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Cygnus: Workstation Solutions for Healthcare

Cygnus creates wood and metal computer workstation solutions with a focus on the healthcare industry. Wall mounted computer desks, charting stations, articulating arms and medication cabinets are some of our largest sellers. Also visit our Social Media page and connect with us. http://www.cygnusinc.net/get_social_with_cygnus.html

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Cygnus Advantage: Customization

Cygnus has been designing and manufacturing healthcare product solutions since 1988. We have developed a reputation for finding unique solutions to problems faced by the industry.

Custom Workstation and Storage
We are often asked to combine medication storage, a CPU compartment, and a swing out arm to hold a monitor, keyboard and mouse, all in a cabinet that is as small as possible. Because all of our cabinets are designed with a metal chassis, we are able to maximize the space inside an extremely strong cabinet.

Our experienced team of professionals is able to reconfigure one of our standard products or design an entirely new solution for your facility. It starts with one of our experienced sales managers. The sales manager is responsible for acquiring a variety of detailed information to present to our design engineer. The design engineer then provides commercial grade renderings to present to the client. The client can approve the renderings or request changes on the overall design, appearance or functionality. These renderings can be used by the client to share with their staff for further review.
Workstation using 42" Monitor

Once the conceptual design is approved, we start to add more details to the project and answer several questions. How convenient will it be to use? How difficult will it be to install and use the computer or other equipment? Is the product easy to clean and maintain?

The final design work takes into account how we manufacture and assemble the product. This is the specific detailed information needed by our manufacturing team to produce the best possible product.
Charting station with medication storage

See more customized examples.

Because all these steps are necessary to make a project successful, it is important to work with a company that does in-house manufacturing, design, testing and final assembly. If a company does not offer these services they will need to take shortcuts with your project.

Please contact our offices anytime to speak to a knowledgeable sales professional who will be able to answer any questions you may have.  
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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Meaningful Use Dropout Rate At 17 Percent | EMR and EHR

Meaningful Use Dropout Rate At 17 Percent | EMR and EHR:

Jul 02, 2013 09:10 am | By: Anne Zieger

In theory, once a provider achieves Meaningful Use and picks up their first check, one might think that they’re on board and ready to power through the program. Well, think again.
According to a piece published in HIT Consultant, 17 percent of providers who got an $18,000 EMR check in 2011 didn’t get the second $12,000 incentive payout in 2012.  The stats come from a recently published analysis of the federal April EMR attestation data crunched by Wells Fargo.
What that means, in real terms, is that 17 percent of providers were able to demonstrate MU for the 90 days required in 2011 but couldn’t keep things up for the full year required for to get the second check, notes Evan Steele, CEO of EMR firm SRSsoft, who authored the article.
You’d think that providers could have demonstrated a year’s compliance, given that after 90 days they already had the needed workflows in place to support those requirements, but for nearly 20 percent of providers, it seems that simply wasn’t the case, Steele says. And this is very bad news, he suggests:
A 17% loss rate in any business is wholly unacceptable, and this failure does not portend well for the future of the EHR Incentive Program. If $12,000 proved to be insufficient motivation for physicians with meaningful use experience to meet the relatively low requirements of Stage 1 on an ongoing basis, it would be foolish to expect physicians to muster the wherewithal to meet the increasingly demanding requirements of Stage 2. The incentive for a year’s performance at that point will be a mere $4,000.
Thinking that perhaps the 17 percent dropoff trend will correct itself as time passes?  Probably not. As Steele points out, another survey recently found that 14 percent of physicians who attested to Stage 1 already say that they don’t intent to attest to Stage 2.
As Steele sees it, this is evidence that we need to simplify Meaningful Use rather than making it increasingly complex, while focusing on interoperability across the entire healthcare system.  In his view, if we don’t “the entire program will go down the drain.”
I don’t know if these numbers are evidence that Meaningful Use is on the skids, but a 17 percent dropoff is certainly troubling. Clearly something must be done to reach out to providers who’ve climbed off the train.
July 2, 2013 I Written By 
Anne Zieger is veteran healthcare consultant and analyst with 20 years of industry experience. Zieger formerly served as editor-in-chief of FierceHealthcare.com and her commentaries have appeared in dozens of international business publications, including Forbes, Business Week and Information Week. She has also contributed content to hundreds of healthcare and health IT organizations, including several Fortune 500 companies.

'via Blog this'
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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Security Compliance: Using Online Resources to Meet the HIPAA Training & Awareness Requirements

June 5, 2013
Security Compliance: Using Online Resources to
Meet the HIPAA Training & Awareness Requirements
If you have not trained your staff or confirmed that your business associates fully understand the protection of PHI (personal health information), your patient data may be at risk? You may also be vulnerable to a CMS audit.
There are many options for training of staff, including creating training materials in-house, attending boot-camps or requiring staff to complete training online. Learn more about each of these options - the costs and the steps involved.
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Monday, May 6, 2013

Study: EMRs Have Saved Canadian Health System $1.3B Since 2006

Study: EMRs Have Saved Canadian Health System $1.3B Since 2006

May 03, 2013 06:16 am | By: Anne Zieger from www.emrandehr.com

At our current stage of EMR implementation, the evidence is sketchy at best that EMRs are draining costs from the U.S. health system.  But our friends to the north seem to be capturing tangible savings, according to new research by Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP (PwC).

