“Mind the Gap!” in Care Coordination

Posted on behalf of Alyssa Semple, Regional Sales Manager

Anyone who has ever been on the United Kingdom’s rail system is familiar with the phrase, “Mind the Gap!” to alert you (incessantly) of the large and looming gap that needs to be crossed in order to safely transfer between the rail car and the platform. While no one ever tells you what would happen if you don’t “Mind the Gap,” it’s pretty clear that falling into that wide crevice would result in a negative experience.

I tend to look at gaps in care coordination the same way. You never really know what you’re in for if you fall into a gap in care – and more importantly – you’re often not even told to be mindful of it. But if it happens, you know it’s likely not to result in positive healthcare outcomes.

What is Care Coordination?

Care coordination is terminology that has buzzed around healthcare discussions for years now. It seems to mean different things to different people, but Meaningful Use is working to herd the masses into some form of standardization. As someone who has worked for over 15 years in Healthcare IT, provides direct care services with a community-based hospice organization, and as the child of a chronically ill parent, my area of interest lies in the marginal ability to address the gaps that exist between hospital events and follow up care.

I have seen and experienced my share of health systems with disparate EHRs and disconnected community providers. In these familiar scenarios, the reality of care coordination has all too often depended upon the diligence of physician office, sub-acute facility staff or even the patient to request records from a hospital, resulting in some sort of faxing or manual exchange of information. That is, if a request is even made. All too often, nothing is done. The patient is discharged and no one is the wiser. Yet, study after study has shown that providing coordinated care from the emergency room visit and hospital admission to discharge and follow-up outpatient care reduces readmission rates, improves patient outcomes and lowers healthcare costs. How to accomplish it in an efficient, proactive way is still alluding the industry.

So, how do you strike the balance between regulatory mandates, provider and consumer needs? You’ll need a framework to accomplish the following:

Promote Care Coordination

Enhance care team engagement between patient, primary care provider, referring provider, care coordinator and/or other team members through notification of a patient’s significant hospital event. This is not just about providing an alert to a responsible provider, but also making the information available to office staff, who are able to take action through scheduling of follow up visits, etc.

At the same time, this functionality will help organizations meet the proposed Meaningful Use Stage 3 requirements for improving the delivery of patient care though real-time electronic notification, and will position an organization for new payment models and ACO shared savings.

Reduce Re-Admission Rates

Through targeted alerting, organizations can prevent potential penalties by providing appropriate follow up care, provide better patient outcomes, and maximize reimbursements.

Lower Healthcare Costs

Integrated care team engagement allows for faster follow up and cost reductions through medication reconciliation, proactive post hospital care and patient education.

Summit Provider Alert

Summit Provider Alert provides electronic delivery of notifications and corresponding data of significant hospital events sent in real time to known members of a patient’s care team, accomplishing the items in the above framework.

By sending actionable information to a patient’s care team, your organization is allowing for the promotion of care coordination, follow up, and reducing re-admissions, ultimately contributing to your organizations’ bottom line and allowing you to remain competitive in the marketplace.

There are many possible scenarios and use cases to execute this type of technology, and Summit Healthcare is the group to help you do just that.

 

Posted in Business Continuity, Healthcare Systems Integration, Interoperability, MEDITECH, Uncategorized, Workflow Automation | Tagged , | Leave a comment

There’s a FHIR in the House, Don’t get Burned

Posted on behalf of Paul J. Actis, Vice President, Research & Development

FHIR DEFINED

There’s a new integration standard in town, and it’s heating up the whole valley.

FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) takes the best of the existing protocols (HL7 2, HL7 3, CDA…) and brings them into the modern world of healthcare integration.  FHIR presents a number of advantages over the current set*:

  •  A strong focus on implementation – fast and easy to implement (multiple developers have had simple interfaces working in a single day)
  • Multiple implementation libraries, many examples available to kick-start development
  • Specification is free for use with no restrictions
  • Interoperability out-of-the-box– base resources can be used as is, but can also be adapted for local requirements
  • Evolutionary development path from HL7 Version 2 and CDA – standards can co-exist and leverage each other
  • Strong foundation in Web standards– XML, JSON, HTTP, OAuth, etc.
  • Support for RESTful architectures and also seamless exchange of information using messages or documents
  • Concise and easily understood specifications
  • A Human-readable wire format for ease of use by developers
  • Solid ontology-based analysis with a rigorous formal mapping for correctness

FHIR’s closest standard, HL7 v3, did not gain wide acceptance, one of the reasons because of its design by constraint paradigm.   FHIR takes a totally different approach in using the 80/20 rule.   This states that inclusion of data elements (resources) which are most common under normal implementations will be part of the standard and any other custom content will be defined as extensions.

FHIR TODAY

The healthcare interoperability industry is definitely taking FHIR seriously. Numerous initiatives seem to be sprouting daily.   The Argonaut project, SMART on FHIR and, Sync for Science just to name a few. FHIR is being used by over 20 countries and 150 organizations.

While FHIR is gaining broad acceptance, its biggest competitor HL7 v2, has been around for almost 30 years.   Its simplistic model and wide implementation base means v2 will be around for quite some time.  So don’t look for FHIR to replace it, but supplement it as market evolves to meet the needs of the new technology infrastructure.   Mobile, web services, and cloud-based applications is where FHIR’s strength will be most implemented.

FHIR, however, is still in its infancy. It is in its second rendition of Standard for Trial Use (DSTU).  The third draft is set for 2017 and Normative for some time in 2018.  During this time period before Normative, the FHIR specification is subject to change so that is something to be aware of as you are working through your own FHIR initiatives.

Summit and FHIR

As a leading provider of healthcare integration, Summit is committed to be at the forefront of this technology. FHIR is an integral part of our new web and exchange platforms.  Provider Alert implements numerous FHIR resources for its report generation process which will allow for quick onboarding of new document types.  FHIR fits in very well with Summit Exchange’s extensible architecture, providing another transport for data exchange without all the complexity.    FHIR can also be processed within our current Express Connect product.

*https://www.hl7.org/fhir/summary.html

Posted in Business Continuity, Healthcare Systems Integration, Interoperability, MEDITECH, Uncategorized, Workflow Automation | Tagged | Leave a comment

Small Details That Make a Big Difference in a Downtime

Posted on behalf of Terry LaPointe, VP, Client Services

From a Client Services perspective, we come across many organizations who have done a great job implementing an electronic downtime process to handle scheduled or unscheduled downtime of the HCIS or Network.

However, while many have addressed the major components of a downtime plan – downtime procedures established and downtime application in place – there are a few small details that could have a big impact to how smoothly the downtime experience is for your organization.

Let’s put a few of these small, but impactful details into a few discussion buckets; Physical, Procedural and Educational impact points.

Physical Impact

Power Please!

Chances are, if you have a downtime solution deployed, there are one or more physical “downtime client(s)” on the floor at key locations receiving encrypted downtime reports on a regular basis. BUT, have you reviewed with your Hospital Plant Operations/Maintenance Team if those physical downtime clients are plugged into an emergency power outlet that is on a generator or UPS?  Downtimes come in many flavors, maybe it is just the HCIS down for maintenance, but what if you lose power and the pc is dead in the water?

Dotty about Downtime!

It may seem silly, but something as simple as a red dot sticker on a pc can send a calming reminder to the end user: Downtime reports here! Using a simple sticker system, coupled with end user education, the red dot can lead the user to the designated downtime workstation(s) and remind them to keep them online to receive refreshed reports.  Some clients use a colored keyboard, some a sign on the wall or use a sticker over the power button, reminding users not to turn this workstation off!

Procedural Impact

No Network? No Problem!

