Nurses Want EMR Rollout Postponed

RNs at Massillon, OH-based Affinity Medical Center are demanding that the 266-bed hospital delay the rollout of its new Cerner EMR, arguing that the hospital has done too little to train staff and has failed to involve direct-care nurses in the process of implementation, reports Healthcare IT News.

The hospital’s 250-odd direct care nurses, backed by national nursing union the National Nurses Organizing Committee, wrote a letter to the facility’s chief nursing officer  questioning the safety of the Cerner EMR, which they say prevents RNs from overriding the system in many cases.

The letter also notes that there has been no planned increase in staffing, nor has there been a decrease in the volume of elective procedures to be performed during the go-live process, Healthcare IT News says.

The hospital, for its part, denies that there’s a training gap for nurses. According to Healthcare IT News, the hospital said that it has followed Cerner guidelines, which recommend 16 hours of training for each nurse. Close to 95 percent of nurses have met this requirement, according to a hospital spokesperson quoted by the magazine.

Here at HospitalEMRandEHR we don’t know whether the nurses were able to convince the leaders at Affinity to postpone its official kickoff date, which was June 21st. But if there’s any substance to their complaints — and I strongly suspect there is, I hope management agreed to their request.  Going live with a staff of uncomfortable, less-than-fully trained nurses is a recipe for trouble.

About the author

Anne Zieger

Anne Zieger

Anne Zieger is a healthcare journalist who has written about the industry for 30 years. Her work has appeared in all of the leading healthcare industry publications, and she's served as editor in chief of several healthcare B2B sites.

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