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Health Quality Learning Group monthly call - Electronic Medical Records
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When: 3rd Wednesday of the month
10-11am eastern
Where: 218-844-0840, 493732#

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Health Quality Learning Group monthly call.
The monthly calls support a Learning Network of people who want to explore new ideas, approaches and methodologies to address quality issues in service delivery, and improve the experience of patients and their families.

August 17, 2011 - 10-11am eastern

Implementing Electronic Medical Records with Michael Griffis

Where is your hospital in the journey to implement electronic medical records? Thinking about it, beginning the change, new system up and running? Some, like hospitals of the VA Healthcare System, have been digital for a long time.

Michael Griffis will join the August Health Quality call to share his experience leading a successful implementation at Tucson Medical Center. He will introduce us to the hospital, talk about "our Epic EMR implementation,” improvements made post-implementation, what it means to have a Stage 7 designation, and plans for the future. Meet some of the players on video.

Bring your questions and your experience with EMR to this conversation!

Michael Griffis, who joined TMC in 2004, is Director of Applications Services for Tucson Medical Center, a 650-bed nonprofit hospital serving Southern Arizona and Northern Mexico. Griffis provides direction to five applications teams supporting all IT Applications at TMC including Epic, 3M and PeopleSoft. Working with the chief information officer, Griffis provides enterprise wide leadership to the hospital.

In June 2010, under Griffis’ leadership, TMC successfully implemented a cutting edge electronic medical record system (EMR) & replaced a legacy patient accounting system. In June 2011, TMC was awarded Stage 7 by HIMSS Analytics for their adoption of technologies implemented the prior year.

Griffis has led key organizational projects including clinical documentation for Emergency Department physicians, radiology imaging system (PACS), case management system, ERP upgrade, supply chain automation and the organization’s budget system. Griffis is also trained and served as a Six Sigma Black Belt at TMC where he managed several key process improvement initiatives; achieving significant improvements in treatment times for emergency heart attack patients, and medication delivery times.

Prior to joining Tucson Medical Center, Griffis worked with the Hoffman E-Commerce Lab at the University of Arizona; was co-founder of MeetAnytime, and was project manager for AppNet Systems in Washington, DC. Griffis holds a Masters of Science in Management Information Systems at University of Arizona in Tucson.

UPDATE from Michael Griffis Mar 1 2012: 

Anyone who has spent much time around me in the last couple years has inevitably ended up standing around the kitchen, the dock, or the back patio discussing healthcare, technology & how to improve how we deliver care. The healthcare industry itself is insanely complex and when we talk about how to improve or change it, that complexity is reflected probably two or three fold (maybe more). There are many diverse thoughts on the topic, however one thing that most (although not all) agree on is that our current path is not sustainable - action is required. As a continuation of our discussions I wanted to share a couple things with you, if I may be so bold <grin>.

First, a transcript of a speech given by Don Berwick last December. Dr. Berwick is the outgoing Administrator for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Service (CMS), and prior to that he was the CEO of the Institute for Health Improvement (a non-profit focused on improving quality in the healthcare industry). Dr. Berwick has called for the "Triple Aim" as a way to improve care delivery AND reduce/control the healthcare spend to put us on a sustainable trajectory. In his words to achieve this we need to focus on three things:

  • Improve the health of the population;
  • Enhance the patient experience of care (including quality, access, and reliability); and
  • Reduce, or at least control, the per capita cost of care.

If you're interested, it is a good read for anyone from healthcare worker to concerned citizen. For me it serves as a beacon and reinforcement that we have to keep pushing ... even when it is difficult.

Second, over the past couple-three years I have been involved in an initiative to form a different kind of healthcare organization called an Accountable Care Organization with the mission of quite simply taking on the "Triple Aim." Our work is on the leading edge of making positive and needed changes in healthcare in the US and is initially focused on our Tucson community. Recently I have been asked to lead the technology & analytics initiatives for our Accountable Care Organization, called Arizona Connected Care. I will continue to work closely with Tucson Medical Center (which is a critical part of our initiative & new organization), but my role & scope will change to focus on our new endeavor. Change is needed and I am very proud to be part of it. All my contact info is still the same so feel free to reach out anytime -

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