If your downtime solution utilizes Active Directory (AD) for end user authentication and stores the downtime reports on distributed downtime machines on the floor, we recommend an authentication contingency plan outlined in the event of a network outage. If the network/AD is down, and if cached AD credentials are not an option, no need to panic if the downtime solution has the ability to use local, non-AD emergency “Break the Glass” user(s) to get to the downtime reports.  Don’t stop with the creation of the emergency accounts; put a procedure in place to have those in need of the credentials to put a call a specific Help Desk number, or as an extra contingency, log them with the unit Supervisor.  After the downtime, reset the emergency user passwords for the next use.

Educational Impact

Fire Drill!

The best procedures in the world aren’t any good if folks don’t know about them or how to use the downtime solution.

Ok, so admittedly, this isn’t a small detail per se’, but put your downtime procedures to a test by scheduling a mock downtime.

A mock downtime will help shed light on gaps that need attention. The considerations below are by no means a comprehensive list of all items to address in a downtime procedure, but are items of concern for a lot of the clients we service at Summit Healthcare.

Consider:

  • Are the downtime procedures available in a quick reference guide, integrated with my downtime solution?  Consider storing instructions and blank downtime forms IN the downtime reporting system!
  • Can I audit who has looked at downtime reports containing PHI and what patients the user(s) were looking at?
  • Do the users know where to find the downtime reports quickly?
  • Can the users get to the downtime reports when the power is out?
  • Do the downtime reports capture all the clinically relevant data needed in order to continue care?  How about Ambulatory or Financial?
  • Is the downtime procedure sustainable for 2 hours, 2 days, or 2 weeks?
    • Do I know who has a scheduled procedure and will be showing up if my HCIS is down?
    • How about patients needing special diets?
  • Do I need printers attached to the downtime stations, so that I can print out forms for documentation (used for re-entry)?  Remember, a network printer will not work if the network is down, so local printers on emergency power are advised.

There is no better time than hurricane season to ensure you have all the “i’s dotted and t’s crossed” in your downtime plan.

Remember, don’t forget the small details, and if you haven’t yet embarked on a downtime drill, give it a go; it is time well spent.

Posted in Business Continuity, Healthcare Systems Integration, Interoperability, MEDITECH, Uncategorized, Workflow Automation | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Spotlight on the Heart of MUSE 2016

Posted on behalf of Kendra Nalbandian, Regional Sales Manager

The 2016 International MUSE event has come to an end and another successful year will be put into the books. For 34 years, MUSE has served its members by offering an exceptional opportunity for networking, education and training. The Heart of MUSE is one aspect of MUSE that separates this conference from many others in the industry. The MUSE leaders are tasked with the responsibility of challenging their members to give something back to the communities they visit each year. This year the International MUSE conference was in Orlando Florida and the charity that was selected was the Boys and Girls Club of Central Florida. Since 1944, Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Florida has been keeping kids off the streets and giving them a nurturing and safe environment to turn to after school ends each day and during school vacations.

The Club of Central Florida serves nearly 14,000 kids between the ages of 6 and 18 each year! The club consists of 30 centers in Brevard, Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties. Of the more than 1,000 Girls & Boys Clubs throughout the country, the Central Florida organization ranks eight for number of club members served and third for number of teens served. The club members are exposed to a number of different positive individuals that serve as role models. These individuals have an amazing impact on club members lives and the positive impacts can last a lifetime. The club provides opportunities for academic success and healthy lifestyles as well as numerous events to promote good citizenship. The centers provide programs that are developed to meet the diverse needs and interests of its members. The club provides everything from after-school tutoring to college preparation and leadership workshops and organized sports. The club works towards breaking the cycle of poverty one child at a time.

Typically the children that come to the club are economically at risk but a number of children also come from poor neighborhoods or families that are not supportive. President and CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of Central Florida Gary Kane knows this environment all too well, he himself was a member of the club. Gary’s father was in prison, his sister was pregnant at 14 and his mother and mother’s boyfriend were alcoholics. Despite the odds Gary was able to break the cycle and move on to be a successful leader in his community.

