2021-09-15

All User Bulletin - Patient Portal Access Update

All-user-bulletins highlight considerations that all prescribers need to be aware of when using the Connect Care clinical information system.

Patient Portals Access Constraints

We previously reported access problems affecting the MyAHS Connect patient portal. Patients faced delays or, in some cases, were not able to log in. 

The Alberta Health MyHealth Records (MHR) patient portal is experiencing an increased number of Albertans trying to access their immunization records. As a result, many Albertans trying to log in to MyHealth Records are experiencing long queue lines. 

The Alberta Health Services MyAHS Connect (MAC) Connect Care patient portal uses the same authentication portal as MHR. Consequently, patients also face delays or loss of access to MAC. The MAC mobile apps (SmartPhones and Apple Watches) are likewise affected. To be clear, Connect Care Hyperspace is not impacted and the MAC servers are functioning normally.  

It is uncertain how long it will be before this issue is resolved. We will keep you updated about access to MyAHS Connect as more information becomes available.  

At present, patients will experience longer wait times, and possibly other challenges, when trying to connect to MAC via computer or mobile devices. This can affect scheduling, information access, communications with providers and embedded telehealth services.

BBHR: Bloat Busters - Using Interval H&P Notes

Building a Better Health Record (BBHR)
Bloat Busters - Using Interval H&P Notes

"Note bloat" is a digital health record affliction that decreases the signal-to-noise ratio of clinical documentation and frustrates clinical decision-makers. 

As part of our documentation quality improvement initiative, we will share practical ways for clinicians to benefit from Connect Care documentation norms that promote succinct, clear and actionable charting.

A common "bloater" is unnecessarily duplication of clinical documents. A patient may be seen by a consultation service in the emergency department, where a consult note is completed and a decision is made to admit to an inpatient facility. The consult may have anticipated admission and included all information that might otherwise be placed in an admitting history and physical (H&P). 

Given the requirement that all inpatient encounters have an admitting H&P, the admitting service may be tempted to copy the consult into a separate H&P, or to place a comment in the H&P referencing the consult. However, both the Consult Note and the H&P are shared with external systems (e.g., Alberta Netcare) and so extend unhelpful duplication beyond Connect Care.

There is a workflow to avoid this! An "Interval H&P" note can be created to point to the source document (e.g., Consult Note), avoid copy-paste and also avoid duplicate shares with external systems.

2021-09-14

All User Bulletin - Patient Portal Access Down

All-user-bulletins highlight stumbling blocks that all prescribers need to be aware of when using the Connect Care clinical information system.

Patient Portals Access Down

Access to MyHealth Records started slowing mid-day September 14, likely related to public demand for vaccination information. By mid-afternoon, access stopped. 

Access to MyAHS Connect (Connect Care patient portal) has been bound to the same MyAlberta Digital Identity sign-on used by MyHealth Records. Consequently, MyAHS Connect access is also affected.

We will update this notice when information about service restoration becomes available.

Netcare Scheduled Outage - Thursday September 16, 2021, 21:00-03:00 Friday September 17, 2021

Alberta Netcare Portal will be unavailable between September 16, 2021 21:00 and 03:00 September 17, 2021, to accommodate system upgrades. Connect Care will not be able to launch Netcare during this time. 

Users who are logged in during this time will be disconnected and will need to re-authenticate following the outage period. 

If urgent access to results is anticipated during these periods, please refer to and complete the ANP Downtime Contingency Kit in advance of the maintenance. 

For any questions or concerns, AHS employees please contact 1-877-311-4300, while Community Alberta Netcare users (outside AHS) can contact the Provincial Helpdesk at 1-877-931-1638.

2021-09-10

On Other Channels...

Thank you for continuing to check (...ideally, subscribe to multiple channels; see instructions) the Connect Care update blog for prescribers. Recent additions to this blog and its various channels:

2021-09-05

Connect Care Transfusion Information System Scheduled Downtimes in Early September

The WellSky transfusion management software interacts with the Connect Care clinical information system to support blood product administration workflows. Users are asked to hold blood product ordering and testing activities, if possible, during the following times when the WellSky transfusion management system will be offline:

  • Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 23:30 until Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 00:30 (for pre-upgrade work).
  • Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 21:00 until Thursday, September 9, 2021 at 04:30.

Clinically essential transfusion medicine orders can still be made using established blood product downtime procedures. For any questions or clarification needed, please call the local facility laboratory.

All other components of Connect Care remain functional during the transfusion system upgrade.

2021-09-03

COVID-19 and Connect Care - Waves 4-5 Delay

An important message from Dr. Francois Belanger, Chief Medical Officer, and Sean Chilton, Vice President Health Professions and Practice and Information Technology:


Our healthcare teams and patients come first in every decision we make. Given the significantly increasing demands on acute and critical care areas, frontline staff, physicians, programs and services, and the increased health risks our patient and healthcare teams are facing due to COVID-19, we do not feel it would be prudent to launch the next wave of Connect Care in November 2021.

Our immediate priority is to support Alberta’s on-going COVID-19 response. We know that each Connect Care launch requires significant training and preparation by frontline teams, those who support behind the scenes and leadership. Delaying our Connect Care launches helps ensure our staff, physicians and leaders are able to focus on delivering care to patients who need acute and critical care at this time. 

We are currently assessing the situation in order to determine our new wave rollout plan. Firm dates for subsequent launches will be shared as we have them.

To be very clear, Connect Care is not being cancelled: Connect Care continues to be one of our highest organizational priorities. In fact, even with this delay to the upcoming launches, some Connect Care work will still continue to support the needs of the organization, the pandemic, and to prepare for the next launches. Work that can still continue because it is less impacted by COVID-19 includes:
  • Infrastructure and technology work, including WIFI upgrades, facility preparations, and device deployment and testing
  • Continued support for Waves 1, 2 and 3 to aid the stabilization of those sites and programs
  • Building and validation work for Waves 4-7
  • Building and preparing training support, leadership teams and other roles necessary for future launches. 
We are thankful for all the work done to launch our three previous waves so successfully, including the incredible support from the Edmonton and North zones, and from sites and programs across the province. We also want to recognize the preparations undertaken for our next launches by Connect Care teams, site and program teams and our leadership. 

When it is safe and prudent to move ahead with our future launches, we will be ready. In the meantime, making these changes means we can be strategic with resources and respectful of the demands on our staff and physicians, as they continue to protect the people of this province.  

2021-09-02

COVID-19 and Connect Care - Additional Dose and Moderna Changes

As of September 1, 2021, an additional (third or booster) dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is available for eligible groups:

  • immunocompromised individuals 12 years of age and older with specific conditions, 8 weeks after their second dose; 
  • residents of seniors’ supportive living facilities, 5 months after their second dose; and 
  • travelers to jurisdictions where AstraZeneca/Covishield or mixed doses are not recognized, 4 weeks after their second dose.
Also as of September 1, 2021, the Moderna (COVMODmRNA) vaccination has been approved for ages 12 years and older.

To support the expanded criteria for vaccinations, the COVID-19 vaccine inpatient order set is enhanced in Connect Care:

  • An "Additional Dose" section has been added to the order set to support those eligible for additional doses (as described above).
  • Moderna (COVMODmRNA) is now available for everyone born 2009 and earlier.

For more information: