After touring nurses give up, hospital blames lack of EHR familiarity

[This article has been updated with further comment from Providence St. Joseph Hospital representatives.]

4 out of six touring intensive care unit nurses give up simply in the future after arriving at Windfall St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka, California, this previous week.  

The rationale, in response to hospital officers quoted in native outlet the Occasions-Commonplace, involved a scarcity of familiarity with the hospital’s digital well being document.  

“The first cause was that they weren’t accustomed to our digital medical document system – a system that’s utilized by many hospitals,” stated Dr. Roberta Luskin-Hawk, chief government for Windfall in Humboldt County.   

“Windfall St Joseph Hospital at the moment has Meditech because the digital well being document and can be transitioning to Epic later this month,” defined Luskin-Hawk in an e-mail to Healthcare IT Information after publication.

“The state of California [Medical Health Operational Area Coordination] system has been supporting the pandemic response by allocating staffing assets to hospitals who’re being closely impacted by the pandemic, whose ordinary momentary staffing companies are unable to supply the wanted personnel. This necessitates the usage of new companies and on this case, the RNs despatched to Eureka didn’t have expertise with Meditech,” she continued.

“Schooling was shortly developed,” she added. “The scenario displays the quickly altering deployment of healthcare employees from all sources to reply to the COVID-19 pandemic.”


Windfall St. Joseph had initially introduced in six touring ICU nurses and two respiratory therapists final week amidst the continuing useful resource pressure of COVID-19.   

As of Wednesday, there have been solely seven obtainable ICU beds in Humboldt County; 10 had been occupied by COVID-19 sufferers.   

However 4 of these ICU nurses give up the day after they got here onboard, stated Occasions-Commonplace reporter Isabella Vanderheiden.  

A California Nurses Affiliation spokesperson informed Vanderheiden the nurses weren’t given ample assets, “together with entry to the unit’s digital charting system, and had been instantly handed full affected person assignments with little in the best way of orientation. So, 4 out of the six give up.”   

“Within the phrases of one among them, the vacationers had been ‘thrown to the wolves,’ and with all of the alternatives obtainable to vacationers today, they simply didn’t come again,” stated the spokesperson, Ian Seldon.  


Clinician morale has taken a serious hit below COVID-19, with caregivers reporting elevated emotions of burnout within the second 12 months of a devastating pandemic.  

Healthcare workers say expertise can usually assist – however it could possibly additionally make issues worse.  

EHR usability is a big issue.   

“When the EHR and different techniques require so many containers to be checked and screens to be confirmed, it could possibly undermine our time and deal with affected person care,” Sophia L. Thomas, president of the American Affiliation of Nurse Practitioners, informed Healthcare IT Information this previous 12 months.


“Along with assembly the speedy wants of our communities, we’re excited to be transitioning to a extra broadly used digital medical document system within the coming weeks and can proceed to work on further initiatives that may improve our well being care supply system over the close to time period and for years to come back,” stated Windfall’s Luskin-Hawk.

Kat Jercich is senior editor of Healthcare IT Information.

Twitter: @kjercich


Healthcare IT Information is a HIMSS Media publication.

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