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Valley Health Is Among Nation's Most Wired Health Systems

Valley Health Is Among Nation's Most Wired Health Systems

Valley Health System has been named one of the country’s Most Wired™ hospitals and health systems for 2017, recognizing how the regional health system uses information technology to improve access to care, care delivery, patient outcomes and safety.

The designation by Hospitals & Health Networks magazine is based on the Most Wired Survey, conducted in cooperation with the American Hospital Association Health Forum and Clearwater Compliance. Valley Health is one of nine organizations in Virginia and 461 nationwide to receive Most Wired recognition.

"I'm very proud of how well our IT and Operations teams work together to use technology to maximize quality care, patient safety, and access," notes Valley Health Vice President and Chief Information Officer James Burton. "Most Wired recognition is a valuable benchmark and confirms that we are doing the big things well, such as the electronic health record and clinical processes. It also affirms that we’re on top of other ‘unseen’ criteria such as security, infrastructure and PC support to protect our health system, our providers, employees, and patients."

The survey evaluated how hospitals and health systems use health IT in four focus areas:

  1. Infrastructure, such as identity management, data recovery, regular risk analysis, and wireless network accessibility;
  2. Business and administrative management, such as expanded use of electronic payer transactions, electronic delivery of quality scores to clinical leaders, and automation of revenue cycle processes;
  3. Clinical quality and safety, such as routine use of EHR technology by clinicians for patient care, electronic medication reconciliation, and clinical decision support systems; and
  4. Clinical integration, such as patient portal functionality and interoperability of applications within the hospital.

Epic, the electronic health record used at Valley Health, promotes connectivity between providers in a variety of locations, providing secure access to patient data from office visits, diagnostic tests, and encounters at other hospitals or urgent care centers, Burton explains. “Our systems are designed by and around care providers and clinical workflow, with patient satisfaction and outcomes at the core.”

Valley Health’s embrace of the electronic health record and other secure IT applications enables primary and specialty providers across its rural service area to develop and update patient care plans and analyze data to identify ways to improve quality and reduce costs. Telehealth, which brings consulting providers into the exam room in remote locations, continues to expand access to care for Valley Health patients. Six months ago, Winchester Medical Center added e-ICU remote monitoring in its 48-bed Intensive Care Unit to supplement on-site around-the-clock care for critically ill adult patients.