Friday, July 29, 2011

Events: 2011 Keane Client Conference HDTV Winner

Congratulations to our HDTV winner Erica Murray, Systems Analyst, Athens Regional Medical Center in Athens, Georgia!!!
Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth at the Keane Client Conference in Newport Beach - George enjoyed meeting you!  If you have any further questions about any of the products and services Unibased offers, please contact our solution consultants:
George Giorgianni
800-489-6069 ext 163

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Press Release: Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian Signs Agreement for Unibased ForSite2020® RMS Enterprise Scheduling

Unibased Systems Architecture, Inc. (Unibased) announced today that Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian (Hoag) has signed an agreement for the license and implementation of the Unibased ForSite2020® Resource Management System (RMS) software application suite, including the POCET and CASH physician and consumer portals. Hoag intends to use ForSite2020® to provide the physician and patient community with an enhanced customer experience that will include a streamlined registration process, 24/7 availability to self-service functions, and a one-call “one-stop-shop” scheduling process for all services and procedures across the Hoag enterprise and five of its institutes, which include Hoag Cancer Institute, Hoag Heart and Vascular Institute, Hoag Neurosciences Institute, Hoag Women’s Health Institute, and orthopedic services through Hoag’s affiliate Hoag Orthopedic Institute.

ForSite2020® will play a role in both the Hoag implementation of an electronic health record (EHR) and a health information exchange (HIE), linking physician practices, clinics, reference labs, imaging centers, pharmacies, diagnostic centers and patients. The HIE and other methods of communication with the community will improve quality of care, patient safety and healthcare efficiency. The Unibased ForSite2020® RMS enterprise scheduling system will facilitate these objectives as well as improve the coordination of patient care. The HIE will provide a platform for participating physicians to confirm patient schedules based upon requested services in an expeditious fashion.

Tim Moore, Hoag’s Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, stated, “Hoag exists solely to provide the best healthcare experience possible to the communities we serve. Hoag has a long-term commitment in investing in our communities through enabling technologies. After an extensive evaluation process, we have selected Unibased as our comprehensive enterprise scheduling solution related to their proven track record, ease to work with, and commitment to our shared objectives.”

Phil Amelung, Principal Consultant for Unibased, agreed, “Unibased is looking forward to supplying Hoag with tools they will use to transform the way services are accessed and delivered at Hoag. With a project like this, everybody wins. Patients and physicians are provided more convenient access and a consistent “front door” to services at Hoag, administrative processes are streamlined so that service locations can focus on providing quality services for their patients, and many business service benefits are realized from enhanced and expedited revenue cycle functions.”

About Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian:  Hoag is a not-for-profit regional healthcare delivery network in Orange County, CA that treats nearly 30,000 inpatients and 350,000 outpatients annually. Hoag consists of two acute-care hospitals, seven health centers and three urgent care centers (with three more scheduled to open in Fall 2011). Hoag Hospital Newport Beach, which has served Orange County since 1952, and Hoag Hospital Irvine, which opened in 2010, are designated Magnet hospitals by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). Hoag offers a comprehensive blend of health care services that include six institutes providing specialized services in the following areas: cancer, heart and vascular, neurosciences, women’s health , primary care and orthopedics through Hoag’s affiliate Hoag Orthopedic Institute. Hoag has been named one of the Best Regional Hospitals in the U.S. News & World Report Metro Edition. National Research Corporation has endorsed Hoag as Orange County’s most preferred hospital for the past 15 consecutive years and for an unprecedented 15 years, residents of Orange County have chosen Hoag as the county’s best hospital in a local newspaper survey. Visit
View/Download PDF of Full Press Release HERE

Monday, July 25, 2011

Meaningful Use OnceSource Powered by HIMSS

Source: HIMSS Website

In its role as the leading authority on the appropriate implementation and use of health IT, HIMSS has developed the Meaningful Use OneSource to equip our members and other interested organizations to prepare for the Meaningful Use and Certification Criteria and Standards regulations. The Meaningful Use OneSource is a repository of hundreds of documents, tools, and links to other knowledge available on the Internet. Within this authoritative knowledge resource you will find everything you need to know about meaningful use. Meaningful Use OneSource has the answers to your questions on:
  • How to meet the meaningful use and certification criteria
  • How to receive the Medicare and Medicaid incentive funding and avoid penalties
  • How to practically and successfully implement meaningful use in your organization.
All content contained within the Meaningful Use OneSource is vetted by content experts prior to its inclusion on the site, so you can be sure that you are receiving the very best and most credible knowledge available.
The Meaningful Use OneSource is a dynamic and living body that will be continuously updated with the latest research and thought capital. You will also find recently released updates on federal and state laws and regulations; updated Web links; new podcasts, tools, and more. Visit the site regularly so that you are always on top of the latest developments and fully equipped to implement and manage meaningful use in your organization.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Press Release: Unibased Debuts Significant Upgrade for Managing Faxed Physician Orders

