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Does your digital rounding platform effectively integrate with your EMR?

In the last decade, the healthcare industry saw the rapid adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMR) which was spurred by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009. Today 95 percent of hospitals in the United States have adopted an EMR.

We often get asked, does the Nobl Rounding Platform integrate with our EMR?

The simple answer is, yes. But as the demand for digital rounding platforms rise hospitals should be asking much more than this when deciding to partner with a company. The act of being able to answer yes to this question should just be the beginning of the conversation. As a healthcare software company, we find it a privilege and take the task of integrating with the hospital’s EMR seriously. EMR integration should create meaningful data exchanges that ultimately provide insightful information at the moment of care for the users of our technology.

The better question is does your rounding platform integrate with our our EMR effectively?

Effective integration and interoperability with the EMR has an entirely different meaning than simply being able to pull in data from the EMR. Nobl drives effective integration with the EMR by providing patient health information to rounders to support quality improvement initiatives. According to a study performed by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology on average 82% of hospitals used their EMR data to support quality improvement. 96% of hospitals using Epic said they use the data to support quality improvement.

In order for a digital rounding platform to effectively integrate with an EHR, consider the following questions:


Frequency of data exchange


Not all healthcare software solutions require a real-time interface with the EMR. However, a digital rounding platform has to seamlessly interface with the EMR in real-time in order to capture the most recent patient census information. This provides users with real-time information at the point of care about the patient. Imagine how often beds turn over in your ED or on your busiest med-surg unit?  If your software is simply pulling in the midnight census, look elsewhere. If you’re just pulling in census once a day then it is likely some patients may never show up as an opportunity to be rounded on in the digital rounding tool.


How data is exchanged


Sending over spreadsheets of data doesn’t meet the benchmark for effective integration in this case. When looking at rounding platforms and how they exchange data with the EMR it’s crucial that data be exchanged through an HL7 interface using an interface engine. We partner with Interfaceware as our trusted solution provider for the task. 


History and experience with exchanging data 


Our interface engine has evolved as we continue to grow the list of EMR’s that we support. Ensuring the vendor has experience with the EMR vendor isn’t a make or break but do prepare to test longer if they don’t. We have seen that different EMR solutions send over HL7 transactions differently. And since the Nobl Rounding Platform thrives on real-time data from the health record it’s crucial that different scenarios are well tested out before go-live. Our interface can intelligently account for transactions like when the patient goes to surgery or is marked out of the room for lab work. The end user experience is better because the patient’s rounding data remains intact despite the complicated HL7 interactions that happen in the background when the patient gets transferred and serviced throughout the hospital.


We are no longer moving into the post-EMR world. Today is the post-EMR world, meaning most hospitals have already adopted an electronic medical record. The climate now is about hospitals and health systems using the data for quality improvement, monitoring of patient safety, and identification of high risk patients. For solutions like the Nobl Rounding Platform and countless other healthcare technology companies, it’s our responsibility to effectively interface with the EMR so that we can support our partners in improving the patient experience and increasing quality of care.

Written by Nobl Co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer, Katie Haifley.

Sources:

https://www.healthit.gov/sites/default/files/page/2019-04/AHAEHRUseDataBrief.pdf