Many HIM leaders today are being approached by their IT teams to support their facility’s effort to reach Stage 7 of the HIMSS EMR Adoption Model. For some HIM professionals, this may be a completely foreign topic, as IT teams often drive reaching stages 0 – 6. It is often not until attempting to reach Stage 7 that the HIM department is ingrained in the process.

Through the process of integrating an electronic medical record system and leveraging other advances in information technology, the Healthcare System has become a much more data-driven organization. Most importantly, by using these modern technologies when engaging patients and the medical community helps them understand how to deliver improvements in healthcare.

Research shows that technology investments in Healthcare organizations can be as much as 5% of their total operating expenditure, which means the pressure for HIT implementations to add value is greater than ever. The HIMSS Analytics EMR Adoption Model (EMRAM) provides a clear path and measures an EMR deployment’s impact on systems, providers and patients. This measurement allows healthcare leaders to strategically prioritize their technology goals by comparing their progress to industry best practices. Achieving an EMRAM Stage 7 has become the culmination of a successful implementation that shows how an organization has turned the idea of paperless healthcare into a reality.

US EMR Adoption Model

Stage Capabilities
Stage 7 Complete EMR, data analytics to improve care
Stage 6 Physician documentation (templates), full CDSS, closed loop medication administration
Stage 5 Full R-PACS
Stage 4 CPOE; Clinical decision support (clinical protocols)
Stage 3 Clinical documentation; CDSS (error checking)
Stage 2 CDR, Controlled medical vocabulary, CDS, HIE coapable
Stage 1 All three ancillaries installed – lab, rad, pharamcy
Stage 0 All three ancillaries not installed

Why CTI?

According to HIMSS Analytics, the most familiar challenges regarding reaching Stage 7 surprisingly still surround the use of paper medical records. To be validated as a Stage 7 hospital or practice, all clinically relevant information must exist electronically in the EMR within 24 hours of creation. This still proves to be the biggest hurdle for most healthcare facilities because this must be proven throughout the entire facility. If clinically relevant information is found in one area that is more than 24 hours old and does not exist in the EMR, the healthcare facility will not pass the Stage 7 requirements.

In today’s health care industry, Hospitals and Health Care providers are choosing outside experts to handle the processing of clinically relevant information, either by scanning the back-file of medical records and/or processing day forward information as soon as the Point of Care / Point of Service visit has taken place.

Saving money is the key in outsourcing. By outsourcing to a company like CTI, the cost and time to process medical files and day forward documents dramatically goes down while the time for healthcare providers and staff to provide patient care goes up. More patient care equals more revenue for Hospitals and Health Care providers.