UT Southwestern's tech innovations keep it among nation's 'Most Wired' hospitals
DALLAS – July 23, 2012 – UT Southwestern Medical Center’s patient-focused technological innovations – including a new smart phone app for health records – helped the institution receive national recognition as one of the “Most Wired” hospitals in the United States.
For the second straight year, UT Southwestern earned a place on the “Most Wired” list, which is distributed annually by Hospitals & Health Networks magazine, the flagship publication of the American Hospital Association.
“This honor recognizes our continuous commitment to leveraging technology to provide the best care possible to our patients,” said Dr. Bruce Meyer, executive vice president of health system affairs.
In all, 215 organizations across the country made the 2012 list. Children’s Medical Center Dallas, which is affiliated with UT Southwestern as its primary pediatric teaching hospital, also was recognized as a “Most Wired” hospital.
UT Southwestern has been an early and enthusiastic adopter of new technology designed to enhance the patient’s experience. This includes becoming the first health care facility in North Texas to switch to electronic medical records, an effort that began in 2002.
This commitment was driven by a gift from an anonymous donor, who challenged the university to develop an information technology infrastructure that would augment the quality of care provided to patients. Additional donations, including a $10 million endowment from Dallas philanthropists William and Gay Solomon, ensured that this infrastructure was used in ways that were truly patient-centric.
In 2005, the medical center introduced the electronic portal MyChart for patients to access their health records. MyChart has become more accessible in the last year with a free app available for iPhone, iPad and Android users. More than 50,000 UTSW patients use MyChart to pose questions to physicians, schedule appointments, and refill prescriptions over encrypted, secure connections.
“With the launch of an online performance management portal for physicians on campus, we now have more opportunities to apply our clinical research in unique and different ways,” said Suresh Gunasekaran, associate vice president for health system information resources. “We’ve also made a lot of progress on data warehousing and analytics.”
To compile its “Most Wired” list, Hospitals & Health Networks evaluated hospitals on information technology in four areas: infrastructure, business/administrative management, clinical quality/safety, and clinical integration.
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