Connect Care Waves 2-3 120 Day Launch Readiness Assessment

Among many preparations for the next Connect Care launches are Launch Readiness Assessments (LRA). These bring stakeholders together to assess progress and mitigate impediments.

Launch waves 2 and 3 occur May 2020, with tomorrow the 120 day LRA. Wave readiness representatives meet (Skype invites sent) to share information and contribute suggestions.

For more information:


This week in Optimization - Referral & Consultation

Connect Care physician training occurs in three phases:
  1. Basic training covers essential skills for logging on, navigating Hyperspace and using common functions safely. 
  2. Personalization training teaches how to adapt the CIS environment for a more satisfying experience. 
  3. Optimization training explores workflow improvement for productivity. 
While personalization has the biggest impact on efficiency and satisfaction, optimization training can troubleshoot complex workflows that challenge many physicians. Workgroups have helped to define difficulties, suggest clinical information system optimizations and identify opportunities for end-user skill enhancement. 

Wave 1 post-launch optimization training progresses through weekly themes; with Manual, Tip, Demo and Clinic interventions keyed to each theme. 

This week's optimization theme is about Referral and Consultation workflows. While Connect Care offers prospect for seamless closed loop referral, we remain in an interim state with some services using Connect Care as the record of care and others still reliant on fax, eReferral or other intake processes. 

This week's optimization clinics (Wednesday Jan 15 at 0800 and 1200) explore the difference between internal and external outpatient referrals. New or improved supports appear in physician resources throughout the week:


Practical Paranoia - PLEASE don't trust links in e-mails!

Cyber-threats just keep getting worse!

Last week Saskatchewan health was hit by disruptive malware that proved very expensive to recover from. Alberta Health Services, like all big organizations, fends off thousands of attacks daily.

The hackers' windfall remains the unwary insider with access to protected networks and temptation to click on links in emails. We've managed to contain a few more of these lately, but affected users face extended downtimes and work is lost when damaged files are replaced by older copies.

Please re-skim our many warnings about 'phishing', brush up on phishing-prevention, and be paranoid about anything inviting your click.


Connect Care Wave Adjustments - Who's when?

We've previously posted about adjustments to the sequencing and membership of the remaining Connect Care launch waves. While Waves 2 and 3 continue to work to a May 2020 launch date, the involved sites were modified as a result of some learnings and tough choices required at the end of 2019, as previously posted.

Wave sequencing work continues, as new dependencies or needs emerge. The best way to review current plans is through a regularly updated online resource (note the need to select a wave of interest in order to view affected locations and clinical groups) :


Wave 1 Post Launch Visits

The Connect Care initiative remains committed to meaningful user support through stabilization, optimization and remediation. Delivering on this commitment requires ongoing direct observation as part of systematic surveillance. Post Launch Visits (PLV) are one form of direct observation.

The first PLVs occured this week, touching over 2000 participants through over 230 hours of meetings, observations and evaluations. The work has been remarkably informative. Key issues are identified, summarized, prioritized and escalated for attention.

Some physician highlights from today's PLV debrief:
  • Need for more training and change-management support for optimal use of CIS navigators to support efficient workflows.
  • Complex transitions (ER <--> OR <--> ICU <--> IP <--> OP) and order management (save, pend, phase of care) require continued work to streamline, simplify and achieve consistent compliance.
  • Time to hyperspace access remains a challenge in high-volume ambulatory settings, needing further remediation for faster access (touch-n-go, thin-client, etc.).
  • Timely laboratory result routing remains a multi-factorial challenge and will continue to receive attention to provider IDs and other correctives.
  • Need for continuing training support to help users understand build released since basic training and workflow hot-spots identified post-launch. 
  • Condense ordersets to show only what is essential and so facilitate faster navigation.
Plans and (near-term) dates are set for addressing these and other issues.


Connect Care Optimization Clinic #4 - Referral Orders

Optimization clinics are delivered by peers, usually a clinician informatician or super user, with focus on challenging use cases. A short presentation is followed by questions, discussion and suggestions from participants. Any new tips are posted to the Physician Manual or Physician Updates.