Unibased announced the release of Fax Order Collection Utilization & Storage (FOCUS), a unique order management solution designed to automate and improve the current process of faxed physician orders. Part of the award-winning ForSite2020® offering, Unibased’s FOCUS streamlines the traditional faxed order process by collecting and electronically monitoring, sorting, categorizing, distributing and scheduling all faxed physician orders in one integrated system, eliminating the hassle of lost or missing orders and increasing efficiency – for enhanced coordination of care and patient/physician satisfaction. FOCUS allows hospitals to maintain control while reducing labor and lost revenues associated with searching for missing physician orders by simplifying the process with total automation.

View/Download PDF of Full Press Release HERE

Friday, July 15, 2011

Client News: Oakwood Donates EKG Units to Dearborn Fire Department

The Oakwood Healthcare System donated five portable 12-lead EKG units to the Dearborn Fire Department on Wednesday, furthering a commitment to reduce heart attack treatment times throughout the Detroit metro area.

The units, which represent an investment of $165,000 by the healthcare system, are capable of transmitting EKG information directly to the smart phones of attending physicians, dramatically reducing the treatment times for heart attack victims. It’s part of a commitment from Oakwood to provide the equipment and training to paramedics throughout the 500-square mile area serviced by Oakwood.

“This is a huge commitment, not only to the City of Dearborn, but to the entire region,” said Jeffrey Beutner, Battalion Chief, Emergency Medical Services for the City of Dearborn. “This is a wonderful thing the hospital has done.”

Healthcare systems rate the time between the arrival of heart attack patients at an emergency room and when they can receive an emergency catherization—it’s referred to as door-to-balloon time. The national average is about 90 minutes. Since the new technology has been implemented at the Oakwood Hospital & Medical Center (OHMC) in Dearborn, the average is about 53—and far less if patients are transported by the Dearborn Fire Department, rather than going to the hospital on their own.

“We’ve consistently seen 30 minutes or less when patients are transported by our agency,” said Beutner.

That’s because doctors can make the diagnosis as soon as the information is transmitted to their phones, said Joe Murray Ph.D., manager of the Critical Care transport Team at Oakwood Hospital and Medical Center.

“By the time the fire department gets to the hospital, our staff is ready to go,” said Murray.

Beutner said the units would find regular use in Dearborn. The four ambulance units in the city respond to about 10,000 calls every year. They go on at least three cardiac runs every day, he said.

The Dearborn fire department has used the technology since 2009, according to Beutner. The new units will replace old ones that have seen plenty of use for the department.

“It’s been a great partnership,” said Dearborn Mayor Jack O’Reilly.

“It’s huge,” said Fire Chief Richard Miller of the donation, which comes at a time when many municipalities are operating under tight budget conditions. “This is a big help for the department and the community as a whole.”

Michael Geheb, MD, division president of Oakwood Healthcare Inc, said the project was a team effort from the healthcare system, the Oakwood Foundation and the OHMC Guild, volunteers who helped generate donations for the Lifepak units.

“It’s been a great collaborative effort,” said Geheb.

Murray said Oakwood hopes to provide the equipment and training to departments throughout the healthcare system’s service area this year. Dearborn has been transmitting ECGs for about two years now, but their current cardiac monitors are older and rapidly approaching their expiration. The new Life-Pak units in Dearborn will replace five-year-old machines.

“Oakwood is committed to this process because of the successes we’ve had,” said Murray. “We’re looking forward to getting everyone on board.”

Client News: Contra Costa Awarded $498,524 from Affordable Care Act for School-Based Health Clinics

