The waiting game is over

Imagine not having to wait for a patient’s chart before initiating orders or viewing and updating it. This will soon become a reality across VCH, PHSA and PHC.

“Everyone always needs the chart at the same time,” says Dana Pierce, Patient Care Clinical Coordinator, Sechelt Hospital (formerly St. Mary's), VCH. “This dependency is even worse when the patient is acutely ill.”

Today, our clinical processes occur in a series because all orders go into the patient’s paper chart – which gets physically passed from person to person.

Through the Clinical & Systems Transformation (CST) project, healthcare providers will have immediate access to a patient’s chart in the new shared clinical information system – from anywhere. This means patient records can be viewed and updated by numerous healthcare providers at the same time.

“Talk about streamlining everything! The receiving RN will be able to look at the chart prior to receiving the patient, and they can chart while the physician or anyone else is looking at it. We will also be able to look at results while getting reports. Having the information we need, when we need it, will be so much more cohesive,” says Dana.

For example, this means that an emergency physician will be able to view a patient’s vital signs, demographics, triage and acuity (CTAS) score, the triage nurse’s notes and ECG results in the system.

After initiating orders, the physician could be walking down the hallway with an ECG technician, a nurse bringing aspirin and a lab technician – all going straight to the patient because the orders were initiated in parallel.   

It means fewer delays and improved outcomes for patients. Dana says at Sechelt Hospital this is especially true for patients who are critically ill and need to be transferred.

“The doctor is on the phone with the physician who is going to take the patient, and we are on the phone giving reports to the receiving RN and patient transfer staff. Everyone is trying to access the same information and history at once,” she explains. “We are often trying to remember what was in the chart, rather than being able to actually look at it.”

Dana looks forward to the improvements to patient care CST will bring about.

“I’m excited for us to stop writing the same thing down over and over again in a million different places! I want a person’s history to pop up when they present to ER. I want to know their allergies. I want to know what happened to my patient in Vancouver when I get them back. I want to check in on people all over the hospital. I want to know it all!”  

You can download a printable version of this article (PDF).

You can also download a PDF poster featuring Dana Pierce, in two sizes: 8.5 x 11cm or 11 x 17cm.