A fourth Connect Care Optimization Clinic is offered at two times of day (duplicate clinics) to fit clinical schedules. All are welcome. Please try the meeting link ahead of time to ensure that your computer is ready before the session.
  • Topic: Consultation & Referral Orders
  • Facilitator: Stuart Rosser
  • Date: Wednesday, January 15, 2020
  • Time #1: 0700-0800
  • Time #2: 1200-1300
  • Description:
    • Inpatient consultation and outpatient clinic referrals have been slow to stabilize after wave 1 launch. A workgroup has considered the issues and produced helpful guidance about optimizing consultation and referral orders. Best practices will be demonstrated.
    • Referral reception processes will be outlined so that referring prescribers can improve their ordering practices for different specialty services.


With gratitude!

As we return from a short respite, Connect Care reasserts its demands. It may help to draw strength from many astounding accomplishments that will stabilize and spread in the coming year.

Clinical Content - relates to the inquiry, decision and documentation supports designed, built and implemented with Area Council oversight to facilitate effective and efficient workflows:
  • Inpatient decision supports are customized to the needs of different clinical areas with best-practice aids that include 600+ order panels, 310+ order sets, 350+ cancer protocols, 100+ best practice advisories and 600+ ambulatory aids (SmartSets, therapy plans, order panels, order preferences).
  • An innovative StoryBoard reflects specialty needs while adhering to standards for alerts, demographics, care teams and other patient information summarized the same way across the continuum of care.
  • Dashboards (100+), chronic disease registries (5), clinical performance metrics, predictive analytics models and reporting templates are among the many clinical inquiry supports (2000+) activated at launch, with ongoing clinical validation.
  • Active clinical research protocols at launch sites (350+) are supported by Connect Care research information management tools.
  • Progress notes, consult letters, discharge summaries, admission histories, emergency visit reports and other key clinical documentation for inpatient and outpatient sites have consistent formatting and are delivered to community electronic medical records and the Netcare electronic health record.
  • Flowsheets, functional status questionnaires and patient preference surveys are simplified, standardized and integrated to inform patient-centred care, including direct patient interaction through the MyAHS Connect portal. 
  • Provincially normalized catalogues for laboratory tests, medications, procedures, imaging and other interventions are implemented for provincial spread.
Prescriber Adoption - relates to the leadership, engagement, training, personalization and optimization capacity built in physician and trainee user communities:
  • Hundreds of clinical informaticians, including medical informatics leads, power users, super users and physician builders were readied pre-launch and played a definitive role in wave 1 launch success.
  • 3,250+ prescribers (physicians, residents, nurse practitioners, etc.) were trained for Connect Care launch, then supported through stabilization.
  • 2,250+ physician mobile devices were configured for Connect Care mobility, with rapid update of smartphone and tablet interfaces to the point that 1 in 5 logons are via mobile devices.
  • In-system dictation for clinical documentation (Dragon Medical One) enjoyed viral uptake, rapidly overtaking use of provincial transcription services (in a ratio of 25:1).
There are many more accomplishments to celebrate. Most important are the 2020 opportunities made possible by the foothold Connect Care gained in 2019. We will ensure that no-one has been left behind, that users regain and surpass past productivity, and that the Connect Care experience promotes excellence.


Connect Care Mobility Update Today

Connect Care Mobility supports prescriber interaction with the clinical information system (CIS) using smartphones (Haiku) and iPads (Canto) inside and outside AHS networks. Alberta Health Services (AHS) provides mobility management software ("Hub") to keep the CIS mobile apps updated and appropriately configured for Connect Care.

Mobile Apps have proved a quick win for clinicians. Uptake at Wave 1 launch was rapid and usage continues to rise. Nonetheless, some minor problems have been reported, most fixed in an update ready to deploy.

The Hub application will be updated today (January 6, 2020) at 1030.

Mobility users may receive a prompt to accept the update. Please do this to refresh with the currently supported version of Connect Care mobility management.


Connect Care Optimization Clinic #3 - Lists, Rounds and Handoffs

Optimization clinics are delivered by peers, usually a clinician informatician or super user, with focus on challenging use cases. A short presentation is followed by questions, discussion and suggestions from participants. Any new tips are posted to the Physician Manual or Physician Updates.

