HHSC Recipient of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Care Innovation Award

HONOLULU, Hawaii – The Hawaii Health Systems Corporation has been named a recipient of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Care Innovation Award.

“We are honored to receive this funding,” said Bruce S. Anderson, Ph.D, president and chief executive officer of the HHSC.  “The collaborative efforts involved in the project will improve healthcare delivery for our island communities.”  This award recognizes  patient care at the State community hospitals on Oahu and the Neighbor Islands is expected to be greatly enhanced following today’s announcement that the Hawaii Health Systems Corporation (HHSC) has finalized a $28.7 million contract with Siemens Healthcare.  The agreement provides the public-hospital system with a complete hospital information system including a succession of integrated electronic medical record applications. The dynamic and seamless exchange of patient information will support enhanced care continuity and quality, and in turn assist HHSC acute care hospitals, critical access hospitals, long-term care facilities, physician clinics and their respective community physicians.

“Our top priority is the delivery of quality health care to the island communities that HHSC serves throughout the state of Hawaii.  After an extensive evaluation of EMR solutions and a collective approval by the HHSC facilities involved, Siemens was selected as the best solution for patients, hospital staff and medical staff,” said Bruce S. Anderson, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of HHSC.  “Our staff, at all levels, have been diligently working together on a system-wide initiative for over a year to identify the special needs of our hospital core functions, and then to select the qualified vendor who could best meet them.  Our evaluation team was very impressed with the high level of experience and dedication of the Siemens’ team, and look forward to working together.”

An EMR system allows health care professionals to rapidly and securely consult a complete record of a patient’s health history.  The installation of EMR system is a key step in the creation of an integrated health network with real-time access to patient information across the system – i.e., West Hawaii region: Kona Community Hospital and Kohala Hospital; Maui region: Maui Memorial Medical Center, Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital; Oahu region: Leahi Hospital, Maluhia and Kahuku Medical Center; and Kauai region: West Kauai Medical Center and Samuel Mahelona Memorial Hospital.

Unleashing new efficiencies and capturing quality improvement are examples of the many opportunities that will be enabled through the utilization of contemporary information technology. Driving-out manual intervention, modernizing workflow across the HHSC continuum of care, hard-wiring change, and proactively monitoring performance through real-time analytics are just a few of the essential elements sought by HHSC in pursuit of Meaningful Use as designated by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.

“HHSC is very fortunate to have the tremendous support of our state legislators and Governor Neil Abercrombie,” added Dr. Anderson.  “They clearly understand the importance of this major undertaking, in addition to the important role that HHSC continues to play in responding to the health care needs of our patients, Neighbor Island visitors, and tourists.”

The HHSC East Hawaii region – Hilo Medical Center, Ka’u Hospital, and Hale Ho’ola Hamakua – started its switch to EMR in May 2010, and will join the other regions in utilizing modules of the accompanying Health Information System (HIS) function for some of its financial applications (e.g., general ledger, accounts payable, and fixed assets).

“I am proud that HHSC has entrusted Siemens Healthcare to assist in achieving expanded access to clinical data throughout its island communities across Hawaii,” said John Glaser, PhD, CEO, Health Services Business Unit, Siemens Healthcare. “Siemens is honored to support HHSC’s dynamic community-hospital system in its mission to connect communities by extending the access and availability of clinical information, which can improve the efficiency and quality of healthcare.

The tentative implementation roll-out begins with Maui Memorial Medical Center (MMMC), followed by Kona Community Hospital and Leahi Hospital; West Kauai Medical Center and Kahuku Medical Center; Maluhia; Kula Hospital and Lanai Community Hospital; and then Kohala Hospital and Samuel Mahelona Memorial Hospital.  Maui Memorial Medical Center’s projected “Go-Live” date is November 2012, while Kohala Hospital and Samuel Mahelona Memorial Medical Center are expected to be running their systems in September 2013.

About Hawaii Health Systems Corporation

HHSC consists of five regional systems operating 9 facilities throughout the State of Hawaii: East Hawaii Regional system operates Hilo Medical Center, Ka’u Hospital, Hale Ho’ola Hamakua and Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home; West Hawaii Regional system operates Kona Community Hospital and Kohala Hospital; Oahu Regional system operates Leahi Hospital and Maluhia; and Kauai Regional system operates: Kauai Veterans Memorial Hospital, and Samuel Mahelona Memorial Hospital. HHSC has three nonprofit affiliates: Kahuku Medical Center operating a critical access hospital and long-term care facility in rural Oahu; Ali'i Community Care Inc. doing business as (1) Roselani Place providing assisted living on Maui, and (2) Ali'i Health Center: a physician practice in Kona; and Hawaii Health Systems Foundation.

Established by the Legislature in 1996, HHSC is a public benefit corporation of the State of Hawaii. As such, HHSC provides essential safety-net hospital and long term care services throughout the State. Since 1996, HHSC has and continues to fulfill the State’s promise to provide high quality, healthcare to all regardless of whether an individual has health insurance or the ability to pay for the healthcare services they receive.

HHSC Media Contact:
Debbie Hirano, CEO Secretary/Board Secretary
808-733-4151, dhirano@hhsc.org