Riding the WAVE of Interoperability

“Traditional EMS actually matters [because] it works.” With this statement, Evolution Health’s Brent Myers, MD, MPH, kicked off his keynote address at WAVE 2015, ESO Solutions’ national user group and conference being held at the JW Marriott in Austin, Texas.

Evolution Health’s Brent Myers, MD, MPH

Although Myers was speaking specifically about the expansion of EMS into community paramedicine and mobile integrated healthcare, the overall theme of EMS reaching out and partnering with others involved in the patient continuum of care resonates well with the focus on healthcare interoperability–the ability of different information technology systems and software applications to communicate and exchange data–that permeates much of WAVE 2015.

Breakout sessions included presentations from industry thought leaders like James Augustine, MD, FACEP, emphasizing how EMS agencies can harness the power of data to improve patient care, find efficiencies and improve QA/QI reporting. Other presentations included customer spotlights and product sessions focused on specific uses of the ESO Solutions family of products.

Conference programmers also thought outside the four walls of the ambulance with two sessions extending beyond the realm of EMS. The first included an introduction to HIMSS (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society), a large healthcare information technology industry group that lacks EMS representation and would welcome EMS participation in their national group and local chapters. Visit www.himss.org for more information.

ESO’s Allen Johnson introducing Chris French from Cerner

The second outside-the-box session was an exciting presentation by Chris French of health IT giant Cerner, announcing that Cerner and ESO Solutions are partnering on integrating prehospital data directly–and immediately–into Cerner’s hospital electronic health recordkeeping systems. Speaking in front of a packed house, French described a not-so-distant future when data collected and recorded by EMS would be seamlessly integrated upon (or even before) arrival to the ED. And the Cerner/ESO vision goes both ways: imagine being dispatched to a call and receiving not only dispatch data, but relevant medical information on your patient–all before you arrive at the patient’s side.

In a sobering closing keynote, Acadian Ambulance Service’s Texas  Medical Director Jeff Beeson, DO, shined a spotlight on health and safety data–from  ambulance crashes to bloodborne pathogen exposure–illustrating how it can be harnessed to improve the way we protect our workforce as well as the communities we serve.

The day closed with exciting news from ESO Solutions CEO Chris Dillie, as he laid out a roadmap for ESO and announced a “proclamation” to “build a first of its kind agnostic benchmarking platform for EMS.” By agnostic, Dillie means that everyone gets to play–no matter what patient care reporting system is used. The platform will drive adoption of core performance measures, such as those delivered by the EMS Compass initiative and will also allow EMS agencies to compare themselves to industry benchmarks. Dillie also unveiled the next generation of ESO electronic patient care reporting, revealing the results of a $5 million dollar development effort.

Day 2 of WAVE 2015 continues tomorrow with opening remarks by Eric Beck, DO, MPH, NREMT-P and additional breakout and product sessions.

 

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