A Strategic Road Map to Achieve EMRAM Stage 6 or 7
By Team Altus
Published Mar 14, 2019
| Updated Jun 28, 2022
| 15 min read
As healthcare continues to expand, hospitals have more challenges to look after, such as streamlining processes, reducing expenses, and improving clinician and patient satisfaction. Hospitals have to worry about all of these while continuing to comply with the dynamic industry standards, including the Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM) scores.
Having been around as far back as 2005, this strategic roadmap was created by HIMSS Analytics and a variety of industry partners to improve healthcare through the use of technology and information. In the current day, EMRAM is an eight-stage (on a scale of 0-7) model that measures the adoption and utilization of EMR (electronic medical records). It focuses on the results, patient engagement, and how much clinicians use EMRs when looking at how well a hospital adopted the new digital era.
As of January 1st, 2022 the standards previously used to determine a hospital’s EMRAM score have been updated and reintroduced to focus on a more outcomes-driven approach. The new criteria moved the requirement for privacy and security up to stage one to better match the current trends. The new model also allows hospitals to track their own scores and compare them to other hospital systems worldwide. Having an EMRAM score of 6 or 7 is more of a badge of honor than ever, and can make or break patient confidence. Keep reading for a guide on how to achieve an EMRAM score of 6 or 7 and keep patient confidence high.
Why EMRAM is Important
Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model rankings represent more than just a score. They show how high a hospital regards the quality of care, safety, and staff. EMRAM can also tell a patient how much the healthcare workers at that location care about their job. In fact, studies have shown that physicians who are a part of a hospital with a stage 7 score are generally more confident and satisfied overall.
What it takes for EMRAM Stage 6 or 7
HIMSS Analytics gives detailed rules on what hospitals have to do in order to achieve a score of 6 or 7. With the updates they’ve made to the program in recent years, the requirements focus more on the outcomes, and how smooth the process is for patients. Below are some of the most important requirements for both stages.
Structured or coded data from external sources has to be integrated into the Clinical Data Repository
Measure patient satisfaction using digital tools
Integrated medical devices into EMR
Evidence that the hospital has used EMR to improve patient safety
Reduce errors experienced when helping patients and increase patient satisfaction
Clinicians feel supported and empowered in their roles
All data is secured and protected from data leaks
For a complete breakdown of each stage, HIMSS Analytics lists them all. For hospitals wondering where they currently fall on the EMRAM scale, and how to improve their score, HIMSS Analytics also has a resource to help find all the information.
Medical equipment for easy EMR access
Achieving a stage 7 score can seem intimidating at first. Especially since clinicians move across a hospital, and can travel as much as 4-5 miles a day. The mobile nature of their work and helping numerous patients on their rounds makes it so that having instant access to EMRs and patient information is essential. The best way to allow clinicians instant access and help hospitals achieve a stage 7 score is by having mobile medical computer carts.
These types of carts provide easy point of care documentation. Clinicians are able to perform EMR charting no matter the size of the room, they can easily adjust powered carts and laptop carts to match the position they’re in. Computer workstations encourage patient and clinician interactions, which improves patient satisfaction and helps hospitals achieve a higher EMRAM score.
Mobile medical workstations, like ClioAir by Altus, offer enough battery charge for an entire shift. With the unmatched battery levels, clinicians can keep up the momentum without worrying if their technology will die. Implementing workstations like this throughout a hospital helps increase EMRAM since all information is able to be securely entered immediately with less chance of a nurse forgetting crucial information.
There are also computer workstations built specifically for medication delivery, like ClioMed, that improve patient safety for a stage 7 EMRAM score. These feature locking doors that use an interface that needs to be unlocked before the drawers will open. They are also RFID compatible. These medication delivery carts make distributing the correct medication easy so fewer patients receive the wrong dose or medication.
Hospital programs for raising EMRAM scores
Improving EMRAM scores is a less daunting process than it seems on the surface. There are various technologies that can be used to help ease the process. It is important to remember that it’s not just technology that will improve patient experience, and thus improve EMRAM scores. Having confident clinicians employed in healthcare facilities is a large portion as well.
Confident clinicians come from the training and environment of the hospital they work in. There needs to be a concrete system in place with specific training, tools, and resources for clinicians to follow. The system should meet each user’s needs, and share responsibility with IT leadership.
IT leadership and executive advocates are committed to continuously improving the process through collaboration and these concrete systems. The more these team members are involved in the creation of systems employed in hospitals, the more confident clinicians become, which in turn leads to a better EMRAM score
EMRAM scores mean more than just a number. They show the dedication hospitals have to creating a positive experience for clinicians and patients alike. Hospitals that have achieved a score of 6 or 7 show a high level of dedication, and a high emphasis on outcome-based results.
With the help of technology specifically geared toward improving the delivery of healthcare, EMR documentation software can be improved making a higher EMRAM score easier to attain. Contact Altus to learn more about our mobile computer workstations and how upgrading your computer cart fleet can improve EMR charting.