Contra Costa County will receive nearly half a million dollars to help improve the health of children with school-based health clinics thanks to the Affordable Care Act.
The grant was one of 278 awarded to school-based health center programs to help expand care to students nationwide by the federal Department of Health and Human Services, which made the announcement today. Contra Costa Health Services, the Contra Costa County health system, received $498,524 to fund two additional school-based mobile health clinics. The funding was made possible under the 2009 Affordable Care Act that was co-authored by Congressman George Miller and strongly supported by Congressman John Garamendi and other House Democrats.
"This is yet more evidence of the positive effects for our community from the Affordable Care Act. Once again, we see this law working to improve the health of our community, despite attacks on the law from Washington Republicans," Miller said of the announcement. "Contra Costa Health Services deserves the most sincere congratulations on winning this award today. Their work in our community has a huge impact on so many lives and I look forward to seeing the health clinics in action."
The grant will make it possible for Contra Costa Health Services to provide health services to an additional 1,950 students annually with the two new 44-foot-long mobile clinics, said Public Health Clinic Services Director Sue Crosby. That means a total 5,000 children in Contra Costa will receive care each year through six mobile clinics serving schools throughout the county. The new clinics should be in service within the next year.
"We are so pleased to receive this funding for these vital resources that help us provide quick, affordable, safe and convenient health services to children who might not otherwise receive the care they need to be healthy and to be able to go to school," Crosby said.
School-based health centers improve the overall health and wellness of all children through health screenings, health promotion and disease prevention activities and enable children with acute or chronic illnesses to attend school. This method of providing health care has been proven to help keep children healthy, said Garamendi, who was California's Insurance Commissioner and Lieutenant Governor.
"Education and health together constitute two essential building blocks for happy, fulfilling lives and they help our children compete in the global market for jobs- to Make It In America," Garamendi said. "I applaud the Contra Costa County Health Services Department for securing the money for this valuable investment."
To learn more about the Affordable Care Act, visit To learn more about HRSA's School-Based Health Center Capital Program, visit For more information on Contra Costa Health Services, visit

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Client News: Inova Loudoun: 100 Years of Promises Kept

Source: Ashburn Patch
Written by: Shannon Sollinger

Getting ready to lay the first bricks: Inova Loudoun Hospital CEO Randy Kelley, left, Board of Supervisors Chairman Scott York, Leesburg Mayor Kristen Umstattd, Middleburg Bank Board Chairman Joe Boling, Supervisor Kelly Burk, Chairman of the Inova Loudoun Hospital Board of Directors Dr. Martha Callihan, Janell Hoffman, State Senator Mark Herring, Mayor of Middleburg Betsy Davis, Mayor of Lovettsville Elaine Walker, Ladies Board Chair Joan Elliott.

One hospital CEO, three mayors, one senator, one former senator, a supervisor and one supervisors’ chairman, a bank chairman and just about anyone else interested in health care in Loudoun gathered July 11 at the front entrance of the Inova Loudoun Medical Campus on Cornwall Street in Leesburg and greeted the beginning of a two-year multi-million dollar project to bring the facility into the 21st century.
For 80 years, from 1917 until 1997, when Loudoun Hospital moved to its new building in Lansdowne, this medical campus has been at the center of health care in Loudoun County, said Inova Loudoun Hospital CEO Randy Kelley.
“Today,” he said, “that tradition continues.”
When two doctors and a pharmacist founded Loudoun Hospital in 1912, Kelley added, they turned immediately to the ladies of the county for support. That has not changed, he said, and announced that the Ladies Board of Inova Loudoun Hospital has pledged to raise $1 million for the Cornwall Cares Campaign.
Dr. Ed Puccio, head of emergency services at the hospital, said phase I of the project includes a more than 3,000 square foot expansion of the emergency room and its trauma room, lab and radiology units -  for the first time since the ER opened in Leesburg, all 15 patient rooms will be private. They will be large enough, Puccio said, that if needed, a second bed could be put in.
Also included in phase I, expected to be completed in 2012:
  • New laboratory
  • New brick fa├žade (which will match the brick work on the new medical office building that shares the campus) on the 1974 building
  • Upgraded space for the Loudoun Community Free Clinic and Loudoun Child Advocacy Center, which will continue to occupy space donated by Inova
  • Improvements to materials management, patient transport, security and the central plant
Phase 2 of the project, to be completed in 2013, includes renovation of the 22-bed Loudoun Adult Medical Psychiatric Services and addition of surface parking at the east wing.
“Inova Loudoun Hospital is mindful of the rich history associated with this site and the original promise made to care for the health and well being of Loudoun County,” Kelley said. “As we invest $32 million in renovation and construction to meet the emergency and outpatient needs of the county, we continue to fulfill our promise.”

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Client News: Norton Healthcare Adds Android Application to its NortonMobile Family of Mobile Apps

Norton Healthcare is the first health care system in Louisville and among the first in the country to launch a mobile application (app) in the Android market. Similar to the NortonMobile iPhone and iPad apps, the NortonMobile Android app includes features to find doctors, locations and health information, and allows users to save their “favorites” on their phone.

“Some health care mobile applications provide all available data at once, and the information is refreshed only when an update to that application is made available and uploaded into the smartphone,” said Jerry Roberts, senior Web developer, Norton Healthcare. “The Norton Healthcare mobile application operates in ‘real time’ and immediately sends the data to the user as it is requested. This process ensures that every time the application is opened, the user receives the most current information.”

