The students visited Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital for a tour and a chance to interview hospital staff. Two groups of students wrote stories, and Darius Smith took photos.
By AmberLynn Anderson, Shaniqua Anderson and Victoria Liu
A woman lies on her kitchen floor, struggling to reach the telephone. When she calls 911, an Emergency Medical Service team is sent to her house, and treatment immediately begins before she even reaches the hospital.
This image of quick, effective care is the vision that Tammy Kemp, a director at the hospital, sees for Carilion Clinic’s future in the Roanoke Valley thanks to novel technology.
In 2006, Carillon began to implement what is called electronic medical records, or EMR. The hospital contracted with the Wisconsin-based medical software company Epic, which installed the multi-million dollar system 18 months later.
It is an electronic database for patient history and documentation that will phase out the use of paper records; it also allows different departments to “talk to each other,” Kemp said.
With EMR, employees can access information anywhere, which allows treatment to be more efficient.
“It’s a lot more hours in a day,” said Kemp. “It helps by making communication easier.”