A third Connect Care Optimization Clinic is offered a two times of day (duplicate clinics) to fit different clinical schedules. All are welcome. Please try the meeting link ahead of time to ensure that your computer is ready before the session.
  • Topic: Patient Lists, Rounds & Handoffs
  • Facilitator: Rob Hayward
  • Date: January 8, 2020
  • Time #1: 0700-0800
    • Meeting Link: clinic-a.connect-care.ca
    • Meeting ID: 258 320 762
    • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone 
      • Canada +1 647 558 0588 (then meeting ID)
      • One click: +16475580588,,258320762
  • Time #2: 1200-1300
    • Meeting Link: clinic-b.connect-care.ca
    • Meeting ID: 930 576 272
    • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone 
      • Canada +1 647 558 0588 (then meeting ID)
      • One click: +16475580588,,930576272
  • Description:
    • The Patient Lists toolkit provides clinicians with powerful tools to facilitate better team management, consult tracking, multidisciplinary rounds, ward rounds and end-of-shift handovers.
    • We will remind about how custom Patient Lists can be created, edited and shared; using illustrative examples to show how specialty notes, handoff report fields and other elements can be used to fit lists to different clinical needs.


Connect Care Physician Supports during Holiday Period

Escalations of physician help requests have become relatively rare, which is reassuring as we enter the winter holiday season and reduced support staffing.

The CMIO portfolio has organized to ensure that clinical informatics and medical informatics resources are available on-call over this time. User support methods remain the same (see the Support section of the Connect Care Physician Manual) with the CMIO resources available if Help Desk is not able to resolve a problem.


Connect Care Wave Adjustments

With the launch of Connect Care’s Wave 1 in November almost behind us, we are now looking ahead to the next launches, occurring in waves over the next few years.

Following extensive discussion, senior leaders have adjusted the timing and scope of Connect Care’s Waves 2 and 3, and modified the scope of Waves 4 and 5. Wave 1 launched in November 2019 successfully and we want to align upcoming launch plans with lessons learned.

Patient care and safety, along with the needs of staff and physicians, is at the forefront of all of planning decisions, including this one. While mindful of healthcare funding constraints, the Connect Care initiative continues to be fully resourced to achieve its original completion targets. This includes working to resolve outstanding issues and challenges. We want to optimize timing so that staff and physicians within future waves are ready and supported at their launch dates.

Here is a summary of the modified Connect Care wave sequencing and timing:
  • Waves 2 and 3 (launching in May 2020) will include Calgary Zone rural and urgent care sites and the clinics and services aligned with those, and Edmonton Zone suburban sites. 
    • All of the Central Zone rollout, initially planned for Wave 2, will be moved to Wave 4. 
  • Waves 4 and 5 have scope and timelines recalibrated to ensure they are not too compressed by the delay of Central Zone’s rollout. The wave implementation schedule remains the same.  
    • Wave 4 (launching November 2020) will include the Royal Alexandra and Glenrose Hospitals in Edmonton Zone, all of Central Zone and Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary Zone.
    • Wave 5 (launching May 2021) includes Peace Country and Grande Prairie hospitals) in North Zone, the Foothills Medical Centre and South Health Campus hospitals in Calgary Zone, cancer programs in the north and south, and the coinciding rural labs.
  • The scope and sequencing of Waves 6, 7, 8 and 9 are being reviewed and details about any changes or updates to those waves will be available in the coming weeks. 
  • The timing for the rollout of Connect Care within Kidney Care North and South is still being determined.   
  • Wave 1 launched in November, 2019 and included the University, Mazankowski and Stollery hosptials, outpatient clinics across Edmonton Zone, the East Edmonton Health Centre, Pharmacy and Diagnostic Imaging sites in the Edmonton Zone, Alberta Public Labs sites in Edmonton and the North Zone, DynaLIFE sites across Alberta and the lab at the Cross Cancer Institute.
For more details about these changes, please refer to the updated Implementation Timeline.

The current plan reflects the best information available today.  We may need to make future adjustments as we continue to learn from, and adapt to, each Connect Care launch. We’ll also continue to be responsive to the needs of patients, families, staff and physicians.


