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Aurora named one of the "100 Most Wired" health systems for 3rd consecutive year

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Most Wired hospitals lead the field in consumer-directed health care

Aurora Health Care has been named one of the Most Wired health systems for the 3rd consecutive year by Hospitals and Health Networks Magazine. Aurora is the only southeastern Wisconsin health care system to receive the recognition.

"Technology is an essential ingredient in helping us find better ways of delivering health care," said Philip Loftus, Aurora vice president of information services and CIO. It's a way to help improve safety for patients, decrease costs, enhance the quality of care and save lives."

Aurora's technological advances include the first all-digital hospitals in the state that make test results immediately available to all of a patient's care team via computer; electronic medical records, electronic prescription writing, Aurora eICU Care, robotic surgery, electronic storage of patient imaging tests, online prescription refills, and online connections between patients and physicians.

The nation's 100 Most Wired hospitals and health systems are helping consumers take charge of their health care by providing more tools via the Internet, according to results from the 7th annual Most Wired Survey. Among the findings:

  • 64% of Most Wired hospitals provide online health coaching for obesity, smoking and chronic conditions
  • 49% of Most Wired hospitals allow patients to pre-register for services from scheduling tests to appointments on-line
  • 32% of Most Wired hospitals allow patients to check test results online
  • 22% of hospitals provide patients the opportunity to visit a physician virtually

"Consumers are doing everything from booking travel to managing their finances from their living rooms. The Most Wired hospitals provide the same opportunities with health care," says Alden Solovy, executive editor of Hospitals & Health Networks, the journal of the American Hospital Association (AHA). "This will become the new house-call."

The nation's 100 Most Wired are also using information technology to improve quality, satisfaction and patient care by investing in technology to streamline business and clinical practices; to reduce medical errors; and to improve clinical outcomes, as follows:

  • 99% of the Most Wired hospitals provide digital radiology images in the hospital inpatient setting, compared with 72% of the Least Wired hospitals (defined as the 100 hospitals scoring lowest on the survey)
  • 92% of the medical records at Most Wired hospitals are available digitally, compared with 61% at Least Wired hospitals
  • 36% of medications are ordered electronically by physicians in Most Wired hospitals, compared with 2% among Least Wired hospitals.

"As consumers become increasingly involved in their health care decisions, the Most Wired hospitals are providing the technology infrastructure necessary to address their needs," said Lewis Redd, managing director of Accenture's Health & Life Sciences Provider practice in North America. "This investment in clinical systems technology helps enable high-performing providers to deliver higher-quality results and better service to their patients and consumers."

"Connected care often leads to better care, driven by the adoption of technologies that help to enhance decision-making and caregiver coordination," says Pamela Pure, president of McKesson Provider Technologies. "Over the next 5 years, we expect to see significant growth in the use of technology that also enhances collaboration outside the hospital, and that makes the consumer and patient experience more convenient and connected."

The Most Wired Survey is conducted annually by Hospitals & Health Networks magazine, which uses the results to name the 100 Most Wired hospitals and health systems. It focuses on how the nation's hospitals use of information technologies for quality, customer service, public health and safety, business processes and workforce issues.

Hospitals & Health Networks conducted the 2006 survey in cooperation with Accenture, McKesson Corp. and the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives. The July H&HN cover story detailing results is available at

About the Most Wired survey and benchmarking study

Hospitals & Health Networks, the journal of the American Hospital Association, conducts the voluntary Most Wired Survey and Benchmarking Study annually and names the 100 Most Wired.
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company.

McKesson Corporation is the world's largest healthcare services, technology and automation company.

CHIME was formed with the dual objective of serving the professional development needs of healthcare chief information officers and advocating the more effective use of information management within health care.

About Aurora Health Care

Aurora Health Care is a not-for-profit Wisconsin health care provider and a national leader in efforts to improve the quality of health care. Aurora offers care at sites in more than 90 communities throughout eastern Wisconsin.


Contact: Ron Irwin (414-647-3405)

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