Three years earlier, Fairview Health Services, a not-for-proﬁt, academic medical system based in Minneapolis and aﬃliated with the University of Minnesota, merged with HealthEast, based in St. Paul, to create M Health Fairview. After the merger, leaders sought to move all of the system’s facilities onto a single EHR to more seamlessly integrate patient records across the system. But Bethesda Hospital had not made this transition at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, clinicians treating COVID-19 patients could not electronically access their patients’ records from other facilities in the system.
“It created some very unique challenges from both an operations and clinical standpoint,” says Eric Murray, director of IT data solutions and technology, M Health Fairview. “We were the only health system in the state to provide a single hospital for COVID-19 care, and we had the potential to provide amazing care and outcomes with timely, specialized treatment. Without access to patients’ longitudinal data, however, we were missing key insights that could help us deliver advanced and personalized care.”
Given the speed with which COVID-19 patients moved across the system, M Health Fairview needed a solution that would provide fast access to comprehensive data at the point of care. M Health Fairview worked with Verato, its partner for enterprise patient identity resolution, to bridge the gap.
M Health Fairview had already worked with Verato to link nearly 7 million records from two different Epic systems, reducing duplicate records by almost half. Now, the systems had the “identity glue” to merge Bethesda Hospital records with same- patient records across the system by implementing Verato Universal® MPI, a next- generation enterprise master person index (EMPI). In just 24 hours, Bethesda Hospital’s patient identity solution went live. This gave the hospital complete access to patients’ medical information across the system, which supercharged the hospital’s dedicated COVID-19 response.
“This initiative highlights the value of a 360-degree view of the patient when minutes count,” says Genevieve Melton-Meaux, MD, PhD, surgeon and chief analytics and care innovation officer, M Health Fairview. “When clinical teams have the most accurate, up-to-date information at their fingertips at the point of care, they are able to make the best care decisions based on evidence. They also gain critical knowledge around ways to strengthen the health of populations in a rapidly evolving environment.”