sutures newsletter


FDA Warns About Lenalidomide, Duloxetine Hydrochloride

Pharmacy Focus

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has issued warnings about the cancer drug lenalidomide and the antidepressant duloxetine hydrochloride.

Mark Your Calendar

Surgery Grand Rounds

Click the "read more" to see information about upcoming Surgery Grand Rounds.

Grand Rounds

Click here to view a schedule of all upcoming grand rounds.

Educational Schedule

Click the PDF link below to see the Department of Surgery's educational schedule.

Educational Schedule - November 2014 (PDF)

Surgery Scheduling

Click the "read more" for hours and contact information for surgery scheduling.

Share Your News

Know an interesting colleague we should profile? A story we should tell? Submit your ideas, meetings and events for consideration.

Click here to submit your news to Sutures

Pilot Allows Patients to See Progress Notes Online

Patients seen by one of 28 physicians participating in a new pilot called OpenNotes will be able to view their own progress notes in My CS-Link™.

Faculty and private practice physicians are participating in the OpenNotes pilot, which went live Nov. 11. When their ambulatory care patients have an office visit during the six-month pilot period, a note from their visit may be accessible to them as part of the after-visit summary in My CS-Link, after it is completed and signed by the physician.

Only completed notes written after the go-live date will be available, and physicians will be able to hide specific notes if they wish. Following the conclusion of the pilot, patients and physicians will be surveyed to assess their perceptions of OpenNotes.

OpenNotes is a national initiative designed to improve patient engagement by providing patients with ready access to their medical information, such as their progress notes.

Health systems that have implemented OpenNotes have reported positive effects on patient engagement. A study funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and conducted by investigators at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Geisinger Health System and Harborview Medical Center showed that 87 percent of patients read at least one of their notes, and more than 76 percent reported improvements in remembering their plan of care. Importantly, more than 60 percent reported better medication adherence.

"Patients want to have an open, honest dialogue with their physician, and that includes having real-time access to their medical records," said Sharon Isonaka, MD, vice president of Clinical Transformation at Cedars-Sinai.

"This level of positive patient response is consistent with national studies that demonstrate that improved patient engagement leads to better outcomes," Isonaka said. "Physician feedback has also been very favorable, and virtually every physician who participated in the initial OpenNotes study chose to continue offering it to their patients."

In addition to Cedars-Sinai, OpenNotes has been implemented at a number of health systems, including the Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, MD Anderson Cancer Center and Kaiser Permanente Northwest. Locally, UCLA Health System, Kaiser Permanente and Providence Health System are preparing to offer OpenNotes to their patients.

For more information, click the PDF link below for a physician FAQ on OpenNotes. You also can contact Isonaka at or visit for videos and links to articles on OpenNotes.

OpenNotes FAQs For Physicians (PDF)

Previously in Sutures:

Pilot Project Will Let Some Patients View Progress Notes (October 2014)