Implementation of Electronic Medical Records

Our hospital is, like so many others, contemplating which of the many EMR systems we will choose to meet the federal mandate.  Our entire clinic and hospital staff members are very concerned about how this will go.  Three years ago we attempted implementation of an EMR clinic package that would save us time and money in our operation of the clinic.  The resulting debacle almost closed the clinic, and cost the organization so much that it took us over two years to recover.  We not only had to recover the money lost while we tried the conversion, but had to spend the last three years regaining the confidence of the community and rebuilding our clientele. 
We learned that it is well worth the time and effort to look at multiple systems, be very clear on what the product will deliver, and make sure that direct on site support is available during the start up and beyond if needed.  Buy in from all staff involved is also imperative.  This time around we will definitely take our time, get many different points of view, and assign a team to be in charge of implementation when it happens.

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