By Jonathan French, Director, Healthcare Information Systems, HIMSS
HIMSS Davies Award Winner Mount Sinai Medical Center (MSMC) in New York has always been regarded as one of the top learning hospitals in the country; however, its use of paper charting left room for improvement. Using the motto “one patient, one chart,” MSMC’s leadership recognized that the use of an EHR could kick-start new reimbursement models, improvements in safety and quality, and accelerated research and innovation.
Once implemented, Mount Sinai began to track improvements in the quality of care. Thanks to process changes enabled by the EHR, patients suffering from conditions like heart attacks, heart failure, and pneumonia saw almost immediate improvements in care and outcomes. Using the EHR to coordinate care, MSMC formed a team of social workers called the Preventable Admission Care Team (PACT). This team uses the EHR to identify discharged patients who would benefit from care delivered in their homes, thus preventing readmission. The PACT team also provides education on healthy eating, escorts patients to clinics for follow up appointments, and monitors symptoms so patients can avoid a visit to the emergency room.
Measuring the amount of money saved through use of the EHR was not a critical focus of MSMC’s leadership team – their EHR was a critical infrastructure need. Still, MSMC’s cost reductions surpassed $20 million, with over $17 million coming from a decrease in transcription volume, along with savings from the overhead costs associated with paper records manually passed from department to department. Revenue grew as efficiencies occurred throughout the organization. Average monthly hospital collections increased by $27 million per month from 2007 to 2011. MSMC projects savings through year 2020 to surpass $108 million.
Mount Sinai now stands tall as a Davies Enterprise Award Winner and a HIMSS Analytics Stage 6 hospital. “The long term benefits of our new EMR system, which I consider the backbone of our care today, are far reaching,” said Kenneth Davis, CEO of Mount Sinai. “It enables new reimbursement models, improvements in safety and quality, and accelerated research and innovation.”
How has your organization measured return on investment for your EHR?