SC Health System Invests $40M in Epic EHR Platform for Interoperability

The Epic EHR implementation is set to advance interoperability across the health system, allowing providers to access patient data more easily for care coordination.

Tidelands Health, an affiliate of The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Health, is replacing multiple health IT systems with an Epic EHR to enhance health data interoperability.

The $40 health IT million investment is set to improve care coordination across the health system's four hospitals and over 60 outpatient locations. As a MUSC Health affiliate, the Tidelands Health EHR will also integrate with the MUSC Health Epic system, allowing patients and providers to see a complete view of patient care across both organizations.

"The implementation of Epic is a turning point for our patients, providers, team members, and health system," Gayle Resetar, executive vice president and chief operating officer for Tidelands Health, said in a press release.

The implementation will provide patients access to the Epic MyChart patient portal to view their medical records, schedule appointments, and pay bills online.  

"Epic makes the single patient record a reality at Tidelands Health," Resetar added. "But this isn't just installing new technology. It's using Epic's leading platform to usher in more efficient processes that leverage the already high-quality care we provide to enhance our patients' overall experience."

The transition to Epic will take place on March 2, 2024.

"This will truly transform the delivery of health care in our region," said Phil Dulberger, MD, Tidelands Health executive vice president and chief physician executive.

"Throughout the detailed build and implementation process, our physicians and leaders have looked through the lens of our patients as we made key decisions in tailoring the platform to our community's needs," Dulberger continued. "The result will be an enhanced experience for our patients."

Primary Care Practice Adopts Epic EHR System

Rhode Island-based Coastal Medical, an entity of Lifespan Corp., has transitioned to Lifespan's EHR and patient portal using Epic software, according to reporting from Providence Business News.

The new platform will allow patients to view their health data for Lifespan primary care locations, hospitals, specialists, laboratories, and imaging in one patient portal.

Patients will also have access to streamlined portal alerts for Lifespan test results, as well as additional functions such as online scheduling, appointment waitlists, and video visits for some kinds of appointments.

"Coastal Medical's adoption of Lifespan's EHR is cause for much excitement because it allows for one patient record to be shared by all Lifespan entities," Ed McGookin, president of Coastal Medical, said in a public statement. "This change will help to improve continuity of care, increase patient safety, and enhance operational efficiencies – a win-win situation for both our patients and our employees."

Montana Health System Invests in Epic Implementation

Montana-based Benefis Health System is implementing an Epic EHR system to improve the patient experience and streamline operations.

"We currently are on two different platforms, and Epic will allow us to consolidate onto one," Forrest Ehlinger, Benefis Health vice president of system business operations, said in a press release.

The unified platform will allow providers to access longitudinal health records for care coordination. Additionally, patients will be able to access their health data within a single patient portal.

"They'll be able to see the results of their lab tests, see the notes from their providers, communicate with their providers, as well as do things like schedule their appointments or pay their bills online," said Ehlinger.

Ehlinger noted that the Epic implementation is also set to enhance health data security.

"They have their own cybersecurity functions, and we really feel like we've chosen a good partner that's going to keep our patients' medical records secure," said Ehlinger.

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