Carle Foundation Launches Virtual Epic EHR Go-Live

Many healthcare organizations delayed their EHR implementations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Carle Foundation Hospital, a large integrated health system based in Champaign, Illinois, and Pivot Point Consulting worked together to rapidly “pivot” plans at the 11th hour – a pivot that not only resulted in a successful go-live on April 1, but also cost savings and virtual efficiencies.

As the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, Carle was underway with an Epic EHR implementation including a recently acquired community hospital and 6 affiliated multi-specialty clinics. It was critical for Carle to have this newly acquired hospital on the same EHR while balancing the safety of staff and patients.

Carle worked with their partner, Pivot Point Consulting, to rapidly shift all class-room training to remote / Web-ex based sessions, virtualize the 24 X 7 “Command Centers” hub staffed by Carle and Pivot Point Consulting EHR experts and create a hybrid “At the Elbow” support model that fit hospital resource needs and provided remote support, where appropriate.

David Gorrell, Director Project Management Office, says, “Pivot Point Consulting has been a great partner for us in our large IT initiatives and has provided quality IT resources to temporarily augment our staff and fill in where needed. Not only do the folks they provide have the skills and expertise, they do quality work. We really just view them as an extension of our internal team and true partners.”

The remote support model resulted in the closing of the Command Center one week early and the virtualization of training and go-live support resulted in approximately $65K in savings on travel expenses. Additionally, the experiences gained in the remote support model paved the way for similar virtual training and go-live activities at Carle moving forward.

After the success of the of the go-live, Dr. Charles Dennis, Chief Medical Officer at Carle shared his thoughts with the Carle organization: “I’ve been involved with many EHR go-lives and the plans and efforts that were developed for the Carle Regional Memorial Hospital (CRMH) go-live to maintain full support during the COVID-19 pandemic was extremely impressive and will strengthen our Carle system during these challenging times.”

Joe Clemons, Pivot Point Consulting’s Director ERP Practice and Advisory who is serving as a consultant project/engagement manager for Carle shared that “strong engagement management, close collaboration, and partnership with the client was critical to the high stakes, successful go-live at Carle given the rapidly evolving environment.”

Pivot Point Consulting continues to invest in the quality it’s known for as #1 Best in KLAS 2020: Overall IT Services Firm by expanding its engagement management team to include another experienced EHR implementation specialist, Joe Studer. Studer brings deep experience after leading many full life-cycle, complex, EHR implementations at prominent institutions such as Community Medical Centers in Fresno, Loma Linda Medical Center and Mayo Clinic.

To hear how the team completed a successful virtual Epic EHR go-live and realized cost savings and virtual efficiencies too, check out this podcast.

About Carle
Carle combines clinical care, health insurance, research and academics in a way that solves real-world problems today. Supported by a deep philanthropic spirit with an eye toward the future, we’re dedicated to doing what it takes to make life better for as many as possible.

Our mission is to serve people through high-quality care, medical research and education. Based in Urbana, Ill., The Carle Foundation is a vertically integrated health system with more than 7,000 employees in its hospitals, physician group, health plan and associated healthcare businesses including the Carle Illinois College of Medicine, the world’s first engineering-based college medicine.


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