JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas –
For the seventh consecutive year, Brooke Army Medical Center has been named one of the nation’s “Most Wired” medical facilities for its innovative use of health information technology by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives, or CHIME.
The mission of the CHIME HealthCare’s Most Wired program is to elevate the health and healthcare of communities around the world through the optimal use of information technology. The annual survey is designed to identify and recognize healthcare organizations that exemplify best practices through their adoption, implementation and use of information technology.
Hospitals and health systems at the forefront of using healthcare IT to improve the delivery of care have maximized the benefits of foundational technologies and are embracing new technologies that support population management and value-based care.
The most successful organizations not only adopt technology but apply it strategically to achieve great outcomes, according to an analysis of the CHIME HealthCare’s Most Wired survey results.
Army Lt. Col. Peter Huynh, BAMC Chief Information Officer, credits Information Management Division staff for helping to maintain this recognition for the past seven years.
“With the transition of the Most Wired award to CHIME this year, the number of hospitals recognized for Most Wired has been reduced by half from the previous years, making this recognition even more special,” Huynh said. “I am very proud of the BAMC team and our commitment to the strategic use of IT to improve healthcare delivery and be the pinnacle of military healthcare.”
HealthCare’s Most Wired, now in its 20th year, traditionally tracked the adoption of healthcare IT in hospitals and health systems. CHIME took over the Most Wired program and revised the survey questions and methodology this year to highlight strengths and gaps in the industry. The goal is to identify best practices and promote the strategic use of healthcare IT to elevate the health and care of communities around the world.
The report found two key areas that emerged in 2018: the use of foundational technologies such as integration, interoperability, security and disaster recovery; and the use of transformational technologies to support population health management, value-based care, patient engagement and telehealth.
As indicated in the CHIME report, BAMC continues to pursue technological innovations to improve health care delivery and provide enhanced patient experience.
“A great example is the formation of the Virtual Medical Center at BAMC,” Huynh said. “This is the Department of Defense’s first virtual health center that enables virtual health capabilities for patients anytime and anywhere. This includes enabling care from the 130-plus medical treatment facilities around the globe, but also to our wartime locations such as Afghanistan and Iraq.”
Another example is the rapid adoption of a hands-free communication system which allows staff members to use voice-enabled technology to allow instantaneous and secure communication with other members of the care team to include providers, nurses, dieticians, radiologists, and other supporting members.
This system is used throughout BAMC and allows integration with other clinical systems such as the nurse call bell system that will automatically route the alarm from a patient’s room to an assigned nurse or escalate to the charge nurse as required.
“This system has streamlined and simplified communication and resulted in improved care delivery of increased operating room efficiency, reduction of patient falls, and improved overall patient and staff satisfaction,” Huynh said.