The PwC study, which was backed by the Canada Health Infoway, a not-for-profit whose focus is accelerating the development of EMRs by family physicians, looked at the implementation of EMRs by family doctors across Canada.  The study focused on the period between 2006 and 2012.

Adoption of EMRs by primary care doctors in Canada has more than doubled between 2006 and 2012, from 23 percent to 56 percent, Healthcare Informatics reports. These EMR investments were paid for largely through investments by the provinces and territories in EMR programs, medical practices and  Infoway.

According to Healthcare Informatics, PwC found that during that period, the Canadian system saved $800 million Canadian dollars in administrative efficiencies, such as staff spending less time pulling charts and less time by doctors reading and maintaining paper files.

PwC also found savings of $584 million Canadian dollars in health system efficiencies, such a drop in duplicated diagnostic testing and adverse drug events.

In addition to concrete financial savings, EMR adoption improved chronic disease management and preventive care, such as mammogram screening rates.  EMR use also improved communication between care providers, as EMRs allowed new providers to quickly and easily research histories on patients without resorting to archaic fax communications.

As part of PwC’s research, they cited examples which paint the picture of how EMRs are changing healthcare in Canada.

Since implementing EMRs, PwC notes, 67 percent of Saskatchewan’s family doctors, office managers and specialists say that their medical practices are more or significantly more productive than before.  Also, 94 percent of of doctors enrolled in Alberta’s EMR program said that patients get their test results faster; in addition, 97 percent said that they’re not needlessly repeating tests and investigations.

Read more at www.emrandehr.com
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Thursday, April 18, 2013

Boston Marathon case shows health IT gaps to be fixed in next phase of Massachusetts’ HIE

The pair of explosions near the finish line at yesterday’s Boston Marathon sent more than 100 patients – several of them in serious or critical condition – to unexpecting area hospitals. 

The way those patients were dispersed among the hospitals shows good coordination and planning on the part of the city and emergency responders, said David Delano, a project director at Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative. Similarly, John Halamka told FierceHealthIT that the technological infrastructure at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, where he’s CIO, held up and served the hospital well during yesterday’s events. 

But one area where there’s room for improvement in the process of emergency response is the way information about those patients is, or in this case isn’t, available to the medical personnel who treat the injured. Delano observed that yesterday’s events provided an exact example of a circumstance that phase two of Massachusetts’ health information exchange initiative, Mass HIway, is targeting. 

In the first phase, Mass HIway focused on enabling the secure exchange of electronic medical records between participating providers. That’s helpful when providers know which patient they’re expecting and can request medical records ahead of time. 

It’s not so helpful, though, in situations like yesterday, where there’s no time to request patient records ahead of time. “You had multiple people from different parts of the state, maybe even different parts of the country, showing up in hospitals where they’ve likely never been seen before,” he said. Without having information about a patient’s medical history, current medications, allergies, etc., which all affect how a patient is treated, physicians are left to do their best piecing together what they can about a patient. That may mean rifling through their clothes or belongings and ordering lab tests, which take time and cost money. 

The second phase of MassHIway will create a query capability for providers that participate in the network, so that if a patient has a medical record that exists in a different participating facility’s system, and if that patient had consented to having it shared, the system will be able to find and retrieve it without any delay. 

With HIEs that have this capability, emergency department personnel can search for a patient’s record immediately upon his arrival or even as he’s being transported to the hospital. In hospitals connected to the Indiana Health Information Exchange (IHIE), for example, the system searches for a patient’s record automatically when he’s registered to the ED. “Before the triage nurse even knew that patient was on the premises, they would have access to a patient summary and the option to visit a web portal where they could get more detailed information,” said John Kansky, vice president of strategy and planning for IHIE. 

Being able to run that kind of query in a situation like the one that played out in Boston yesterday is the holy grail of the HIE network, Delano said. But for now, at least in Massachusetts, the gap is still there. 

MAeHC is working with the Executive Office of Health and Human Services and the Massachusetts eHealth Institute to oversee the governance and implementation of Mass HIway. Delano chairs the technology committee workgroup and is spearheading efforts to design this statewide patient index and record locator service. 

He said he hopes to have that piece up and running by the fall. “The way that Mass HIway is coming together is in a series of available services for facilities to utilize,” he said. “It’s not like we’re going to turn on a light switch and all the lights are going to come on. They’re infrastructure services that facilities can use in a variety of ways.” 

