Premier Health Presents at EPIC Users Group Meeting

At the end of each summer, the small town of Verona, Wisconsin (population 10,610), almost triples in size when it is inundated with more than 20,000 Epic users from across the world who attend Epic Systems Corporation’s Users Group Meeting, or UGM.

This year, Premier Health’s System Support Clinical Informatics (CI) team (Renea Crawford, Bonnie Rieger, and Pam Phelps) ventured to Verona for the meeting. Not only was this the first time at UGM for two team members, but we were also on the agenda as presenters, sharing about Premier Health’s optimization of the Epic Nurse Manager Dashboards (NAC11 - Optimizing Nurse Manager Dashboards: What a Hike!).

When we arrived on Epic’s campus, thousands of people were arriving by the busload. Fortunately, we were scheduled to present on day one of the four-day conference. We were here, and there was no turning back now. Our team’s dress code fit the theme of the conference, “The Great Outdoors,” as we walked in wearing our flannels, khakis, and hiking boots!

Despite our team’s preparations for the presentation, we never fathomed the number of attendees who would choose to come to our session. Approximately 500 attendees filled all seats, and people were left sitting in window sills, standing along the wall, and grouped in the doorways. This was after the Epic employees were instructed to make additional room by moving to a remote location where our presentation was simulcast. The presentation itself lasted 30 minutes, covering the challenges we faced in the project, how we navigated our way, and finally our outcomes and lessons learned. Immediately after the presentation, we hosted a brief Q&A session. That evening, and in the following days, we received additional questions and positive feedback from several organizations seeking to implement similar tools.

UGM is an annual conference where health care decision makers, strategists, and leaders from across the world gather to network, learn about upcoming innovations, discuss industry trends, and share organizational stories about how Epic’s tools have been successfully leveraged to support safe, effective, and patient-centered care. Attendees range from executives (CEOs, CNOs, CMIOs, CNIOs, and the like) and directors, to clinical users such as physicians, nurses, and pharmacists.

During the week of sessions, participants have the option to attend many types of sessions, including “unsessions” and usability testing. Unsessions have a topic to guide the conversation but no formal agenda, allowing attendees to talk about what’s hot at their organization, ask questions, and seek insight into details that might not be covered in scheduled sessions. Usability testing allows end users to try out future enhancements that are in the works at Epic. Users can select specific workflows they would like to test, and give feedback that allows Epic to consider before releasing the enhancements.

At the end of our journey in “The Great Outdoors,” we traveled home to Dayton with our backpacks loaded with new ideas and a wonderful sense of pride after having had the opportunity to showcase some of the exemplary work that’s done here at Premier Health.

Now we’re ready to plan our next adventure.

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