Virtual MEDITECH Go-live at Princeton Community Hospital by Healthcare Triangle During a Pandemic
Princeton Community Hospital (PCH) is a fully accredited, community owned, not-for-profit, 203- bed acute care hospital serving a 10-county region in southern West Virginia and southwest Virginia. PCH had gone live with MEDITECH Expanse on July 1, 2019. In October of 2019, PCH acquired Bluefield Regional Medical Center (BRMC), a nearby community healthcare provider offering inpatient, outpatient, diagnostic, medical, surgical, and emergency care. The acquired facility includes a Joint Commission accredited, 92-bed acute care hospital and multiple specialty clinics. It is also a teaching facility for osteopathic medicine. As part of the acquisition, Princeton undertook a project to provision their MEDITECH software for use at BRMC.
Princeton Community Hospital and Bluefield Regional Medical Center (BRMC) were counting on their consulting partner to provide onsite support for BRMC and its Provider practices and clinics on April 1, 2020. The consultants engaged for implementation and Go-LIVE support had developed a plan, prepared, and completed travel arrangements for a traditional on-site presence for at-the-elbow support for physicians, mid-levels, and nursing staff. The COVID-19 pandemic and the rollout of travel restrictions in West Virginia created an urgent need to quickly redesign and implement a remote Go-LIVE support model.
As travel restrictions became more widespread during the COVID-19 pandemic, HCTI identified the need for an alternative plan and leveraged existing cloud-based resources, knowledge, and communication strategies to rapidly provide support without being physically on-site. HCTI’s innovative approach included:
- HCTI identified the need to quickly shift the go-live plan and provide needed experience and expertise in delivery of remote services
- Provided support remotely 24 hours a day with experts across Clinical and Provider content and workflows
- Continually assessed the effectiveness of the remote support model and adjusted the approach when necessary to meet the client’s needs
- With an urgent change to remote support, HCTI identified the need to remain present virtually to re-engage the end users and project teams
- At-the-monitor support replaced at-the-elbow using remote desktop software
- Consultants routinely called units for virtual rounding and set up times for extra attention for providers who were struggling
- Daily team meetings were scheduled and attended by remote support resources to remain up to date on site progress, report on issue status and assist with prioritizing efforts and resources
- HCTI consultants used proven communication methodologies for collaboration with the on-site teams
- Communication strategies included timely maintenance of shared documents, follow-through and resource transition hand-offs
Addressing the restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Healthcare Triangle consultants were instrumental in implementing a remote, safe, and effective go-live support model. This was accomplished leveraging HCTI’s experience, tools, innovative thinking, flexibility and proven expertise. HCTI resources were not receiving calls for clinical support, necessitating an effort to re-engage the client and evaluate how to best assist. Healthcare Triangle initiated proactive support through regular virtual rounding.
Patient care units were routinely contacted, 24 hours a day, to ensure that all available routes of assistance were known to end users. The adjustment from on demand support initiated by the site to virtual rounding was critical and successful in gaining the confidence of end-users.
HCTI ensued lines of communication remained open by leveraging their cloud-based tools. Hand-offs between remote support resources and attendance at daily meetings enabled the team to remain current on the go live issues and priorities. The team remained active and connected until issues were resolved, and the resources’ breadth of knowledge facilitated issue investigation and solutions around the clock.
- At project closure, the site reported that the consultants’ availability and assistance had proven invaluable
- The availability of Healthcare Triangle’s consultants allowed on-site clinical analysts to prioritize their internal resource time
- Consistent remote access to the consultants’ expertise during the go-live period added valuable timely support and perspective to issue investigation and effective resolution