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Clinical System Selection Update

Opportunities Added for Medical Staff Feedback in Clinical System Selection

By John G. Harold, M.D., & William W. Brien, M.D.
Co-Chairs, Physician Advisory Team, Clinical System Selection

We're almost there in our efforts to select a proven clinical system that will encompass Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE), Electronic Medication Administration Record, Multidisciplinary Clinical Documentation, Pharmacy and Decision support. But there's more to do before a final decision can be made, and your participation will be an important part of the process.

At their recent meetings, the Physician Advisory and Care Delivery teams, along with the Steering Committee, agreed to narrow the field of vendors to Eclipsys and Epic, based on a number of factors, including: feedback from those who attended the software demonstrations; an assessment of vendor responses to the RFQ; a preliminary technology evaluation, and a company profile review.

Since neither vendor has emerged a clear-cut leader at this point, the final selection decision has been delayed until September 2007. This will allow for an even more detailed analysis of each system's technical capabilities, operational impact and implementation considerations in order to identify the system best suited to meet the needs of Cedars-Sinai clinicians.

Many members of our medical staff have invested countless hours and energy throughout the system selection process and have been integral to getting us this far. Their efforts are greatly appreciated, but it is even more important now to include the viewpoints of those among us who have not actively participated to this point. Getting feedback from a broader spectrum of our medical staff is imperative to making the best decision -- a decision that will have a significant impact on each of us for many years to come.

The next steps in this process begin with offering our medical staff and other clinicians a hands-on experience at the desktop -- to personally touch, test and rate the systems based on your individual practice needs. This will not be a demonstration or a Q&A session, but rather a real-life experience that will allow you to see how the systems differ and how each might impact your own daily work. Details will follow, but please note on your calendars that Epic testing will occur on July 17-18, and Eclipsys on July 19-20. We strongly encourage you to attend one of these drop-in sessions.

At the same time, CSHS (with support from the IBM Healthlink team) will take a much closer look at each system's integration considerations and implementation approach, as well as the operational issues identified in the process thus far. The due diligence will involve intensive reference checks and possible site visits to academic medical centers similar to Cedars-Sinai.

Further details about the hands-on testing opportunities, as well as information about the process and its progress, will be available in future editions of Pulse, but please feel free to talk with one of your Physician Advisory Team members at any time to share your thoughts or ask questions. Click here to access the Physician Advisory team list. You may also email the Director of Clinical Systems, Beth Hallman, at: Elisabeth.Hallman@cshs.org.