The mandate to shift to a customer perspective to

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Unformatted text preview: uct basis, to the point where many expect each of their major products to return specific levels of profitability. The mandate to shift to a customer perspective to deliver world-class customer experience will be the biggest hurdle for them to overcome. S TRAIGHT TALK I T 31 Electronic health records: getting the basics right TONY BAER & CHRISTINE CHANG A lthough hardly new, electronic health record (EHR) systems are entering the limelight due to “meaningful use” public policy initiatives in the US and elsewhere. In essence, EHR systems are vertical industry enterprise applications and, as such, can benefit from lessons learned during the ERP and CRM waves of the 1990s. If they take advantage of modern, standards-based SOA architectures, healthcare providers could become pacesetters in enterprise agility. Healthcare should learn from other sectors EHR systems are supposed to aggregate and organize all of a patient’s records to save time and money, reduce errors and redundancy, and make it easier for all involved to stay on the same page. EHR systems are in essence a form of enterprise application for healthcare providers. They address a cross-section of the organization, from doctors to nurses, clinicians, radiologists, pharmacists, and admissions staff. That makes them similar to ERP applications that address multiple departments from back office through operations, or more vertical enterprise applications such as supply chain management that touch inventory planners, procurement spets, transportation planners, and operational workers across manufacturing or retail organizations. Although there are some implementation issues specific to healthcare – such as some of the uniqueness of medical professional roles, concerns about patient privacy, plus life 32 S TRAIGHTTALK I T and death issues around data accuracy and completeness – the core principles for implementing EHR are similar to those of other enterprise operational applications. Healthcare providers across the globe face significant cost containment and restructuring...
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