Command center: Another day, another go live (and some uke songs)

I’m here at YVMC: Yampa Valley Medical Center in Steamboat CO for Friday’s Epic EHR go live. Setting up the command center, at least half the room is festive. Prepping for the inevitable phone calls. We are finishing up our Preflight sessions, an innovation we created to get docs ready for the big day. Beyond the classroom and online training, we put docs in front of our Physician Informaticists to discuss actual workflow and also to double check that they can login successfully, and finally to teach them some personalization within the EHR:

  • Create some auto-correct phrases to expand common abbreviations into readable words
  • Learn how to build macros for physical exam and review of systems
  • Learn how to build smartphrases for commonly typed statements that docs say: risks and benefits, usual treatment for common conditions, the ABCDE of melanoma screening, any of a dozen common items.
  • ‘Wrench in’ frequently used quick-reports that docs of that specialty use, to get at problem lists, diabetes reports, flowsheet trends

It is fascinating to meet a new crew of physicians. Fun to see what local culture has m built. We are proud to be joining such a reputable hospital in our front range and have them join the UCHealth family.

Reminds me of a ukulele song (I’ve Been Everywhere Man). And also Hospital of the Rising Sun.

Maybe this time there will be time to record ‘Epic Central.’ We’ll see.

CMIO’s take? It is good to be growing. Better than the alternative. Reminds us of the importance of our work, our vision for the Physician Informatics group: ‘We improve physician and team wellness and effectiveness by building extraordinary relationships and innovative tools.’

Prescriptive Intelligence and the OR at UCHealth (news article)

from revcycleintelligence dot com via thinkstock

Proud of our COO and CIO and their efforts to revolutionize our Operating Room Efficiency through machine learning as well as some social engineering.

SBAR statement

Situation: Operating Rooms are some of the most expensive real estate in a hospital. How can we improve utilization rates in the face of surgeons protecting their OR time (motivations are not aligned), AND there is poor, non-realtime data on OR utilization?

Background: OR block times are allocated to surgeons (CT Lin gets Tuesdays all day and Thursday mornings in OR #3; just kidding, I’m not a surgeon). CT Lin thus protects his time slot. Sometimes he’s busy and uses the entire time, but often he doesn’t need all that time; and an OR team (anesthesia, nurses, techs) sit around idle. How can we use modern tools, social engineering, data analytics to improve utilization WITHOUT building lots more Operating Rooms?


  1. Apply machine learning to several years of OR scheduling data. Figure out that there is a way to ‘shape’ the OR schedule from previous experience so that each operation lasts as long as it needs to.
  2. Figure out how to move blocks around to use the same allocated time more fully.
  3. Create a social media “OR block exchange” tool to allow surgeons to release block time without penalty and bid for unused blocks when needing extra OR time.
  4. Create incentive that those who ‘release’ blocks consistently and keep their actual OR usage percentage high, get first dibs on any unused blocks. Win-win!
  5. Result; $10M increase in revenue from better utilization, no need to build new OR’s.  Read the linked article for details.


CMIO’s take? Wow, love it when innovation is more than just talk. Proud of  the results of our Innovation work.


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