All work won’t be done, though, when that piece rolls out. There are plenty of other opportunities to continue innovating what HIEs can do. For example, Delano noted it would be helpful for medical data to be transferred electronically between a hospital and an ambulance. “Most of those services rely on cellular communication [...] but in situations like yesterday, the cellular networks were jammed,” Delano said. 

Then there’s the idyllic idea of connecting various state’s HIEs to form a national network where EMRs can be exchanged. But make no mistake, we’re a long ways away from that. 

“Market by market, the HIE functionality is still all over the board, and it’s going to take a lot more years and a lot more dollars to get to the point where (a patient’s) record is available in an emergency department, period,” Kansky said. “That functionality goes far beyond the current Meaningful Use pattern that they’re on. Meaningful Use 2 or 3 is not an endpoint.”
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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Hand-washing protocol

I'm curious what everyone thinks about the following article I found about the GE Healthcare hand-washing monitoring system. To me, it seems like something that SHOULDN'T need monitoring but hearing about recent stats about hospital infections, could this be something that can make a change?

Summerville Medical Center recently finished participation in a nearly one-year pilot program with GE Healthcare to monitor hand-washing protocol using employee badges and software-connected soap dispensers. 

The medical center has now integrated the AgileTrac Hand Hygiene Monitoring technology into its regular operations. 

Hospital-acquired infections had not been a problem at Summerville Medical, executives said, but they acknowledged that nationally one in every 20 patients acquires an infection while being treated. 

The pilot technology and program created by GE Healthcare was intended to keep the hospital’s infection rate low.

“It really was an honor and a unique experience to be involved with something that was a development project,” said Louis Caputo, CEO of Summerville Medical Center.

The system involves a software program that tracks and analyzes data sent to it from the hardware found on about 300 employee badges and at every soap and hand-sanitizer station in clinical areas. Sensors in patient rooms track when an employee enters the room and whether they wash their hands within 30 seconds of entering that room.

Summerville Medical Center was selected to pilot the program because of the hospital’s long-standing relationship with GE Healthcare, said Fran Dirksmeier, general manager of global asset management with GE Healthcare.

“We had our products already installed,” he said, adding that GE also offers software to manage and reduce patient wait times throughout the hospital.

Every day, Caputo and other management staff track how compliant the hospital’s employees were with washing their hands through a dashboard on their computers. Prior to using this technology, “secret shoppers” would pay visits to the hospital and watch to see whether doctors sanitized their hands before entering patient rooms.

Caputo said the old method typically recorded between 80 and 85 observations per month. The GE technology records between 5,000 and 8,000 hand-washing events daily.

Dirksmeier said the success of the Summerville program has led GE to roll out the technology at five other hospitals nationwide. Trident Medical Center will be installing its system in the coming months.

The cost of implementing the program varies based on the number of patient rooms, staff size and amount of GE infrastructure already in place, Dirksmeier said. He estimates that an average hospital starting from scratch would have to pay $250,000 for the technology.
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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

One Doctor’s EMR Usability Wish List

Another great post on emrandehr.com's blog
Posted: 18 Mar 2013 07:38 AM PDT
In this space, we talk a lot in the abstract about how physicians feel about EMR usability. Today, though, I wanted to share with you some great observations from a KevinMD.com piece by an angry anesthesiologist who lays out her own usability wishlist for EMRs and health IT generally.

In the piece, Dr. Shirie Leng fumes over the sheer work it takes for her to negotiate the systems she uses at her hospital. She notes that over the course of doing eight cases during a day, she’ll a) sign something electronically 32 times, b) type her user name and password into three different systems a total of 24 times and c) generate about 50 pages of paper given that the the computer record must be printed out twice.

To Dr. Leng, there’s ten steps institutions can take to eliminate much of the hassle and waste:

1. Eliminate user names and passwords:   She suggests using biometric sign-in technology.

2. Eliminate the paper:  Why print data that’s already entered into the system, she asks?

3. Make data systems compatible and 4. Make everyone statewide use the same system:  Dr. Leng says it’s crazy that we don’t have interoperability within hospitals or between different institutions.

5. Don’t make her turn the page:  “All the important information about a patient should be on the first page you open when you look at a patient,” she says. “I shouldn’t have to click six different tabs.”

6. Don’t make her repeat herself: If she does several cases the same way, with the same documentation each case, don’t make her re-enter it every single time.

7. Invest in voice-recognition software:  During patient interviews, Dr. Leng notes, she wants to look at patients and talk, not hunt and peck at the keyboard or worse, spend hours later typing in data or clicking checkboxes.

8. Go completely wireless:  Not an EMR point, but a good one nonetheless: why make doctors untangle cords and monitoring wires?

9. Hire a typist if you need one:  Don’t turn nurses into data entry clerks, she argues. Right now they have massive amounts of data entry piled onto their plate.

10. Triple back-up the system:  Paper doesn’t crash but computers do, she notes.
So there you have it, a list of EMR and health IT concerns straight from a practicing physician. I think all her points deserve attention.

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