jason Connely of Novant Health Medical Group; and Melissa Jost, Manager of Clinical Informatics at UC Davis Health.

Eric Chang and UCLA Health

UCLA Health doesn’t have a dedicated team that goes to the health system’s clinics to lead personalization seminars or the like; they have only 6 FTE physician informaticists spread through 25 physicians. But those few people pack a punch, particularly as physician builders.

Chang tries to leverage the EHR users that are the most respected in their individual service lines. “These people help with communication, standardization, and the adoption of tools and personalizations,” Cheng told Summit attendees. Residents are also a great resource for UCLA Health because they are excited to learn the EHR and cost little to use.

The health system has what they call a “Home for Dinner” program, which focuses on helping EHR users complete their documentation more quickly and achieve better work-life balance. This program has been especially successful with the low-but-not-lowest-performing group.

Cheng also shared wisdom about governance and budgets. “You have to learn to speak the language of the people who control the budgets,” he said. “I have to defend a program by showing the ROI.” The higher steering committee also plays a role. “Our CIO is very involved with the committee,” Cheng said. “Her presence and behavior help convey the importance of what we are doing.”

Jason Connely and Novant Health Medical Group

As a health system with 550 ambulatory clinics, Novant Health Medical Group has to make initial and ongoing training a top priority. “Training is hardwired into our onboarding process,” Connely said at the Summit’s breakout session. Each new ambulatory provider completes two days of initial training, which includes personalization labs.

New providers who have worked on Epic’s system before can test out of the initial training, but they are still encouraged to come to the personalization labs. “We want them to see our instance of Epic,” Connely said. These providers, like all of their counterparts, get follow-up training later on.

“There is a trainer, efficiency specialist, or someone like me covering each provider,” said Connely. “We have a ‘provider advanced course’ six to eight weeks after a provider’s start date; by then, providers know the system, how to navigate it, and which questions to start asking. Within 30 days of that course, we work with them at the elbow to look at their workflows and needs.”

Because the provider advanced course is required, Novant Health Medical Group sees high participation and a significant ROI. “We get better than a 75% return for advanced training,” Connely said. They also like to focus on their provider-builder program by institute or service line. “Our goal is to have a provider builder in every service line to make efficient workflows.”

Melissa Jost and UC Davis Health

Jost leads the UC Davis Health Physician Efficiency Program (PEP), which involves two trainers and one builder providing four hours of one-on-one EHR training for each physician. “Our program is a volunteer program, but we have about a 97% participation rate,” Jost told Summit attendees. “We have been able to see such huge gains.”

The team also works to optimize every area’s build. “For each specialty, we have a ‘point’ physician, a list of the personalizations that have been done in the past, and a framework based on that list. We ask people where they’re struggling the most and use our framework to help them.”

Scheduling the PEP training is a huge lift, so Jost and her team have had to be creative in garnering support from UC Davis Health’s leaders and end users. “We find out which physicians have really found value in the optimization items and ask them to be our champions,” said Jost. “I have those champions talk about their experiences at faculty meetings.”

Jost’s team wanted PEP’s success stories to reach even more people, so they attempted to create a marketing video. “It was terrible,” Jost admitted. “But I explained to our marketing team the story we wanted to tell and that we wanted it to come from the physicians.” The marketing team polished the video, which has since impacted many providers inside and outside UC Davis Health.

Happier Clinicians

As our panelists and many other providers have learned, efficient clinicians are happy clinicians, and not just because they can get home for dinner. Optimizing their use of the EHR helps them feel in control and good at their jobs. UCLA Health, Novant Health, and UC Davis Health are proof that helping clinicians personalize the EHR yields great improvements.

You can access the slides from this and other Arch Collaborative Summit breakout sessions to learn more details, including insights from Amy Chaumeton, the Clinical Vice President and CMIO at Legacy Health. And keep your eyes peeled for the Best Practices Guidebook coming soon!




     Photo cred: Shutterstock, NIKCOA