Epic MyChart use growing every day

Staff in the Smilow Multispecialty Oncology Outpatient Clinic work closely with patients to enroll them in their MyChart account so they can see their lab results as soon as they are available. Nurses work with PFAs to ensure that all patients are signed up. Shown (l-r) are: MacKenzie Smith, RN; Cindy Cacace, clinical referral specialist, PFAS; Michelle McLane, RN, nurse coordinator; and Diane Dirzius, RN.
Staff in the Smilow Multispecialty Oncology Outpatient Clinic work closely with patients to enroll them in their MyChart account so they can see their lab results as soon as they are available. Nurses work with PFAs to ensure that all patients are signed up. Shown (l-r) are: MacKenzie Smith, RN; Cindy Cacace, clinical referral specialist, PFAS; Michelle McLane, RN, nurse coordinator; and Diane Dirzius, RN.

Now that Epic is fully implemented at Yale-New Haven Hospital, staff and patients have started to turn their attention to MyChart, Epic's interactive patient portal. MyChart makes it easy for patients to access their personal health information and become more active partners in their health care.

MyChart allows patients 24/7 to schedule or request appointments, view test results, request prescription refills, keep track of allergies, immunizations and medications, and communicate securely with their healthcare providers online.

"Epic is all about one chart in one system, which caregivers can access anywhere, any time," said Daniel Barchi, chief information officer, YNHHS and Yale School of Medicine. "MyChart extends this concept to patients, giving them confidential, round-the-clock access to portions of their medical records via the Internet. It helps make care more convenient, safer and more effective for the patient and provider to manage."

More than 19,000 patients are active MyChart users and almost 1,500 providers at more than 265 sites affiliated with the health system use MyChart.

Patients can become active MyChart users in two ways: upon discharge, their nurse will help them activate their MyChart account if their primary care physician is an Epic provider; or following their outpatient visit or office appointment with their Epic provider, they can use their activation code to enroll in MyChart.

If a patient is not enrolled before hospital discharge, patients can use the MyChart activation code, which is printed at the bottom of his/her After Visit Summary (AVS). The AVS is a user-friendly Epic document that helps patients better understand and remember what they discussed at the hospital and/or with their provider. Patients can also activate their free MyChart account from home, using the activation code on their AVS.

"When we first went live with Epic, our primary focus was on getting staff trained and using the new computer system. Now that we are fully implemented, we can make sure patients are aware of MyChart, understand the benefits and know how to sign up," said Lisa Stump, vice president and Epic Project director. "Patient-driven care is important, and Yale- New Haven is out in front in optimizing the health of each individual we serve."

Patients' after visit summaries are electronically filed in their MyChart accounts. At any time, a patient can review health education topics related to his/her overall personal health.

Employees should discuss MyChart with their healthcare provider if he or she is on Epic. For a list of physicians who are using Epic, employees visit https://mychart.ynhhs.org and click on list of participating providers in the right-hand column.