NortonMobile now is available for the iPad, iPhone, iTouch and Android devices. Features of the NortonMobile Android app include:
Find a doctor
Norton Healthcare has the largest network of physicians in the Louisville area. With the NortonMobile app, users can find, save and customize physician information in a “favorites” section and also use the app to request an appointment.
Find a location
By taking advantage of Google Maps technology, NortonMobile makes it easy to locate and receive step-by-step directions to any of Norton Healthcare’s nearly 100 physician practice locations in the Louisville area, as well as urgent care centers, emergency departments and other Norton Healthcare facilities.
Symptom navigator and health information
The NortonMobile app can help find answers about pain and other symptoms. The Symptom Navigator uses a diagram of the body that allows users to pinpoint the areas where symptoms are occurring. The Symptom Navigator searches a large health encyclopedia and provides a list of possible causes and treatments based on the user’s symptoms.
News, recipes, classes, special events and more
Norton Healthcare offers numerous free classes, screenings and health events ranging from cancer screenings to weight management seminars. The NortonMobile app helps users search and register for classes directly from their phone. Users also can search a large selection of healthy recipes. The NortonMobile Android app allows users to receive the latest news from Norton Healthcare, including instant updates from the Norton Healthcare Twitter account about health care trends and recalls, health tips and health-related community events.
To download the free NortonMobile Android application, visit the Android Marketplace and search “Norton Healthcare” or visit for information about all of Norton Healthcare’s mobile applications.
For application support email us at

Requires iOS4 software; Compatible with iTouch & iPhone 3G, 3Gs, and 4

Video Podcasts downloadable from iTunes

  • From itunes search ‘norton healthcare’
About Norton HealthcareFor more than a century, Norton Healthcare’s faith heritage has guided its mission to provide quality health care to all those it serves. Today, Norton Healthcare is the Louisville, Ky. area’s leading hospital and health care system (44 percent market share) and third largest private employer, providing care at more than 125 locations throughout Greater Louisville and Southern Indiana. The Louisville-based not-for-profit system includes five Louisville hospitals with more than 1,800 licensed beds; five outpatient centers; 12 Norton Immediate Care Centers; 11,200 employees; more than 470 employed medical providers; and about 2,300 total physicians on its medical staff. Norton Healthcare is the 2011 recipient of the prestigious National Quality Forum National Quality Healthcare Award, and has consistently been recognized as one of the best places to work in Metro Louisville, the state of Kentucky and nationally. Norton Healthcare and Humana are one of only four national pilot sites, and the only one in Kentucky, to study the Accountable Care Organization (ACO) model through the prestigious Brookings – Dartmouth ACO Pilot Project. More information about Norton Healthcare is available at

Monday, July 11, 2011

Client News: Wisconsin Healthcare Executive Will Serve as New President of Gettysburg Hospital and Senior Vice President of WellSpan Health

Officials at WellSpan Health have announced the appointment of Jane E. Hyde, a Wisconsin health care executive with more than 35 years of experience, as a senior vice president for the health system and president of Gettysburg Hospital.
Hyde, who will officially join Central Pennsylvania’s largest health care organization in September, was selected through a national search process, which included participation by members of the Gettysburg Hospital Board of Directors and members of WellSpan’s senior management team.  She succeeds Kevin H. Mosser, M.D., who became WellSpan’s executive vice president and chief operating officer in January 2011.
Since 2000, Hyde has served Agnesian HealthCare in Fond du Lac, WI, an integrated health care organization that includes three hospitals, a long-term care facility, eight retail pharmacies, 140 physician practices and other ambulatory health care centers and services.  Most recently, Hyde held the position of senior vice president of strategic development and community affairs.  She has also served as chief executive officer of Agnesian HealthCare Enterprises, a retail subsidiary of Agnesian Healthcare, and as chief operating officer of Sun Home Health/Hospice Services in Northumberland, Pa.
In addition to her leadership responsibilities at Agnesian HealthCare, Hyde has been an active member of her local community, having served on the boards of directors for St. Mary’s Springs High School, the Fond du Lac Area YMCA, the Windhover Center for the Arts and the Women’s Fund of the Fond du Lac Community Foundation.  She has also served as a volunteer for Hospice Home of Hope in Fond du Lac.
“We are fortunate to have the opportunity to welcome into our community and organization a health care leader as talented and committed to the general mission of non-profit health care as Jane Hyde,” said Mosser.  “We believe that the values that Jane holds are consistent with those of our organization and we are happy to have her join our health system.”
As president of Gettysburg Hospital, Hyde will assume responsibility for the day-to-day operation of the community hospital, which serves the residents of Adams County and northern Maryland.  She will also maintain relationships with community organizations, agencies and stakeholder groups in support of Gettysburg Hospital and WellSpan Health’s mission to improve the health and quality of life of the greater Adams County region.  As a senior vice president of WellSpan Health, Hyde will actively participate in the operating leadership of the integrated health system.
“The members of the search committee are excited to welcome Jane to Gettysburg Hospital and to our community,” said Ronald Hankey, chairman of the Gettysburg Hospital Board of Directors and member of the search committee.  “We think she will be an outstanding representative of the hospital and will serve our community well in her leadership position."
Hyde holds a bachelor’s degree from Lock Haven University, Lock Haven, Pa., and a master’s degree in public administration from Marywood University, Scranton, Pa.  She is currently in the dissertation phase of the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Leadership Studies at Marian University, Fond du Lac, WI.
About WellSpan Health WellSpan Health is a regional integrated health system that serves more than 650,000 people in south central Pennsylvania and northern Maryland. With more than 8,500 employees, the organization includes Gettysburg Hospital; York Hospital; the 500-member WellSpan Medical Group; WellSpan VNA Home Care; and regional referral services in cardiovascular, oncology, orthopedics, behavioral health, women’s services, neurosciences and Level I trauma.  The organization also includes an ambulatory care network with 32 locations and South Central Preferred, a preferred provider organization and third party administrator.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Client News: Lancaster General Has Plans for $15M Chester County Facility