Reminder: Tricky Transitions Tomorrow (optimization clinic)

Complex patient movements can affect how Connect Care orders are placed, when they are activated and how they are approved for action. The second Connect Care Optimization Clinic will seek input from participants about the types of "patient movement" challenges they may have experienced with orders. We will share a flow diagram highlighting key "tricky transitions" and the orders choices that can navigate them successfully.
We continue to experiment with webinar technologies that can serve prescribers joining virtual clinics from inside and outside AHS networks and using different personal computing configurations. Tomorrow, "Zoom" will be the platform in use. Please use the links provided below to try connecting well ahead of time. This will allow for any downloads or other adjustments needed to participate.
Note that there are two (duplicate) sessions. The morning session may better suit surgeon schedules.
Session #1 - December 18, 2019, 0700-0800
  • Meeting ID: 843 908 198
  • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone (647 558 0588 then meeting ID or one-click +16475580588,,843908198)
Session #2 - December 18, 2019, 1200-1300
  • Meeting ID: 359 904 795
  • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone (647 558 0588 then meeting ID or one-click +16475580588,,359904795


Pharmacy Information Network Connect Care Interface Update

We previously posted about early efforts to interface Alberta's Pharmacy Information Network (PIN) with Connect Care medication reconciliation workflows, including an "outside information" function for PIN medication reconciliation.

This did not work as well as hoped. The function was removed so that PIN reconciliation reminders would not interfere with workflows. Of safety concern, the laborious task of importing medications from PIN did not benefit from clinical decision supports.

Connect Care users may not appreciate that it remains possible to review PIN dispensing information, even though one is no longer prompted to reconcile "outside" PIN medications. A full PIN list remains available in Netcare. This can be displayed in-context and allows a full history of (eligible) medication dispenses to be reviewed.

Some confusion may relate to orphan PIN medication reconciliation flags "left over" from the early Connect Care launch period. These should not be relied upon. No updates have occurred since early November. It is wise, and easy, to remove these flags:


New Inpatient Consults: Spiritual Care, Indigenous Health

Inpatient referrals to spiritual care and indigenous health services are now supported in Connect Care. Search for "Inpatient Consult to Spiritual Care" or "Inpatient Consult to Indigenous Health" to complete a request, entering contextual information in the usual fashion.

Connect Care Optimization Clinic #2 - Tricky Transitions

Optimization clinics are delivered by peers, usually a clinician informatician or super user, with focus on challenging use cases. A short presentation is followed by questions, discussion and suggestions from participants. Any new tips are posted to the Physician Manual or Physician Updates.

A second Connect Care Optimization Clinic is offered a two times of day (duplicate clinics) to better fit physician schedules. All are welcome. Please try the meeting link ahead of time to ensure that your computer is ready before the session.
  • Topic: Tricky Transitions
  • Facilitators: Rob Hayward, Alan Sobey
  • Date: December 18, 2019
  • Time #1: 0700-0800
    • Meeting Link: clinic-a.connect-care.ca
    • Meeting ID: 843 908 198
    • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone 
      • Canada +1 647 558 0588 (then meeting ID)
      • One click: +16475580588,,843908198
  • Time #2: 1200-1300
    • Meeting Link: clinic-b.connect-care.ca
    • Meeting ID: 359 904 795
    • Audio: can use computer audio or telephone 
      • Canada +1 647 558 0588 (then meeting ID)
      • One click: +16475580588,,359904795
  • Description:
    • Complex patient movements can affect how Connect Care orders are placed, when they are activated and how they are approved. Our focus will be on the sorts of problems that may arise when patients transition to settings or phases along a care pathway. 
    • We’ll demonstrate and discuss how Connect Care physicians can take corrective action, with a focus on Orders clean-up.


Connect Care System Update - December 12, 2019

A scheduled downtime in the early hours of December 12, 2019 allows Connect Care production servers to be updated with a number of enhancements.

Mostly, these relate to change-needs arising from our early post-launch experience. Some updates reflect our commitment to keep Connect Care current with Epic's latest enhancements. For example, improvements will be noticed by physicians using the Android version of Haiku.

The downtime window will also be used for updates and fixes to Dragon Medical One, including correction of microphone persistence and voice command issues.

A complete list of changes, keyed to Epic modules, includes notes about what users may notice:

Downtime Resources for Physicians

Connect Care has its first scheduled downtime overnight (early hours of Thursday Dec 12, 2019 sometime between 0030-0430).