Gary’s leadership of the Boys and Girls club of Central Florida has helped to focus on education and reading levels. The club is very passionate about education and donations will be applied towards a renewal of a software application that provides eBooks to its members. A number of different MUSE members supported the organization by donating $5 to buy a pin. Summit Healthcare, a versatile integration technology company located in Braintree Massachusetts partnered with the MUSE association to match donations up to $2,500. Thank you to all the MUSE members that donated!

To learn more about the Girls and Boys Club of Central Florida please visit www.bgccf.org.

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MUSE 2016 Insights: Forward Thinking for New Opportunities and Solutions

Posted on behalf of Tori Buck, Director of Product Management

A year ago at MUSE, we were just beginning to introduce the idea of Summit Healthcare’s latest integration technology in one unified platform with Summit Exchange. We have been working hard since then to make this technology a reality by incorporating all of Summit Healthcare’s 15 years of integration experience in a way that presents well to our clients. The feedback on our efforts so far have been even more exciting than we first expected!

The new platform features all of the great functionality already offered to our clients through the various integration elements, with the ability to scale, build, deploy, and add to their feature set in an entirely new way. They will be able to gain the benefits of easily maintaining and monitoring their systems deployed on multiple servers through one user interface. They will also have the ability to quickly create or add-on to their system as needed, or as new standards are being developed with little additional effort due to the unified, yet modular implementation design.

In addition to these great new features, our clients can rest easy to know that we have done this through implementation of the standards being designed for Meaningful Use, and tested with multiple vendors through our participation in the HIMSS Connectathons. We will be continuing to build based on the IHE specifications, as well as move forward with the exciting new standards provided by FHIR, all to give our clients the best chance of success with their work in the communities they wish to exchange data.

While we wait for clients to recover from the MU2 push, and move forward with MU3, we are busy working with sites to plan for the needs this will present. We already have sites providing feedback on additional improvements we can make for them to ease the challenges being seen with data sharing and reporting. All of these conversations give us the opportunity to continue building the best platform that meets the needs for more than just another engine in the market. As one of our clients said best this week, you need to determine if what you are looking for is a vendor who provides a piece of software, or a partner that works with you to provide solutions and make improvements based on your feedback and needs. At Summit, we truly do want to be that partner to our clients. It is the best way for us to provide them with the knowledge we have learned over the years, and continue to learn about the challenges we can help solve.

As we say goodbye to MUSE 2016, I’m excited about what we will learn this year regarding the industry, and seeing how else we can assist in solving problems with our new Summit Exchange platform. Things can only get better with so many changes on the horizon.

 

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Presentations at MUSE: Wayne Memorial Hospital on the Benefits of Summit Healthcare’s InSync and Scripting Toolkit

Posted on behalf of Erin McDonagh, Director, B2B

At the International MUSE conference this year, I attended the MEDITECH Automation in a Nutshell presentation by Joe Austin and Tim Fail from Wayne Memorial Hospital, North Carolina. They spoke about Summit’s InSync (dictionary management) and Scripting Toolkit.

Their need for automation was based on scheduling, reports, scripting (for vendors that didn’t play well with MEDITECH) and migrations.

Everyone struggles with dictionary synchronization, there is nothing easy or pretty about it…”if you do it in test then you do it in live”. They highlighted that most users are doing it in live first, then test.

In the MEDITECH environment, there is so much going on right now with the priority packs that are coming out three or four times a year and you want to make sure that what you are testing in the test environment will perform the same way in the live environment. Wayne Memorial Hospital struggled with keeping their dictionaries in sync and made a conscious decision not to keep up with all dictionaries, their focus is on about 70% of their dictionaries.

Summit InSync is a user-friendly tool that serves as a point-and-click guide through the dictionary extraction and selection process. It is extremely granule, allowing you to get down to the minute level of detail.  Summit presents a side by side comparison of test and live with a color-coded analysis screen.  When the dictionaries match, it shows a green check mark and when they do not match the system throws up a red flag.  There is a lot of flexibility within the system, you can limit the results to show you only the results that are mismatched.  For example, if you have 1500 records and you only have 8 that are mismatched you can go right to those 8.

The presenters recommend doing your due diligence when choosing a synchronization tool. One of the reasons they chose Summit’s InSync product was because it does a direct extraction out.  There are a lot of choices on the market and one thing to be aware of with some vendors’ solution includes direct extraction in.  The research is important because what they found was that direct extractions back into the MEDITECH system are not supported by MEDITECH.  And, if there is a problem MEDITECH is not going to help you with that.

One benefit for Wayne Memorial Hospital was using InSync to help solve the time constraints with NPR. The NPR writers at their facility were extremely busy and trying to get time with them or on their calendar was difficult.  To be able to use Summit’s InSync product to go in and collect data at the dictionary level that they could utilize, manipulate and use for our scripting was a very nice thing.  Prior to that process, they would pull the data from NPR, download to excel and try to figure out what was different.  Then use that data for the scripting engine and push it back into MEDITECH.  There was a lot of overhead with the previous process.

Additional benefits they saw from using InSync was saving an average of 20 – 24 hours of work per month and they felt that this number would increase as they added more tasks to the scheduler. The ability to add more and manage multiple projects; increased efficiencies among IT and the respective departments.  And, a decrease in data transcription errors.

 

 

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Bi-directional Integration Strategies Between Hospitals and Provider Systems

Posted on behalf of Sara Wildes, National Sales Director

As healthcare delivery and reimbursements models evolve, it goes without saying that mutual quality successes will be achieved through tighter communication and integration between hospitals and providers.  Therefore, properly designed hospital-physician integration models can help enhance community relationships, improve communication through data exchange, and support patient safety initiatives.

There are consistent trends which are being realized within the industry that are forcing organizations to really think about how they’re exchanging information and engaging their provider community. These trends and challenges consist of: declining admissions, decreasing reimbursements, and increased competition for revenue and healthcare dollars. When you add to that, the transition toward new reimbursement models: the growth in Accountable Care Organizations, the advent of value based reimbursements models, and the increase in population health management programs, Hospitals and Provider Practices reimbursements and successes have never been more interrelated.

As a result, these industry forces drive consideration for a tighter and more comprehensive integration model. The physician community has always played a critical role in the success of any organization. As gatekeepers for hospitals services, which require a physician referral or order, physicians are a key audience for continued outreach, underscoring the importance of a solid bi-directional integration strategy.

In the wake of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the industry has witnessed high rates of mergers as hospitals move to reinforce their market positions, improve operational efficiency, and create organizations capable of managing population health. With all of the consolidation, one may consider the need for bi-directional physician office integration and lab outreach integration to be on a downward trend.  But, consolidation doesn’t automatically equate to standardization in EHR platforms between Hospitals and Ambulatory practices. While 3 EHR vendors make up over 60% of Hospital Market Share, the same can’t be said within the ambulatory market. Within the Ambulatory Market, there are 10 different EHR vendors making up 60% of the market. Meanwhile, the 40 percent of practices that used an EHR product other than the top 10 were spread out over 80 different vendors. With such variety in EHR technology utilization within the ambulatory market place, solid integration strategies between hospitals and provider systems remains a driving need within our industry.

The very foundation of Physician Office Integration, inbound orders and resulting from physician practices to hospitals isn’t without its complexities when embarking upon an implementation. But, a well thought through deployment strategy can ultimately enhance physician outreach, broaden an organization’s patient base, and in turn, sustain and grow revenue channels. At this year’s International MUSE Conference in Orlando, there was the opportunity to participate in a number of presentations by MEDITECH Hospitals who shared their experiences and lessons learned in implementing successful bi-directional Physician Practice Integration Models. These models included bi-directional Lab-EHR integration. Bi-directional integration of this nature can really impact any of the departmental service areas offered by a Hospital: Laboratory Services, Radiology/Diagnostics, or other Ancillary areas. But, with the clinical expertise residing in labs, along with a network of provider and patient touch-points, it makes sense that laboratories served as these hospitals’ centerpiece, and entry point, of bi-directionally integrating their providers; and will serve as a logical gateway to building connectivity with practices, and then broadening referral channels to other areas.