Source: Daily Local News
Written by: GRETCHEN METZ, Staff Writer
The hospital is seeking final approval from Sadsbury supervisors to build a outpatient facility on the southeast corner of routes 30 and 10. Hospital officials and the property’s developer, The Provco Group of Villanova, are scheduled for the supervisors’ August meeting.
Once final approvals are in hand, the next step will be filing applications for building and other permits.
The yet-to-be-named outpatient facility is a $15 million investment for Lancaster General, and the hospital’s second Chester County location.
In April 2010, the hospital opened the Lancaster General Health Express, an urgent care center in the Walmart Supercenter at the West Sadsbury Commons, on the southwest corner of routes 30 and 10.
At the express, certified registered nurse practitioners provide treatment for common illnesses such as sinus infections, earaches, strep throat and rashes, as well as health screenings, immunizations and physicals for sports activities, camps and schools.
Lancaster General has trained its focus on western Chester County because of its residential growth.
“One of the fastest growing areas in the region is along the Routes 30 and 10 corridor, where Lancaster and Chester Counties meet,” said Susan Wynne, senior vice president for business development at Lancaster General Health.
“The population is projected to grow by 7 percent and many residents in the community have expressed the need for better access to health-care services.
“This center will fulfill the need for more health care, from primary care to medical specialists and outpatient services that will be convenient to where people live.”
The planned outpatient center will be situated behind Hershey Motors in an area currently farm fields.
It will house physician offices, areas for blood draws and pre-surgery tests, a diagnostics area for X-rays and ultrasounds, and space for pulmonary testing and physical rehabilitation, said Joe Donaldson, strategic implementation engineer at Lancaster General.
The radiology department will be built with enough space to add imaging capabilities such as MRIs and CTs in the future, Donaldson said.
In addition, the outpatient center will offer physician-based urgent care for non-life-threatening conditions such as sprains and infections. That will be a step up from the nurse practitioner-based urgent care offered across the street at the Health Express.
The 36,000-square-foot, two-floor facility will also have a community conference room that can be used for community education, Donaldson said. Both floors will have ground-level entrances.
No date has been set for groundbreaking but Donaldson hopes for late fall to get work under way before winter sets in. Failing that, work will begin in the spring.
Access to the outpatient facility will be from Route 10, initially.
Route 10 highway improvements include turning lanes and road widening, said Frieda Schmidt, Lancaster General spokeswoman. In the future, the access road will be extended from Route 10 and intersect with Route 30 east of the routes 10 and 30 intersection.
The 63-acre site is being developed by Provco, which owns the land.
The outpatient facility is Phase I for the site, said W. Kent Silvers Jr., assistant vice president at Provco. Phase II will be a retail component. As yet, there is no timeline for Phase II, Silvers said.
Both township officials and the developer said residents have not voiced concerns about the outpatient center.
“The community is all for it. They have embraced the idea,” Silvers said, adding that having urgent care available means a parent who has a child with a fever on a Saturday night will now have a convenient place to take the child for treatment instead of a hospital emergency room.
Lancaster General’s plans have not escaped the attention of Brandywine Hospital, which is located less than 10 miles from the proposed development.
“As the closest hospital and primary provider of inpatient and outpatient services to the Parkesburg area, Brandywine Hospital will continue to meet the medical needs of this community,” said Bryan D. Burklow, Brandywine’s CEO. “ ... We work closely with our physicians to give their patients access to advanced services including cardiology, emergency, robotic surgery, neurosurgery, orthopedics and behavioral health. The community has relied on Brandywine Hospital for many years and can count on us to meet their healthcare needs for generations to come.”
To contact staff writer Gretchen Metz, send an e-mail to