Straightforward instructions for physicians (which complement the more detailed Connect Care Downtime Resources at ahs-cis.ca/downtime) have been updated and streamlined:


All-User Bulletin: Connect Care Service Interruption

All-user-bulletins highlight stumbling blocks, and solutions, that all physicians need to be aware of when starting to use the Connect Care clinical information system.

Service Interruption Dec 10, 10:10 - what to do
While preparing for a system update Thursday morning (see post), the Internet servers that support Connect Care Hyperspace were being prepared and a few encountered a brief outage.

This affected some Hyperspace users who may have noticed error messages or loss of access to patient charts. Although the unplanned, unscheduled, interruption lasted only minutes, some workstation sessions may remain ineffective. The solution is to simply re-boot the workstation.

Mobility remained active during this time, a reminder that Canto, Haiku and Rover are alternate ways to get into a chart.

The incident has been analyzed and this kind of server adjustment will not be attempted again in this way.


Connect Care Scheduled Downtime

The Connect Care production environment (PRD) needs periodic maintenance. This allows system fixes to be installed without risking database content and also gives opportunity to install quarterly software updates.

The first scheduled update will occur Thursday December 12, 2019, sometime between 0030-0430 in the early morning hours. While access to PRD is taken offline, access to "PRDSRO" remains. This is a read-only copy of the most recent production (PRD) and allows all patient data to be reviewed. Any urgent orders or documentation that must be completed while PRD is offline can be handled through a combination of paper, eScription and Netcare activities. Try to postpone and avoid use of paper, as PRD is likely to be restored quickly.

Any paper ordering or charting will be uploaded by support staff once the downtime finishes. Physicians will want to validate this work. Charting deficiency notifications may appear later in In-Basket but can be addressed with the smartphrase ".DOWNTIME".

Additional instruction remains available in the Connect Care Physician Manual:


All Physician Bulletin - In-System Dictation Downtime

All-physician-bulletins highlight stumbling blocks, and solutions, that all physicians need to be aware of when starting to use the Connect Care clinical information system.

Dragon Medical One brief Downtime Dec 06, 0100-0200...
There is a scheduled Dragon Medical One (DMO) outage set for December 6 sometime between 0100 and 0200 (overnight). The vendor hopes it may be complete in <10 mins.
During this time, physicians will receive an error message if they try to start a new in-system dictation using DMO. Any dictation initiated before the downtime will be saved, but users will not be able to start another dictation session until the upgrade is complete.

Of course all other methods of documentation remain available within Connect Care. Users who strongly prefer DMO can record a few text notes and return later to delete and dictate or supplement and dictate.


One Month of Connect Care

A Message from Dr. Verna Yiu, AHS President and CEO 

Dear staff, physicians and volunteers,

We now have one month officially behind us in our Wave 1 Connect Care journey.  Congratulations to all of our sites and teams across AHS who have provided strong support for our Wave 1 colleagues as they pave the way for Connect Care across the province. For the past 30 days, teams have been working around the clock to provide support and help resolve issues. We are so proud of your collaborative spirit.

As we work together to become more comfortable and confident using Connect Care, we know there will be challenges along the way. Learning new systems and work flows can be difficult, and there have been issues as we figure it out. It is good to remember the long-term goals. 

Connect Care will:
  • House all AHS, partner and affiliate medical records to support care wherever Connect Care is in place.
  • Provide common decision-making tools and resources for clinicians, to ensure all our physicians and staff have access to the same clinical standards and best healthcare practices.
  • Eventually allow all patients across Alberta to have access to their health information through the patient portal, MyAHS Connect.
Ultimately, Connect Care means  the whole healthcare team, including patients, will have the best possible information throughout their care journey. 

Our healthcare providers and supporting teams are at the heart of all we do. We’ve taken some time to talk to several staff, physicians and patients involved in Wave 1 about what this month-long experience has meant to them.

Thank you for such a successful launch. Thank you for your patience and resilience. Because of you, we have accomplished so much in these last 30 days. I also want to thank and encourage those working on the combined Waves 2 and 3. There is much to learn from the first implementation and I appreciate all your efforts to get us ready for the next step.


Dr. Verna Yiu
AHS President and CEO


Recruiting Physician Area Trainers – Waves 2, 3 & 4

Connect Care continues to roll-out with Waves 2 & 3 in May 2020 and Wave 4 in November 2020. It's time to get ready!

