The US's world-leading healthcare system Mayo Clinic is just days away from rolling out Epic's EHR at its Minnesota headquarters, a significant development within a five-year and estimated US$1.5 billion effort.

Ranked number one in the US in the US News & World Report rankings of top hospitals, Mayo Clinic employs more than 3,300 physicians, scientists and researchers across its vast network, making the May 5 go-live a mammoth milestone in an enterprise implementation that began when Mayo Clinic and Epic started collaborating in 2013.

In 2015, Mayo Clinic CIO Christopher Ross said the organisation would move from Cerner and GE to a single Epic electronic health record. It has since implemented Epic at several sites in Wisconsin, with the headquarters roll-out a major milestone and final sites in Arizona and Florida slated to follow in October 2018.

As is the case with multi-billion dollar software projects, the arrangement between Mayo Clinic and Epic includes several nuances about data centres, public-facing educational products and apps as well as integrating technologies.

Read more on the development of this massive project:

July 13, 2017

Mayo Clinic hit a landmark in its Epic implementation when 24 of its sites in Wisconsin went live on July 8, 2017, and the healthcare group said campuses in Minnesota were scheduled to do the same in November 2017. It dubbed the massive initiative the "Plummer Project" in honour of Dr Henry Plummer, who had created the world's first patient-centred health record more than a century earlier at Mayo Clinic.

September 18, 2017

Mayo and Epic integrated Mayo's symptom checker functionality into Epic's MyChart portal. The symptom checker tool uses algorithms to help caregivers and patients learn more about common ailments including anxiety, dizziness and swelling. In certain cases, users can also learn about self-care options.

April 26, 2017

In an effort to give patients access to more information about symptoms, conditions and healthy living, Epic added Mayo Clinic's educational health information to patient-facing apps. "Making Mayo Clinic's health knowledge available within MyChart and MyChart Bedside can help patients understand and better manage their health and well-being," Epic President Carl Dvorak said.

January 6, 2016

The hospital-tech vendor relationship took an interesting twist when Epic paid $46 million to buy Mayo Clinic's data centre so it could turn around and lease the facility and technologies back to Mayo - a move that CIO Ross described as "an important foundation" on which Mayo would continue innovating, both within and outside the EHR.

February 2, 2015

Ross said the health system had been steadily working to converge its practices for many years, including operations in Arizona, Florida and the Midwest, and in the spring of 2013 it took a very serious look at the technological infrastructure it needed to advance knowledge sharing inside and outside Mayo. "We have a lot of activity in that space. The EHR is not central to that mission, but it is strongly supporting our long-term goals to do that," Ross said, adding that "this technology commitment is very longstanding."

A version of this story originally appeared on the US edition of Healthcare IT News.




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