How Hospitals Address Patient Experience via Mobile Apps

Source: HealthLeaders Media
Written by: Carrie Vaughan
The number of people using mobile technology is on the rise. In 2008, the number of smartphone subscribers was 15 million. That number almost doubled in 2009, reaching 26 million, and is expected to grow to roughly 142 million in 2011, according to Nielsen Mobile, which tracks wireless trends.
So it’s no surprise that creating smartphone applications is an area that hospitals want to take advantage of. “It is another new way of marketing and interacting with patients and potential consumers,” says Barbara Mackovic, senior marketing manager at Louisville,
KY–based Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s HealthCare (JHSMH). The world of communication is changing so rapidly, Mackovic says, that once you master one thing, it is already out of date. Mobile technology is “something that all marketers have to be aware of and figure out how that pertains to their target market,” she says.
Melissa Tizon, communications director at Seattle’s Swedish Medical Center, agrees. “At the end of the day, it is about what kind of experience patients are having with you. And if you can make that experience easier by putting something convenient on their phone, then those are the kinds of things that we want to do.”
Although mobile technology is an important feature that hospital marketers shouldn’t overlook, they also shouldn’t create an app just to be able to say they have one.
“There are so many [apps] that people download that aren’t used, so you have to think about what is useful,” says Tizon. Here is a look behind the two health systems’ mobile strategies.

Integrate mobile with other social media platforms
JHSMH is no stranger to social media: It already has a Facebook page, a Twitter feed, and a YouTube channel. But it was looking for another way to have daily interaction with its community, so in April 2010 it launched its mobile application. “We figured that this is a great way to communicate with [members of the community] on an ongoing basis and give them the tools that they needed, specific to our community and healthcare system, at their fingertips,” says Mackovic.
It was also an opportunity to take all of the social media tools that JHSMH was already using and tie them together in a single location. “To have an effective mobile app, it has to be a one-stop shop and bring together the entire social media plan all under a central element,” she says. “The more you can integrate, the better.”
When designing its free mobile app, JHSMH didn’t want a general app package that any hospital could implement. “We thought about what the community needed and what makes our health system unique,” says Mackovic, adding that one of the health system’s selling points is that it has seven emergency departments (ED) in the region and more than 200 employed physicians.
“We wanted to make sure people could find that ED or physician who was closest to them that meets the criteria that they are looking for—gender, after hours, specialty,” she explains.
With JHSMH’s app, people can search for services within a mile of their home, and the health system recently updated the app to include ED wait times. In addition, the app features current health news—not just JHSMH news. “Subscribers can see a feed of interesting health news, which is what we use our Twitter account for,” Mackovic says. The JHSMH app also includes a food diary and calorie tracker to emphasize the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
To promote the app, JHSMH used some basic media—a press release, an outdoor board on its campus, and some table tents in its cafeteria—but it has mostly focused on word of mouth.
“We haven’t done a lot of traditional marketing,” says Mackovic. “The thing about social media is it doesn’t make sense to advertise in a more traditional way, so we really utilized other social media channels.” For example, the health system posted an explanatory video about the app on its YouTube channel.
As of the end of March, more than 2,100 people have downloaded the app, which is available on iPhone® and BlackBerry® devices.
Focus on core services
Swedish Medical Center, a four-hospital system, also focused on promoting one of its core services and maintaining its relationship with patients when it launched its Kids Symptom Checker app.
The health system has a pediatric specialty care program and delivers more babies than any other facility in Washington, says Tizon. “We have all of these women who come into our facility to deliver their baby and have this incredible experience with us,” she says. “Then they leave and we don’t really see them again, so we have been doing a lot of work to try to maintain that relationship with women after they leave our facility after having their babies.”
To that end, Swedish has been providing health information on its website and now via its new mobile app, which launched this past fall on iPhone devices and was scheduled to be made available for Android™ devices this spring.
“It is really helpful to our family medicine physicians and pediatricians for their patients to have access to information, so I guess you could say that they were one of the biggest drivers for getting this information available,” says Tizon.
The app helps subscribers get quick advice about what may be ailing their child, and includes an anatomic index of topics, a pediatric drug dosage table, and infection exposure questions, as well as information on how to take a temperature and advice on when to call a doctor.
Swedish is promoting its Symptom Checker app through social media and with the help of its family medicine physicians and pediatricians, who are informing their patients about it. The health system plans to track the app’s return on investment by measuring its number of downloads and by tracking how many people heard about Swedish’s services through the app.
Making your mobile strategy a success
One of the key lessons JHSMH learned when developing its app was not to spend too much time on the front end trying to make it perfect. “We knew that we weren’t going to get it perfect the first time with version 1.0. It was not going to be the end-all app,” says Mackovic. “So we got it out there. People loved it, but they gave a lot of feedback.”
For example, subscribers wanted to search for available physicians and hospitals by mile radius, not ZIP code. Also, the initial version of the food diary had users search by food group, but users indicated that, for example, they would rather type in “hamburger” and have any food group that was in a hamburger pop up, she explains.
To solicit feedback, JHSMH set up a Zoomerang online survey when it launched the app. It also uses the social media tracking service Radian6 to monitor what people are saying in blog posts and on Facebook and Twitter. “We got it out there and got that feedback and then adapted it to make it the best,” says Mackovic.
“You need to think in small bites,” adds Tizon. “You can’t do it all and need to think about what is useful.”
Your first inclination might be to create a mobile version of your website,
Tizon says, but most hospital websites are huge, containing thousands of pages. Ask yourself whether people are going to use a phone for that, she says. Instead, Tizon suggests that health systems focus on small pieces of information such as pediatric health or way-finding.
“Rather than trying to put your arms around everything and making everything mobile, think about what are the small things that you can do that will be helpful,” says Tizon.

