A1. Advantages and Disadvantages of a System
All health information systems (HIS) come with great advantages and some disadvantages that must be taken in account to keep patients safe. A HIS is a system that captures, retains information, and helps manage it. A HIS can be used to send health information within an organization and outside of the organization. Several items within a healthcare organization have interoperability with the HIS such but not limited to: x-rays, IV pumps, laboratory data, and vital machines can all be directly linked to the HIS. A big advantage of the HIS is that it makes patient information easy to find from several locations. Interoperability is having the various systems in the healthcare organization sharing information and working together. A patient can have their blood work results available inside the hospital to view and can also be viewed by another health care provider that is at home if needed. Another advantage of this HIS is that some of the documentation can be completed in real time depending on how the HIS is set up. A great benefit of the HIS is that you can view a patient’s medical records remotely rather than having to carry around a paper chart. Another advantage of the HIS is the ability to exchange patient information that will in turn increase patient safety. For example, a healthcare provider can view an abnormal x-ray from home and place orders to start the needed treatment. In addition, without the HIS, the healthcare provider would have to come into the hospital and physically find the x-ray. This would cause a delay in treatment.
Health information systems usability
There are primarily 6 categories that can be used to evaluate HIT usability and they are:
Whenever the HIS system lacks in any of the 6 categories then the system will experience some form of disturbance in some area. In extreme instances the system could even get rejected. In order to comprehend usability more, it is indispensible to understand the working environment of the healthcare clinicians. Clinicians intermingle with HIS in ways that are fundamentally different from the way information workers interact with HIS.
HIS is designed to enhance safety and efficiency of the processes of healthcare. Systems like the pervasive devices for computing and electronic records have a record of improving safety in the healthcare environment. Research reveals that the design used in running such systems especially for user interface design may be linked to incidences of escalation of some other error types (Minshall, 2013).
The main disadvantage with usability is the time spent in training clinicians to handle the new system. Challenges of Complex Adaptive Systems may also contribute to the unwillingness to accept change.
Health information systems interoperability
HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society) defines interoperability as a description of the levels for which devices and systems can converse data and interpret the shared data (HIMSS, 2018; HIMSS, 2018b). In order for systems to become interoperable it must be possible for them to converse data and following that, present the data in such a manner that is understandable to the user.
Interoperability in the in healthcare industry means the capacity for computer systems and software to share and transmit data from essential sources such as the clinic, laboratory, medical practice, hospital and pharmacy.
Data exchange standards and schema should make it possible for data sharing among clinicians, pharmacy, hospital, patient and lab without respect to application vendor. The working together of HIS across and within organizational boundaries with an objective of advancing efficiency in healthcare delivery defines interoperability. HIS interoperability has three essential levels.
· Foundation level: Through interoperability of HIS the exchange of data from a particular IT system into another receiving IT system is made possible. It matters not whether the receiving system has ability to interpret the transmitted data.
· Semantic: Through interoperability it becomes possible for more than one system to transact information and apply such information that is already transacted. Semantic interoperability makes good use of data exchange structuring and data codification. This includes the vocabulary used so that IT system receiving such information can have capacity to interpret it. This interoperability level makes possible exchange of summarized patient information electronically among the clinicians and such like authorized parties through imminently HER systems as well as other systems which improve efficacy, efficiency, safety and quality of healthcare services.
· Structural: Interoperability helps define format or structure of exchanged data in instances where healthcare data takes uniform movement form a particular system to the other in such a manner that operational purpose or clinical purposes and data meaning is unaltered and preserved. Structural interoperability explains data exchange syntax. It makes sure that the exchange of data between IT systems becomes interpretable at the level of data field.
Importance of HIS interoperability
Safety in healthcare transitions: healthcare continuity is fundamental for patients notwithstanding whether chronic conditions are involved or whether the situation is acute with a number of health providers. Through interoperability there will be safety in healthcare transitions. This will contribute to enhanced patient outcomes for all.
Enhanced efficiency: healthcare interoperability is meant to help enhance efficiency. Whenever data gets presented consistently without regard to source it becomes much more easy for clinicians to quickly diagnose a matter through the decision making process with respect to treatment.
The disadvantage with interoperability of HIS systems in healthcare is the unwillingness by healthcare practitioners to apply the systems. Quinn (2015) references a research conducted in the U.S. According to the research, 33% healthcare practitioners recorded use for electronic health records in the sharing of patient information. 40% healthcare practitioners use electronic healthcare records although they do not transmit patient information through the EHR systems. IT would appear the HIS systems even though recommended healthcare practitioners…HIS.
John Hopkins Hospital HIS Evaluation plan
John Hopkins Hospital just launched an advanced control center for the hospital. The command center for capacity command is known as Judy Reitz. It is built and designed with partnership from GE Healthcare Partners (GE). The command center uses the most advanced methods in predictive analytics, innovative solution to problems and predictive analytics for the better management of volume, experience and patient safety alongside management of patient movement into and outside the hospital. This enables better access to life saving practices in john Hopkins (GE Healthcare Partners, 2018). The CCC (Capacity Command Center) details the engineering systems principles commonly seen within many complex industries like in aviation, aerospace and power generation. It is surprising that the healthcare industry with highly critical patient information has yet to integrate the HIS tools (GE Healthcare Partners, 2018).
The CCC technology helps staff members remain informed around the clock on issues such as patient influx, the hospital units that require more members, the number of patients undergoing treatment, the necessity and availability of in-patient beds in the entire hospital, priority discharge and admissions, and such like essential information. This will help guarantee quality of healthcare for all visiting patients (GE Healthcare Partners, 2018).
From the start of the CCC for John Hopkins there has been a number of visits from different countries and from across the entire country. Preliminary results show that patient operational outcomes and patient experience has essentially improved in areas such as:
· Transfer of patients from different hospitals: John Hopkins has seen a 60% increase in its capacity to receive and manage patients undergoing complicated conditions from different hospitals in the region.
· Operation room: the delays in transfer from operation rooms following a medical procedure has gone down by close to 70%
· Emergency Department: Patients get bed allocation 30% quicker following a decision to admit them from an emergency department. The transfer of patients after bed allocation is also 26% faster.
· Patient discharges: There are 21% more patients who get discharged before 12PM in comparison to previous statistics (GE Healthcare Partners, 2018)
System Evaluation plan
As referenced in the John Hopkins hospital case the success of any HIS will be evaluated by answering the following questions:
· Has the HIS system improved hospital capacity?
· Has the system alleviated delays in patient admission?
· Has the system enhanced activities at the emergency department?
· Has the system improved the rate of patient discharge
· Has the system reduced the number of hospital fatalities related to inefficiencies?
· Has the level of satisfaction among patients improved?
It can be ascertained from a careful interrogation of Jon Hopkins Hospital CCC that HIS are beneficial in many ways. They can help increase the efficiency levels of a hospital facility tremendously and within a limited period of time. While it may be surprising why the hospital…
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