Team Targets Critical Access Hospitals

Columbia Basin Hospital, a critical access hospital in Ephrata, Wash., will implement electronic health records software and has outsourced management of its information technology operations.

The hospital is the first customer resulting from a partnership of bundled services by consulting firm Phoenix Health Systems of Dallas, and hospital EHR vendor Medsphere Systems Corp., Carlsbad, Calif. Phoenix Health has licensed the OpenVista EHR of Medsphere, and will market the software, implementation and outsource services to small rural hospitals of under 100 beds, particularly critical access hospitals. Under the license and partnership, Medsphere's periodic upgrades of OpenVista will be available to Phoenix Health's clients at no additional cost.

Columbia Basin Hospital has 25 acute care, 29 long-term care and 32 assisted living beds. Its delivery system includes an emergency department, family medicine clinic, rehabilitation center, diagnostic laboratory and telehealth services. The hospital has outsourced all I.T. operations to Phoenix Health, which includes a Phoenix-supplied CIO.

The consultancy's bundled services package, called Total IT Solutions, made implementing an EHR possible both financially and operationally, says Robert Reeder, CEO at Columbia Basin Hospital.