Phoenix Children’s Hospital (Phoenix Children’s) is the only hospital in Arizona dedicated to children and one of the ten largest children’s hospitals in the nation. Phoenix Children’s is home to the state’s largest group of pediatric specialists and sub-specialists. As the hospital continues to evolve this world-class care, it’s working with leading local and national research partners to uncover new breakthroughs in pediatric medicine.
Phoenix Children’s IT department was being asked by their clinicians, support staff, and researchers to provide a wider variety of services with limited resources. Beyond that, the hospital’s legacy integration engine was increasingly proving to be too rigid for the organization’s evolving demands. Neither user-friendly nor scalable, the engine delivered messages with incomplete information, was unable to track the vast quantities of data coursing through the hospital’s IT infrastructure, and failed to offer the level of integration that Phoenix Children’s needed.
“A clinician would ask me for the details of a patient encounter on a specific day, three years earlier,” said Kevin Allen, the Hospital’s senior integration analyst, “and I would have to tell her that I was sorry, but that we only keep thirty days of information, since our integration engine didn’t support a data warehouse. That sort of dialogue was a regular occurrence, and it certainly didn’t do any favors for the IT department’s reputation within the Hospital.”
Additionally, the application team found themselves in an increasingly awkward position between their providers and their EMR application vendor.
Their EMR vendor was unable to accommodate requests to add fields and functionality Phoenix Children’s needed to add data to downstream messages and execute other tasks related to patient care.
“When we asked the vendor to add a specific field, they couldn’t, because not enough customers were asking for it. For just one field, to enter a single piece of data for an outbound message, the quotes would start at $5,000 and the vendor would propose a timetable of several months. That was unacceptable,” said Allen. “Ultimately, that lack of functionality was slowing down our processes and impacting patient care.”
Read the Case Study to learn how Phoenix Children’s Hospital approached the challenge and was able to achieve the new level of integration.