As more and more organizations adopt new technology, it’s important to be aware of the potential pitfalls that can occur during implementation.
EHR implementations can be complex and time-consuming, so it’s important to have a clear plan and adequate resources in place before starting. Here are the five biggest EHR implementation pitfalls you need to avoid:
- Lack of governance and ownership
- Lack of clear objectives and metrics
- IT and vendor management issues
- Lack of physician and staff buy-in
- Implementation and change management issues
Carefully avoiding these pitfalls will help ensure a smooth and panic-free EHR implementation.
Lack of Governance and Ownership
Having a clear governance and ownership plan is essential for any healthcare organization. Governance outlines who is responsible for what, and how decisions are made regarding the implementation and use of the EHR system. This includes determining who has ultimate authority, who is permitted to use the system and what data is shared, who can make changes, and who must be consulted on decisions relating to the implementation and use of the EHR system.
Governance also includes details such as who can access patient information and how that information can be used, and how privacy and security measures will be implemented.
Having a well-defined governance plan in place helps to ensure a successful EHR implementation and reduces the risk of data inaccuracies, which ultimately leads to decreased quality of care and increased costs.
Lack of Clear Objectives and Metrics
Without clear objectives and metrics in place, it can be difficult to track the success of an EHR implementation and measure its impact. Too often, organizations focus on simply completing the project and then neglect to track its effectiveness.
However, it’s important to reduce the project to a clear set of measurable objectives to determine whether the EHR system is fulfilling the needs of the organization’s stakeholders. Setting key performance indicators (KPIs) gives organizations insight into how effective the system is and how it is impacting the organization.
It’s also important to track the progress of the project continuously and adjust as needed. This helps to ensure that the project stays on track and is meeting the objectives of the stakeholders. The data collected from continuous tracking should then be used to make decisions about the direction of the project and to ensure its success.
IT and vendor management issues
IT and vendor management are often overlooked yet critical elements of an EHR implementation. For an EHR Implementation to be successful, the technology and vendor must be integrated into all aspects of the project. This means that communication between all stakeholders must be open, clear, and constant. Furthermore, expectations must be managed and defined from the beginning to avoid any frustration or confusion further down the line.
It is also essential that the vendor chosen is the right partner for the organization and can deliver on their promises. The organization should be sure to thoroughly vet each vendor and that their teams are fully familiar with their processes and functions. Regular meetings with vendors should also be held to set expectations, review progress, and troubleshoot any issues. Furthermore, it is important to ensure that the vendor provides a detailed timeline for the completion of the tasks and any additional resources or support needed.
Lack of Physician and Staff Buy-in
The fourth biggest pitfall in EHR implementation is the lack of clinician engagement. For an EHR implementation to be a success, it is important to ensure that clinicians are onboard and engaged in the process. Clinicians are the key end users of the EHR and need to understand the system before being able to effectively use it.
Therefore, there should be effective communication between clinicians and administrators to ensure that clinician concerns are addressed. Furthermore, organizations should provide relevant training to help clinicians understand how to navigate the system and how to best use it in their day-to-day practice. It is also important to ensure that clinicians are regularly updated on changes and new features. Clinician engagement should continue long after the implementation process is complete to ensure continued success.
Implementation and Change Management Issues
The fifth biggest pitfall in EHR implementation is underestimating the complexities of implementation and change management issues. It is important to understand the full range of tasks required, such as testing, customization, and integration issues. Too often, organizations underestimate the amount of effort needed for a successful implementation. In addition to the technical challenges, organizations need to consider the people and process aspects of a successful EHR implementation.
Organizations need to focus on proper change management practices to ensure a successful transition. To gain clinical and administrative buy-in, organizations need to develop fair and consistent policies and procedures that are tailored to the particular needs of the organization. Effective communication and training are also key to ensuring that users understand how to use the EHR system. It is also important to have a designated change management lead and a project team to ensure that the project is managed effectively.
Preparing for a major EHR upgrade or implementation? Don’t be caught off-guard and end up going over budget and wasting precious time. Give Rise a call to discuss our strategies for keeping implementations on track!