Carrie Vaughan is a senior editor with HealthLeaders magazine. She can be reached at

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Client News: Mon Health System Appoints New Chief Operating Officer

Linda Ollis, F.A.C.H.E., recently joined Mon Health System as Mon General Hospital’s new Chief Operating Officer (COO).

Originally from the Pittsburgh area, Ollis started her career in healthcare as a physical therapist at Allegheny Valley Hospital in Natrona Heights, PA. She later earned a Master’s Degree in hospital administration from the University of Pittsburgh, and is board certified in healthcare administration.

She brings to Mon General more than 32 years’ experience in senior hospital administrative roles. She has been a Vice President at University Hospitals of Cleveland, Sharp Healthcare in San Diego, Children’s Medical Center in Dallas and Christus Health System in Shreveport, LA. Most recently, she was the Chief Executive Officer of Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, NE.

Ollis is filling the COO position which was vacated by Darryl Duncan when he became Mon Health System President and Chief Executive Officer in February. She began her new role on June 21.

“In recruiting Linda, we sought someone who would help us get better, embrace our culture and keep an open mind about how to address the challenges we will be facing going forward,” said Mon Health System President and CEO Darryl Duncan. “I look forward to working with Linda to keep Mon General the hospital of choice for north central West Virginia. “

As COO, Ollis is responsible for the day-to-day management of the hospital. All hospital based services, including Patient Care, Medical Affairs and Quality and Information Systems report to her.

“While I was born and raised in the Pittsburgh area, I spent the majority of my adult life in other parts of the country, but have many ties with friends and family that kept me coming back for visits,” Ollis said. “Now I have the opportunity to blend the old and the new as I discover the beauty and attractions of Morgantown and West Virginia, as well as renew links with my nearby hometown.”

Ollis has been impressed with much of what she has experienced so far at Mon Health System.

“One of the most attractive attributes is the positive, innovative culture of Mon Health System,” she said. “Every employee that I’ve encountered in my short time here has spoken with pride of their commitment to providing the best care to our patients and families and their support for their co-workers. It’s clear that staff members feel like family and treat our patients as they would like to have their own family members treated.

“Staff place a priority on dignity and privacy for each individual that enters our facility,” she said. “Care and compassion are not just words to them, they live it every day. And our patients recognize that commitment as we can see from our patient satisfaction scores, among the highest in the state.

“There is also a strong sense of community here,” Ollis said. “The medical staff and leadership team are focused on the future, not only on expansion and growth, that includes the new Orthopedic Surgery Center and the Cancer Center, but also on constant improvement in patient care and quality outcomes. It’s why Mon Health System has received so many awards, such as the Blue Distinction Program (for orthopedics) and HealthGrades (patient safety) recognition. In the end, you succeed because of your people, and we have the best!”

Even though Mon Health System is well positioned for the future, there are a lot of changes coming in healthcare.

“The most challenging aspect of healthcare is that it’s in a constant state of change – technology, regulations and reimbursement,” she said. The changes aren’t going to stop, so it’s good that we have such superb teamwork and commitment in place. The real danger is complacency – especially when you’re doing well operationally and financially. We have to anticipate and embrace change and one of my roles will be to clarify and interpret, to make resources available.

Ollis noted that Mon General has been through quite a bit of construction in the past several years, and that construction is now underway for a new access road.

“It will be a joy to move into all the newly renovated space and welcome new care providers and patients,” she said. “We’ll have improved access with the new entrance to the hospital campus, which will increase our visibility, and wonderful new centers for orthopedics, cancer/infusion and endoscopy, as well as the cath lab renovations.”

