News Feature | December 23, 2013

Realizing Efficient Medication Administration

Source: Health IT Outcomes

By Wendy Grafius, contributing writer

HTO Billings Clinic

Montana Clinic realizes improved efficiencies in medication administration workflow with ADC, EHR integration

Billings Clinic, of Billings, MT, has successfully integrated Omnicell’s automated dispensing cabinets (ADC) with Cerner’s Millennium EHR, via the CareAware iBus. As the first hospital to complete this collaboration, Billings Clinic has realized improved efficiencies in medication administration workflow. Future plans at the facility call for interoperability efforts between the two vendors to include supply and anesthesia systems.

Omnicell is a leading provider of automation and business analytics software for patient-centric medication and supply management. Collaborating its ADC with the Cerner EHR allows nurses at Billings Clinic to issue, view availability and waste medications in a single view – both of which save time and enhance patient safety. “We are delighted to collaborate with Cerner to provide customers like Billings with interoperable solutions that will improve the quality of care for their patients and ease the workflow for caregivers,” said Jorge Taborga, executive VP of engineering at Omnicell. “Interoperability that allows access to information from multiple sources and systems across the care continuum has become increasingly vital to improving care coordination.”

Also an industry leader, Cerner offers an array of information software, professional services, medical device integration, remote hosting, and employer health and wellness services. Its CareAware iBus platform is the core component of the CareAware connectivity architecture, acting as the USB for healthcare devices to quickly connect medical devices and manage two-way communication between those devices and the EHR. “The Omnicell and Cerner teams have done tremendous work to develop an interoperable solution that saves steps in the medication process, all facilitated by the CareAware iBus platform,” said Randy Lantz, VP of engineering for Cerner DeviceWorks. “We look forward to continuing to execute on our roadmap with Omnicell to develop additional value for our customers.”

A recent West Health Institute report stated that improving interoperability between medical devices and EHRs in hospitals such as Billings Clinic could result in savings of more than $30 billion per year due to increased productivity and reduced adverse events, not to mention enhanced patient care and safety. “At Billings Clinic, one of our primary missions is to ensure that we get medications to our patients safely and efficiently,” said Kyle Townsend, director of pharmacy at Billings. “We are excited to be a partner with these two leading healthcare technology companies to find innovative ways to improve our medication delivery and demonstrate the efficiencies that interoperability is bringing to healthcare.”

Billings Clinic is a nonprofit healthcare organization anchored by a downtown campus which houses a 272-bed hospital with Level III Neonatal ICU and Level II Emergency and Trauma Center. Also onsite is a surgery center, inpatient cancer care unit, research center, and the region’s largest multi-specialty group practice with 46 specialties. Branch locations include Billings Clinic Heights, Billings Clinic West, and Aspen Meadows, a 90-bed skilled nursing and assisted living facility. Serving residents in 40 counties in central and eastern Montana and northern Wyoming, the system includes additional primary and specialty-care clinics in five surrounding communities. A member of the Mayo Clinic Care network, Billings Clinic is Joint Commission accredited and was recognized for Magnet-designation for nursing excellence by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. Its ICU is the only facility in Montana or Wyoming to receive the Beacon Award for Critical Care Excellence.

SOURCE: PR Newswire