Where is your organization in the process of bi-directionally integrating physician practices? Have you tackled bi-directionally integrating laboratory (or other ancillary) orders and resulting with your area ambulatory practices and clinics? Are you interested in learning more about successful deployment strategies?

 

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Great Takeaways from the 2016 MUSE International Conference

Posted on behalf of Jill Cimildoro, Director of Corporate Accounts

Once again, the International MUSE conference for the MEDITECH community and related professionals did not disappoint. This year, the conference took place in sunny and hot Orlando, Florida at the impressive Gaylord Hotel. Our days were filled with interesting and intense discussions around interoperability; Meaningful Use initiatives; and proactive ways to efficiently and electronically notify Healthcare providers when the patients they care for have experienced an important Hospital Event. It’s a fun, yet challenging time in Healthcare, as more and more emphasis is being placed on providing higher quality of care and better health outcomes, all the while lowering costs.

Our clients look to Summit Healthcare for innovative ways to accomplish their interoperability and automation goals. Likewise, we go to them in order to gain insight based on their knowledge, industry experience and challenges maneuvering through today’s landscape. Year after year, we learn more and more from our clients as they share their best practices, accomplishments and the industry demands that keep them up at night, proving to be one of the most rewarding aspects of being a part of the MUSE community. Through MUSE, members and vendors alike are afforded the opportunity to network, solve problems, and improve performance and outcomes. MUSE is an amazing place to learn, foster and create new relationships.

We heard terms like “e-notifications”, “real- time alerts”, and “clinical notifications” as being needs to remain competitive and provide continuity of care within their healthcare organizations. Our clients consistently expressed the need to be able to put actionable information into the hands of the right care team in order to promote coordination, collaboration, and follow-up, to seamlessly care for the patient, and mitigate the risk of them being readmitted. We heard from our clients that they are looking for efficient and streamlined ways to share patient information and communicate in support of transitions of care. But, just as importantly, our clients are looking for solutions to expedite the sharing of that information. Its not just WHAT data to share, its WHEN to share that data.

As a leader in the interoperability space, Summit Healthcare provides a fully integrated platform to address all the things that keep our clients “up at night”. We bridge the gap between disparate systems, support an organization’s transition of care objectives through CCD data exchange as well as offer Healthcare Providers a simple and streamlined way to be made aware of and to act upon important Hospital Events for their patients.

Year after year, we remain excited to be a part of the MEDITECH community. Assisting our clients in achieving their goals is our number one priority at Summit Healthcare. Every year, I leave MUSE excited and invigorated to continue to grow our partnerships with both new and existing clients. Being part of a company that provides interoperability and automation solutions to address organizational goals in order to focus on and provide the utmost quality of care, is humbling and enormously motivating.

We look forward to seeing you next year!

Jill Cimildoro

Director of Corporate Accounts

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Recap of MUSE International in Orlando, Florida!

Posted on behalf of Kevin Field, Regional Sales Director

The MUSE conference is always one of my favorite events of the year. It’s a great time to see existing clients, meet with prospects, and catch-up with old industry friends.  We started the week off strong with the First Night Client Appreciation Event. We were joined by over 200 guests, the band was rocking, and I saw quite a few innovative dance moves.

Our customers always say — “you guys do it right!” Many thanks to our marketing team led by Alexandra Casey!

We had a lot of walk-up interest from conference attendees representing prospect organizations. Unfortunately, we had to turn those people away but if the conference is any indication many of those attendees will call themselves clients next year.

How common is it that you hear someone talking about their new fitness routine? CrossFit, Yoga, Boxing, Spin Cycle, etc.  The days of running and push-ups have evolved—just like healthcare. Everyone wants to be healthier; maximizing the limited time they have available with work, family, and the summer right around the corner.  You are either working towards improvement or figuring out how to start.

MUSE was no different.