Ollis and her husband of 28 years, John, are exited to be surrounded by the natural beauty of Morgantown and are looking forward to exploring the area and getting to know their neighbors.

Client News: ETMC's Stroke Care Program Recertified as Primary Stroke Center

Source: ETMC Press Release

ETMC Tyler’s stroke care program has been recertified as an Advanced Primary Stroke Center by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations with a Gold Seal of Approval.™
ETMC Tyler was the first hospital in East Texas and one of the first in Texas to receive this designation in 2005 with recertifications in 2007 and 2009. ETMC voluntarily pursued this designation in part because of the alarming rate of stroke-related deaths in East Texas. The Joint Commission conducted an on-site review this spring to review compliance with national standards, clinical guidelines and outcomes of care.
“The East Texas region has one of the highest stroke rates in our state,” said Todd Sigmon, ETMC Neurological Institute vice president. “Since part of the effort to earn the certification includes a focus on stroke prevention, we believe it will help us meet our goal to help change that factor in our region.”
To Qualify:
To qualify as a certified center a facility must establish standardized stroke protocols to assure consistent care for all stroke patients. Physicians and staff must also be educated in the diagnosis and treatment of stroke, and systems for continuous quality improvement must also be in place. “Our quality assurance efforts include a continuous review of patient data to determine ways to improve outcomes,” Sigmon said.
Additionally, educational and prevention efforts must be conducted for the general public. “ETMC conducts screenings regularly to help pinpoint problems that may lead to stroke, and we have an ongoing series of community education forums called KnowledgeFirst. Topics on stroke and vascular conditions are regularly included,” Sigmon said.
Each year about 795,000 people experience a new or recurrent stroke, which is the nation's third leading cause of death. Over 143,579 people die each year from stroke in the United States. Stroke is a leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States, with about five million stroke survivors.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Client News: Norton Healthcare Announces Grand Opening for New Cancer Center, Scheduled to Open August 1st

Norton Cancer Institute and Norton Healthcare have announced a series of grand opening events leading to the Aug. 1 opening of Norton Cancer Institute – Downtown, a new $26.4 million cancer treatment and research center located on Norton Healthcare’s downtown Louisville campus.
The series of events include a special open house for the public on Tuesday, July 26 from 2 to 5 p.m. The public can tour the new center, see the world-class technology, and view the facility’s special artwork and meditation areas. The center is located at 676 S. Floyd St. (northwest corner of Broadway & Floyd); open house parking is available in the Norton Pavilion parking garage at 634 S. Preston St.
In addition to the public event, Norton Cancer Institute and Norton Healthcare will conduct special grand opening events/open houses in late July for a variety of constituents, including board and leadership cabinet members, donors, physicians, employees, artists, construction and community partners, and many others.      
The 65,000-square-foot facility features a first-floor radiation center with world-class technology; a second-floor multidisciplinary center, including coordinated specialty care, along with cancer research via patient clinical trials; and third-floor shelled-in space for future growth of cancer services. The center will serve adult and pediatric patients of all ages for malignant cancers and certain non-malignant tumors, including brain, lung, breast, prostate, colorectal, stomach, pancreatic, kidney and others.
Norton Cancer Institute is the leading provider of comprehensive cancer care in Kentucky and Southern Indiana.

To view the Norton Cancer Institute's fact sheet, click here.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Independence Day!

 As we celebrate our nation's freedom,
we honor the courageous dedicated to preserving it.

Happy Independence Day!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Client News: ETMC Cancer Institute Reaccredited

The Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons has granted three-year accreditation with commendation to the cancer program at the East Texas Medical Center Cancer Institute. 
ETMC received the reaccreditation following the on-site evaluation by a physician surveyor in May. The commission is a consortium of professional organizations dedicated to improving survival rates and quality of life for cancer patients through education, standard-setting, prevention, research and monitoring the quality of cancer care. 
In 1990, ETMC’s Cancer Institute was the first oncology program in East Texas to be certified, placing it among the elite hospitals in the nation with approved cancer programs. 
“We are very pleased to have this approval again because it’s only given to facilities that have voluntarily committed to providing the highest level of quality cancer care,” said Todd Sigmon, vice president of the ETMC Cancer Institute.
Receiving care at a commission-approved cancer program ensures that a patient will have access to:
  • Comprehensive care, including a range of state-of-the-art services and equipment.
  • A multispecialty, team approach to coordinate the best treatment options.
  • Information about ongoing clinical trials and new treatment options.
  • Access to cancer-related information, education and support.
  • A cancer registry that collects data on type and stage of cancers and treatment results and offers lifelong patient follow-up.
  • Ongoing monitoring and improvement of care.
  • Quality care close to home.
The American Cancer Society estimates that more than 1.5 million cases of cancer will be diagnosed in 2011.