Weed ACH first RHC-C hospital to implement new electronic health record

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(Army photograph by Kimberly Hackbarth)
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MHS GENESIS, the Department of Defense’s new electronic health record, is slated to go live Sept. 26, 2020, at Fort Irwin, Calif.

Weed Army Community Hospital is the first military hospital within Regional Health Command-Central, which includes more than eight active duty hospitals, and the first hospital in the Army following the initial trial facility, to make the transition to MHS GENESIS.

When fully deployed, MHS GENESIS will provide a single health record for service members, veterans, and their families, according to the health.mil website.

Through MHS GENESIS, beneficiaries can view their health information, exchange secure messages with their care team, request prescription renewals, view notes from clinical visits, request medical and active duty dental appointments, and more.

Lt. Col. Meshelle Taylor, a program manager and the MHS GENESIS point of contact for Weed ACH, said the transition to MHS GENESIS will initially reduce appointment availability since appointments will be extended to one-hour appointments to accommodate the learning curve for providers and other staff using the new system.

The initial friction point will be partially mitigated with the use of virtual appointments and will ultimately lead to long-term benefits, the Camden, Ark. native stated.

“MHS Genesis will provide one inclusive record for in-patient, out-patient and dental care leading to safer quality care to our patients,” Taylor explained.

Phased approach

Staff at Weed ACH began preparing for MHS GENESIS in April 2019 and went through several phases to get ready for the transition.

The phases included online training, a sign-on fair, and a mock go-live.

Capt. Steven Fowler, the Weed ACH patient administration division chief and San Diego native, oversaw the sign-on fair and arranged the time slots for more than 400 employees to sign on and resolve any issues with the system.

“Sign-on fair is to validate that every individual who touches MHS GENESIS has their right account and the right accesses based off of their job,” he said.

Ten days before the launch, Weed ACH staff participated in a mock Go-Live event.

During the event, staff ran through scenarios to practice how they would use the system in real life.

From a patient checking in at the front desk, having a nurse take their vitals, being seen by a provider, all the way to picking up prescriptions from the pharmacy, many departments had a role to play in one or more scenarios.

Prior to the Go-Live on Sept. 26, beneficiaries are encouraged to create a Premium DS Logon account at https://myaccess.dmdc.osd.mil for access to MHS GENESIS Patient Portal.

For more information, visit https://www.health.mil/Military-Health-Topics/Technology/Military-Electronic-Health-Record/MHS-GENESIS.

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