As expected, we had a very busy day at the conference. One of the most common conversations centered on the heartbeat of every healthcare organization, the interface engine.

The need for organizations to connect with their extremities (third parties), manage and transfer their blood (data), and ultimately become healthier (interoperable) is more pressing and important than ever before.

Almost every organization at MUSE has or was evaluating the migration to the 6.x platform—the process of getting a new body. When looking at that complete refresh—it only makes sense for an organization to evaluate their heart.  It’s a critical decision that impacts not just 2016—but where does that leave your organization if you need a new heart (interface engine) in 5 years, 10 years, etc.

With Summit’s Interface Engine replacing many competitors over the last few years our market share in the MEDITECH space continues to grow. According to the most recent KLAS study, 11 out of 20 MEDITECH sites used Summit Healthcare for their core interface engine.

We had a lot of prospect activity, discussions, and demonstrations of Summit’s highly rated Interface Engine, Express Connect. The overall theme is that hospitals are looking for an interface engine that is reliable, easy to use with advanced programming capability but engineered for an analyst, and a partner that is an expert in interoperability.

With their organization’s health in mind, most decision makers are receptive to a consultatory approach. Who do they want to partner with?  Do you go to your ophthalmologist for heart pain? Of course not.

Summit Healthcare develops, implements, and services our OWN software. We don’t purchase market share or resell another organization’s offerings—we’ve earned it over the last 16+ years.  Our greatest strength is our client base (1000+ strong) working and pushing us for innovative solutions and the services to match.  We pride ourselves that the relationship doesn’t end at the sale—it begins.

Partnering with the right vendor becomes of paramount importance. Summit Healthcare is an integration and automation company.  We don’t spend half our time working on your eyes, a quarter of the time putting a cast around a broken bone.  We make sure your heart is healthy, reliable, and working efficiently.  That is our niche and that is what we do well—today, tomorrow, and everyday forward.

 

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Lessons from MUSE: A Great Example of How Organizational Health Trumps All Else

Posted on Behalf of Ted Rossi, President & CEO

Last week, Summit Healthcare attended the 2016 International Medical Users Software Exchange, otherwise known as the MUSE Conference. No doubt there will be many other blogs and articles written about the happenings of this premier industry event. It was action-packed to be sure!

Meanwhile, what stands out foremost in my mind is the experience of seeing the excellence of my team and the culture of the business shine through from beginning to end. While other exhibitors complained that “attendance was low,” my team proactively reached out to current and potential customers. We made the event more than “worth it” by showcasing our unique blend of software tools and software products that operationalize and hit home with every department in a hospital. Secretly (or maybe not so secretly), I took pride in knowing that we were in replacement mode of a few of our competitive vendors in the past.

In addition to getting real work done, we also had an impressive amount of fun! Our 15th year of hosting the First Night party proved once again to be a smashing hit. We had more than 300 attendees, and the joint was rocking! Even at the booth, our crazy culture was just shining through. Everyone was laughing and enjoying themselves, making everyone around them smile in the process. So many CIO’s and business owners came up to me and asked, “Why is everyone so happy at your booth?” That’s just us! We’re like a big family.

Each morning during MUSE, we gathered at the booth to make sure we were well prepared for the day ahead. We ate lunch together, we went out at night together, and we even wore matching polo shirts each day!  As is true in the office as well, it’s obvious we really enjoy each other and act as a cohesive unit in all that we do.

That’s not to say we agree on everything and there are never bumps in the road. However, we do respect and trust each other enough to focus on finding the right answer, even when not everyone can be “right.” As Patrick Lencioni states in his book, The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business, “When there is trust, conflict becomes nothing but the pursuit of truth, an attempt to find the best possible answer.”

That level of care was evident throughout the week. At several MUSE conference sessions, the speakers referred to us their partner; not just a vendor, but a company that cares.

Ultimately, what struck me most about MUSE was that it was a shining example of the company we strive to be, both internally and externally. We have fun. We work hard to do the very best for our employees, clients, and partners. And we care. A lot.

 

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