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FAQ's & Information

updated Nov. 7, 2011


What is our new electronic medical record (EMR) system called?
The name of the electronic medical record (EMR) system we will be using is EpicCare. The vendor that developed the system is Wisconsin-based Epic. This dynamic health-information technology will strengthen our system’s processes related to patient care and clinical administration. OneChart is the name Franciscan Alliance has selected for its transition to and implementation of an EMR system.

When are we switching to Epic?
Many physician practices have transitioned to Epic programs in the outpatient setting.

St. Francis Health campuses moved to Epic on February 26, 2011

St. Margaret Health: June 9, 2012

St. Anthony Health - Michigan City & St. Anthony Health - Crown Point: August 4, 2012

St. Elizabeth Health and St. Elizabeth Health - Crawfordsville: April 6, 2013 

St. James Health: May 11, 2013

Franciscan Healthcare - Munster: May 11, 2013

What software will be affected?
The Epic transition touches nearly every hospital department and employed physician group practice. When our regions throughout our health system go live with Epic/OneChart, employees and physicians using the following Franciscan Alliance systems will be impacted:

  • Affinity Medical Records
  • Affinity Order Management
  • Affinity Patient Accounting
  • Affinity Registration
  • Artiva
  • CareMedic
  • Clin Profile
  • E-Premis
  • Heartlab
  • Horizon Admin Rx 7.8.1
  • Horizon Clinicals
  • Horizon Emergency Care
  • Horizon Expert Doc 7.8.1

Additional systems may be impacted at a later date.

How will this change what I do?
The goal of Epic is to easily coordinate advanced care for our patients. Using Epic will require some changes, including new terminology, potential changes in processes and new methods of documenting the care you provide.

Workflow preview teams meet to discuss processes for patient care and how those might be impacted by a new electronice medical record system. Policies are reviewed to ensure that our processes are consistent with the patient care technology available through Epic. Our goal is to have all policies updated in a timely manner so that we can incorporate those changes into staff and physician training.

Why are we changing our systems now?
Health care in the United States is rapidly changing to a system where care providers will be required to produce much higher quality outcomes using fewer resources and where collaboration is vital in providing top-notch, efficient patient services.

This partnership prepares Franciscan Alliance to meet the challenges of healthcare reform, including a federal mandate to transition to electronic medical record systems.

Additionally, Franciscan Alliance will have the benefit of support of federal stimulus dollars to assist in this transition.

What are some of the benefits to moving to this system?

  • One record. Epic dramatically improves how we gather and share information about a patient’s medical history, medications, insurance and billing. There will be one source for clinical information such as allergies, problems lists, medications and past surgeries. This technology will reduce paperwork, streamline workflows, reduce the risk of errors and maintain patient confidentiality.
  • Improved access. Epic is a powerful tool that will help Franciscan Alliance continue its mission of delivering care with increased levels of patient safety, clinical quality and personal service. Epic will provide patients and their providers with unprecedented access to healthcare information through a secure online connection, allowing caregivers to make the best decisions for each patient.
  • Coordinated care. Epic software allows our hospitals and physicians’ offices to run more smoothly and work more closely together, providing highly efficient patient care through enhanced communications. It will result in simplified scheduling, automated medication management and medical decision-support software.

What does the move to Epic mean for patients and families?
Epic will help our clinicians provide even better care to patients. For instance,  one integrated software package will make it easier for clinicians to access patient records, share information, track trends in a patient’s health history and receive alerts on best practices and reminders for health services such as flu shots. Patients later will have access to some parts of their medical records through a secure online application known as MyChart, enabling them to become informed and active participants in their health care.