There are opportunities for new physician Area Trainers, a role that proved exciting and rewarding to physicians who supported Wave 1. Area Trainers deliver Connect Care training while also promoting transformation and clinical improvement at launch.

previously posted about Physician Area Trainers. Interested clinicians benefit from exceptional clinical information system orientation and change management coaching. Stipend-supported, Area Trainers can use the role to supplement their usual clinical activities, play a pivotal role at Connect Care launch and positively impact health care in Alberta. Area Trainers are critical to the success of Connect Care, and will champion the initiative in their teams.  There will be an opportunity to extend the role for those who wish to continue beyond their assigned launch wave.

For more information:


Ordering for faster Workflows

We previously posted about cleaning Order clutter than can happen with complex inpatient pathways.

Better to prevent the clutter in the first place! Taking a bit of time, early on, to build Order preference lists may be the most important way to improve your efficiency while maintaining well-ordered Orders.

If you are struggling with Orders, chances are you need to take control and tweak them to your liking. Key skills include personalizing multiple versions of the same order based on diagnosis, timeframe and laterality. Examples include:
  • Multiple versions of a medication prescription based on the number days required, or different dosing schedules.
  • Multiple orders specific to x-rays of the left ankle, and the right ankle, left knee and right knee.
  • Multiple versions of interventions based on chief complaint (e.g. CT head to rule out CVA, CT head to rule our hemorrhage etc.)
Any time you have repetitive or similar ordering workflows to complete in Connect Care, there is a good chance they can be automated in some fashion to save you time.


deOrderizing Inpatient Charts

A variety of circumstances can lead to inpatient Order messiness. Complex transfers – to or from emergency, critical care, operating room, dialysis, inpatient and reactivation services – can generate Order litter in the form of duplicate, orphaned (not associated with a phase of care) or inactive Orders not cleared by prescribers on either side of a context shift. This disorder can make it harder to recognize and manage important Orders. It can also bloat summative documents, such as transfer reports.

Periodic “deOrderizing” should be done to find and remove inappropriate, unnecessary or misleading strays. Prescribers may be asked to do this by other health care team members who struggle to manage patients’ Orders. Today's Connect Care Optimization Clinic focused on this topic, supported by new aids for users:


Connect Care Optimization Clinic #1 - Orders Hygiene

The third phase of Connect Care training for physicians is called "Optimization", not to be confused with ongoing optimization of clinical content (documentation, decision and inquiry supports).

Among the many optimization options available to Connect Care physicians are a series of Optimization Clinics. These informal sessions are entirely voluntary and virtual, with no need to register, go somewhere, or work through MyLearningLink. There are no reading materials, eLearnings or other expectations.

Optimization clinics are delivered by peers, usually a clinician informatician or super user. But anyone can volunteer to facilitate a clinic.

Each clinic focuses on one or more challenging use or workflow(s). A short presentation of a proposed optimized practice is followed by questions, discussion and suggestions from participants. Any new key messages get posted to the Physician Manual or Physician Updates.

A first (pilot) optimization clinic occurs Wednesday November 27 at noon:
  • Topic: Orders Hygiene
  • Facilitator: Rob Hayward 
  • Time: November 27, 2019, 1200-1300
  • Audio: 780-801-2629, conference code 7070706
  • Video: clinic.connect-care.ca (please test and join between 1130-1200)


New Global Search for Connect Care Update Blogs

The Connect Care Physician Updates blogs include multiple "channels". These are listed across the top in a button bar (computers) or pick-list (mobile devices) and include:
  • Bytes - general interest updates
  • Bridges - posts of interest to those not using Connect Care as their record of care
  • Vlogs - short video blogs on general introductory topics
  • Informatics - more detailed or technical postings of interest to physician informaticians
  • Tips - brief explanations, demonstrations and practical pointers
  • FAQ - frequently asked questions about Connect Care functions
  • Support - common problems and solutions for Connect Care users
It has been possible to search for posts with title or text containing a term, or to search for posts tagged as belonging to a particular category (left column of all blog channels). 

As the volume and value of postings has grown, our followers have requested a way to search multiple channels at once. We now have a rudimentary tool that does this.

Check out the new "Search" link in the button bar above or the "See Also" links to the right.


