Partners HealthCare today announced that is making an historic commitment to, and investment in a health information technology infrastructure of the future. The announcement reflects a dedicated vision, and a broadened scope for Partners clinical information systems. This strategic direction will allow for better coordinated patient care as Partners moves into a new health care environment that will include Accountable Care Organizations, new payment models and a focus on population health management. 

“Together, we will shape an information system that works for the thousands of patients who depend on us for their care,” said Partners President and CEO Gary Gottlieb, MD. “This vision for health care information technology will ensure that Partners is well positioned to provide the type of high quality, coordinated and efficient care that is best for our patients and our families.”

For several months, Partners has been laying the groundwork for a new clinical information system that when completed will assist all Partners doctors, nurses, and other health professionals in the coordination of patient care and greatly enhance the ability to measure, report on, and improve efficiency. The system will also support and enhance efforts in the area of research and medical education.

Over the next several months, Partners will negotiate exclusively with EPIC, a worldwide leader in health information technology, specializing in work with large academic medical centers and integrated health systems. System development and implementation will occur over a 10-year period and represent a capital investment of approximately $600 - 700 million. 

Together, Partners and Epic will put into place a world-class system that will:

  • Provide a single patient record -- clinical information will follow patients everywhere within Partners.
  • Improve coordination, reduce duplication of care, avoid unnecessary tests, and greatly improve convenience of care for both clinicians and patients.
  • Collect, manage, analyze, and report clinical data across the Partners HealthCare System.
  • Offer a patient’s clinician access to information -- 24/7 -- at the click of a mouse.
  • Give patients easy electronic access to their own data, enhancing the ability to communicate with clinicians and engage them to take a more active role in their own care.
  • Offer enhanced research, education, finance, revenue and billing capability.

“The time is now. The health care world is changing rapidly,” said Partners Chief Health Information and Innovation Officer David Blumenthal, MD. “The new health care landscape will challenge us to engage in population health management, improve the coordination of health care, and accept financial risk for the care of our patients. This new system will enable us to meet those challenges.”