SOURCE: McKesson

July 20, 2005 08:00 ET

McKesson VIP Awards Recognize Excellence at Top Healthcare Organizations

Healthcare IT and Automation Drive Exceptional Results

ATLANTA, GA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 20, 2005 -- From bar codes to Web-based information access to process re-engineering in surgical suites, organizations around the world are using McKesson technologies to improve quality, safety and efficiency in the delivery of healthcare. Today the company announced the winners of its fifth annual McKesson VIP Awards for outstanding vision, innovation and performance in healthcare information technology (IT).

The awards honor providers that achieve significant results in core healthcare processes such as clinical delivery, medication management, staff productivity, operational efficiency and the use of electronic medical records. Factors considered by an independent panel of judges include improvements in patient safety, clinical outcomes, physician IT adoption, clinician workflow, resource utilization or planning, and financial performance. Each VIP Award winner receives a $10,000 donation from McKesson to its foundation or charity of choice.

"The VIP Award gives McKesson an opportunity to recognize organizations that have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in vision, innovation and most importantly, the achievement of results in healthcare IT," said Jay Deady, vice president of marketing, McKesson Provider Technologies. "From increased safety and quality to greater efficiency, this year's VIP Award winners are demonstrating the transformational value that IT can provide in healthcare."

For the second year, McKesson recognized outstanding accomplishments in Medication Management, an award category established to acknowledge the importance of combining software, automation and process redesign in improving medication safety. This year's winner was John Muir Medical Center of Walnut Creek, Calif. The hospital used IT, bedside bar-code scanning of patient medications, and process analysis and redesign to change beliefs and practice patterns to significantly improve the medication use process. Staff compliance with bar-coding procedures improved to 94 percent house-wide, and to 96 percent in adult medical-surgical and critical care units. As clinicians embraced the blame-free culture and technology, potential medication errors and adverse drug events decreased.

The remaining 2005 VIP Award winners span a variety of healthcare delivery processes, attaining results that range from financial benefits to user and patient satisfaction. They are as follows:

Concord Hospital, Concord, N.H. -- Challenged with a growing volume of film-based diagnostic images and the need to make them available to more than 300 community physicians, Concord turned to diagnostic imaging and Web portal technologies. The hospital implemented Horizon Medical Imaging™, a picture archiving and communications system (PACS) that digitizes and distributes images. Concord also deployed HorizonWP® Physician Portal, which makes images and reports available online along with nursing notes, test results, prescriptions and other patient data generated from its four locations. With information available "anytime, anywhere," physician adoption of electronic medical records climbed quickly, and user satisfaction skyrocketed. Radiology exam readings increased, and Concord saved $400,000 in film costs for its 145,000 annual imaging studies. And with clinicians viewing images online, film requests dropped by 75 percent.

Methodist Medical Center of Illinois, Peoria, Ill. -- Already a pioneer in the use of technology to advance patient safety by using bar-code technology to cut 50 percent of inpatient medication errors, the 353-bed hospital is now using healthcare IT to connect 30 clinics and physician practices to the hospital. Using Horizon Ambulatory Care™, connected physicians write more than 35,000 electronic prescriptions monthly, and paper charts for medication-related issues have been virtually eliminated. Medication-related phone calls have dropped 70 percent, with refill-related chart requests reduced by 93 percent. In addition, Methodist estimates it will save $300,000 in external transcription fees.

St. Vincent's Hospital, Birmingham, Ala. -- To achieve its goal of a seamless care environment, St. Vincent's used healthcare IT to automate processes throughout its facility. In the ER, patient data is input on bedside wireless devices, becoming part of the patient's electronic medical record. If surgery is required, Horizon Surgical Manager™ generates a real-time chart at the point of care, tracking clinical events. Physicians order medications through Horizon Expert Orders™, prompting pharmacists to electronically acknowledge receipt, verify medications and send bar-coded, unit-doses to automated dispensing cabinets. HorizonWP Physician Portal provides clinicians secure anytime, anywhere access to patient information. IT results at the "digital hospital" are impressive: a 50 percent reduction in medication errors, a 33 percent increase in surgical case volume through greater efficiency, double-digit improvements in patient satisfaction, increased hospital admissions, and a 31 percent rise in hospital revenues.

Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System (SRHS), Spartanburg, S.C. -- A manual, paper-based requisition process, increasing medical supply inventory costs and an inability to effectively track supplies in nursing units were catalysts for change at SRHS. Using McKesson software, robotics, just-in-time medical-surgical supply replenishment and consulting services, SRHS automated every step in the supply chain process. The results speak for themselves. Over the past six years, SRHS has reduced inventory by 50 percent, saving $4.2 million. Today the order fill accuracy rate is 99.97 percent across three hospitals, and significant warehouse space has been freed up to expand administrative offices and the materials management department.

St. Joseph's Healthcare, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada -- When the Canadian health ministry issued a mandate requiring the reporting of dialysis clinic visits, St. Joseph's Healthcare was faced with a challenge -- address the directive in a short time frame without additional funding or staffing. St. Joseph's used McKesson's STAR 2000™ hospital information system to develop a patient processing and reporting procedure that met regulatory compliance for its more than 65,000 annual dialysis visits. By optimizing the coding and abstracting capabilities of its STAR applications, St. Joseph's cut its dialysis reporting to 35 days, well under the government's 60-day maximum. The hospital also decreased error rates and increased abstracting productivity by 400 percent -- work which would have normally required two additional employees. For its efforts, St. Joseph's won VIP Award honors in the International category.

An independent panel of experts served as judges for the 2005 VIP Award, bringing their healthcare expertise to bear in a rigorous evaluation of submissions. These judges included:

--  Diane Appleyard, president and CEO, Healthcare Research and
    Development Institute, a think tank of leading healthcare system
--  Dominic Covvey, professor, Faculty of Science, University of Waterloo
    in Canada, and founding director of the Waterloo Institute for Health
    Informatics Research.
--  Kent L. Gale, founder, managing partner and executive director of KLAS
    Enterprises, LLC.
--  Cynthia D. Jones, CIO, St. Luke's Hospital & Health Network, a four-
    hospital, 750-bed health system in eastern Pennsylvania.  President-elect
    of InSight, an independent McKesson solutions user group.
--  Charles S. Lauer, vice president of publishing/editorial director,
    "Modern Healthcare" magazine.

About McKesson

McKesson Corporation is a Fortune 15 healthcare services and information technology company dedicated to helping its customers deliver high-quality healthcare by reducing costs, streamlining processes and improving the quality and safety of patient care. Over the course of its 170-year history, McKesson has grown by providing pharmaceutical and medical-surgical supply management across the spectrum of care; healthcare information technology for hospitals, physicians, homecare and payors; hospital and retail pharmacy automation; and services for manufacturers and payors designed to improve outcomes for patients. For more information, visit us at

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