Getting Connected with Health Care: May 22, 2014

When it comes to technology, the game-changers don’t stop at medical care. Computer advancements are bettering the patient experience.

“With the EPIC system, if you’ve ever been to one of our hospitals, if you have a Lee Physician Group doctor; we have your records here,” says Brittany Garrett. She’s a registered nurse with Lee Memorial Health System’s Convenient Care.

Electronic records follow patients through their health care journey, taking the burden off people to remember their health history.

“Some people are very surprised at how quickly they’re seen, because we don't have to go through that long list of medications or that long list of surgical history - because it’s already in the computer,” Garrett says.

Making the switch to e-records was only the beginning. Now people who engage with Lee Memorial Health System can monitor their medical records by peeking into a patient portal called MyChart.

“If you have a MyChart account you can actually communicate with any of the offices which you’ve been seen,” explains Dr. Leah Lynch.

Dr. Lynch was instrumental in the transition. Summaries of doctor visits, lab and imaging reports and medical orders are available for viewing. Patients can also message their doctor or request an appointment. All made possible by the switch to paperless.

“You need an electronic record to use a patient portal because that's the only way the data can go across an interface. So our first step was getting all of our hospitals and all of our offices in lee physician group live,” says Dr. Lynch.

Medical records are secure, because data never leaves the health system’s server. Patients are in essence looking through a window. As uses expand, it’s becoming a window to the future of health care.