Chat with Care

Connect Care Secure Chat offers an approved way for users to share quick messages about their work. All other messaging services (e.g., iMessage, WhatsApp) must be avoided when identifiable health information is at risk.

While Chat can facilitate quick communication and collaboration, it does not replace usual communication for urgent matters, or In Basket for communications that belong in the record of care.

Prescribers should use Chat with care until the clinical information system (CIS) has fully deployed within a clinical area and new communication norms are widely understood. Early on, staff may forget that many matters still require face-to-face, pager or telephone communication. Secure chat should not be used to convey urgent information or to ask for urgent intervention from a colleague without person-to-person communication.

Initially, Secure Chat will be most useful for consenting clinical groups that commit to use it and agree about expected chat availability.


Drop-in Centre and Optimization Clinics

Having completed a full three weeks working with the Connect Care clinical information system, physician supports evolve to a model of embedded expertise. Please continue to follow this progression as changes are documented in the Connect Care Physician Manual (see the Support section and subsections, including Super User Schedules).

Drop-in Centre Schedules also adapt to changing needs:

Starting this week, we begin a series of Informatics Clinics for users wishing to optimize their Connect Care experience for specific workflows. More information will be posted to this blogs, but mark calendars for the first clinic this coming Wednesday November 27 at noon.


Transitioning to Sustainable Supports

As Connect Care users grow comfortable using the clinical information system, they become a valuable resource for their peers. Super Users will continue to be prominent in the workplace for a few weeks to come. However, they transition to embedded, not extraordinary, roles. Most divisions and departments have already set up clinical call schedules to ensure effective distribution of experienced and super users so that elbow-to-elbow support can continue.

If help is not close-at-hand, we encourage clinicians to make use of the Connect Care Solution Centre and Help Desk. These are available 24/7 with telephone, email and online chat channels.

The Solution Centre continues to have access to Super User, Trainer and other CMIO resources, who are on call to ensure continuity while we transition to sustainable embedded user supports.

Connect Care November 22, 2019 Newsletter Posted

The November 22, 2019, Connect Care Newsletter is available via the link below; covering 1) Connect Care successes, 2) Wave 1 launch, 3) Patient stories, and 4) Staff stories.


In-System Dictation (Dragon Medical One) Optimization Sessions

Looking to be slicker, faster (and happier!) with in-system dictation using Dragon Medical One (DMO)?

Attend a DMO Optimization sessions to learn how to use and create custom commands, hotkey shortcuts and dictation-triggered SmartText. Whatever your needs, optimization sessions can answer questions for a more personalized dictation toolkit.

To Register:
  • Visit My Learning Link (MLL) ;
  • Search “Dragon Medical One (DMO) Optimization”;
  • Select a session
    • Location: Kaye Edmonton Clinic (KEC) 3F.110
    • Duration: 1 Hour
    • Dates: November 25, 26, 28; December 3, 4, 6
    • Times: 0700-0800, 1200-1300, 1600-1700


From Launch to Optimization

Connect Care supports Alberta Health Service's (AHS) growth as a learning healthcare organization. This is an exciting time! With Wave 1 launch, we've broken through informational barriers to credible internal evidence about what works best for those we serve.

Now that care processes and outcomes are more accessible for informational improvement, it is essential that we transition from CIS break-in to optimization. We need to further streamline workflows while smoothing informational supports. There is every opportunity to help, not hinder, exceptional care.

Our launch preoccupation has been detecting and resolving technical problems. Concerns that might relate to clinical content (decision, documentation and inquiry supports) have been reviewed by rapid-action clinical system design supports from Content and Standards, Clinical Decision Support, Clinical Documentation and Clinical Inquiry Committees and, on behalf of Connect Care Council (CCC) and its Area Councils and Specialty Workgroups, the CCC Coordinating Support Unit.

This week the CCC holds its first full post-launch meeting, marking our transition to optimization. Area Councils will evaluate and prioritize issue-tickets not already closed. In addition, enhancement requests and “bright ideas” will be reviewed.

Area Councils will again take the lead in refining clinical content and determining what should be built next within their specialty. They continue to be supported by Area Council Support Units that bring together Build Teams, cORE Leads and Clinical Informatics Leads to develop, build, validate and implement clinical content.

We look forward to leveraging a great launch through even greater optimization.