Hospital Sisters Health System (HSHS) has been named “Most Wired” by the 19th Annual Health Care’s Most Wired® survey, released today by the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Health Forum. The survey showed that technology is making it easier for patients and providers to interact. The investments hospitals and health systems, such as HSHS, have made in technology has been shown to improve communication, safety and patient-provider relationships. Furthermore, these new tools are helping patients become more actively involved in their care and maintaining their health.
HealthCare’s Most Wired® survey, conducted between Jan. 15 and March 15, 2017, is published annually by Health & Hospitals Networks (H&HN). The 2017 Most Wired® survey and benchmarking study is a leading industry barometer measuring information technology (IT) use and adoption among hospitals nationwide. The survey of 698 participants, representing an estimated 2,158 hospitals — more than 39 percent of all hospitals in the U.S. — examines how organizations are leveraging IT to improve performance for value-based health care in the areas of infrastructure, business and administrative management; quality and safety; and clinical integration. Health care organizations must meet specific requirements of each of these four areas to be named “Most Wired.”
“Our dedicated and knowledgeable IT team at HSHS has worked tirelessly to bring the most advanced technology to our hospitals and clinics for our patients,” Mary Starmann-Harrison, HSHS President and CEO, said. “We have successfully integrated technology into every part of our health system, from patient care to our administrative operations. I’m extremely proud of our IT team and for this recognition that they have deservedly earned.”
In recent years, HSHS has leveraged technology to give patients several treatment options, which is especially critical in small, rural communities when seconds count. For instance, telemedicine, which provides quick access to specialists that are miles away, is used in a variety of ways in local hospitals HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville, and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland. Some examples include:
St. Joseph’s Hospital Breese’s Women and Infants Center and Medical Imaging are able to connect with SSM Cardinal Glennon neonatal physicians for 3D Ultrasound and newborn nursery consultations.
In the Emergency departments at both St. Joseph’s Hospitals in Breese and Highland, hospital staff use telemedicine to access specialists at HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville when advanced evaluation is needed for pediatric patients or for those patients experiencing a stroke.
At St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland, tele-cardiac health helps St. Joseph’s provide efficient specialty care to their community in times of need. When a cardiologist is not on site in Highland, hospital physicians and nurses can quickly access Prairie Heart physicians virtually to help diagnosis and treat cardiac disease and conditions.
HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville recently received a Telemedicine Pioneer Award from the Illinois Telehealth Network (ITN) for their ground-breaking work in designing and operationalizing a new tele-psychiatry program to prevent Holy Family’s inpatient Senior Wellness and Geriatric Psychiatry program from closing when the sole psychiatrist provider gave notice of intent to move his private practice to care for more patients in a wider geography. HSHS Holy Family launched tele-psychiatry on April 1, 2017, with no lapse in care, and no change in provider.
In addition to telehealth technology, HSHS has taken measures to ensure the security of patient information through the use of intrusion detection systems, and is transforming care delivery with the knowledge gained from data and analytics.
“Our technology initiatives have really strived to focus on patient-centered and patient-first care,” Dr. Ray Gensinger, HSHS Chief Information Officer said. “Technology has enabled us to serve patients and deliver high-quality health care like never before. Our efforts are cost-effective and convenient for the patients, which is the top priority.” Detailed results of the survey and study can be found in the July issue of H&HN. For a full list of winners, visit www.hhnmag.com.
Telemedicine services are provided at all the hospitals in the Southern Illinois Division of Hospital Sisters Health System, which includes HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Belleville, HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital in Effingham, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville, and HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Highland.