Orlando, Fla. —February 25 , 2008—InterSystems Corporation today announced that application partner ForHealth Technologies, Inc. has launched intravenous (I.V.) room workflow automation software built on the InterSystems Ensemble® rapid integration platform. In pre-release sites now and available in April, IntelliFlowRxleverages Ensemble technology to set new standards for streamlining workflow and reducing opportunities for error in the I.V. room—one of the most critical and least automated areas in any hospital. InterSystems made the announcement at the HIMSS 2008 annual conference and exhibition.
The leading database provider in healthcare, InterSystems develops and markets innovative database and integration software. Its product line includes the InterSystems CACHÉ® high-performance object database, InterSystems HealthShare™ platform for regional and national electronic health records, and InterSystems Ensemble rapid integration platform. Ensemble has been ranked number one for integration engines for the last two years by KLAS, a leader in healthcare technology research.
A recognized innovator in automation systems for hospital pharmacies, ForHealth offers IntelliFill-i.v., an automated syringe-based dose preparation system, as well as the newly released IntelliFlowRx. It is positioned as the only company with a complete solution for the needs of every hospital pharmacy’s I.V. room.
I.V. Rooms—Critical and Neglected
Ensemble-based IntelliFlowRxis a unique, best-practice workflow application for hospital pharmacies that automates workflow in the I.V. room—an area where virtually all processes have been manual until now. “The hospital pharmacy prepares injectable drug doses in the I.V. room within the pharmacy,” explained Dennis Schneider, ForHealth Chief Marketing Officer. “Dose labels are printed, separated and sorted to be taken into the I.V. room—an ISO Class 8 clean room. Technicians use these labels to determine how to prepare each dose. They select the products/drugs, manually reconstitute some drugs, draw measured doses or dose components from vials into syringes, and create I.V. bags containing one or more medications at specific dose concentrations. Inspections of each dose by a registered pharmacist may happen several times per dose. It’s an almost completely manual process,” Schneider emphasized, “where the only audit trail is the initials on the label of those individuals who created and inspected the dose.”
“With such a manually-intense system,” Schneider continued, “it isn’t surprising that there are multiple opportunities for human error at every stage. Given the potentially critical impact of drugs administered by I.V., the opportunities for adverse drug reactions are well recognized as being unacceptably high. And, with increasing workloads combined with a decreasing budget in the hospital pharmacy, the I.V. room process automation delivered by IntelliFlowRx is absolutely essential for high quality care delivery,” he said.
End-to-End Workflow Management
Ensemble’s workflow management platform, graphical dashboard and embedded high-performance database were key to its selection as the integration platform for IntelliFlowRx, according to Schneider. “This is a distributed system with a very large local cache at each site that must be managed and synchronized in near real time with a highly-secure and multiply-redundant central server farm. It’s also a very graphical application that relies heavily on high-resolution digital imagery, so we needed integration software that includes a database with rich storage capabilities as well as the ability to manage automated workflows and deliver information via graphical dashboards that keep pharmacists updated on I.V. room status,” he said.
“Ensemble not only provides the capabilities we currently require, but also offers standardized HL7 messaging that we plan to leverage in future product versions.”
Designed on a distributed architecture that includes a server for the pharmacy workstations, and a backup process hosted on a server residing at offsite Navisite facilities, IntelliFlowRxstreamlines I.V. room workflow end-to-end. Components include:
- Laminar Airflow Hood Workstation—Provides fast, simple access to all doses in the queue with doses organized in microbatches to minimize potential errors and appropriate dose prioritization. Dose calculations are displayed for each ingredient, products are barcode-verified, labels are printed and all steps in dose preparation are captured for review by a pharmacist
- Pharmacist Checking Station—Pharmacists can review all steps for each dose created through a graphical display from Web-enabled workstations anywhere on the hospital’s secure intranet, eliminating the need for pharmacists to enter the I.V. clean room for process review
- Situation Board—Provides a continuously updated view of I.V. room status including backlogs, wait times, time constraints for perishable doses and the current status of all workstations.
The system also supports real-time dose status queries, maintains a complete audit trail and provides detailed management reports.
Cost-effective Pricing for an Underserved Market
IntelliFlowRxpricing is on a per-dose basis, ensuring that hospital pharmacies can utilize the innovative Ensemble-based system without a major capital outlay. “With an estimated 4,500 hospital pharmacies in the U.S. and hospital I.V. rooms generating approximately three-quarters of a billion doses annually, there is considerable market opportunity for both InterSystems and ForHealth,” Schneider noted.
“It has been exciting for us to partner with ForHealth on this much needed and highly innovative new application,” said Paul Grabscheid, InterSystems Vice President of Strategic Planning. “IntelliFlowRxmakes it possible to deliver improved quality of care while reducing the potential for medical error and increasing job satisfaction and productivity for the healthcare professionals in the I.V. room. We are very pleased to work with ForHealth in providing this breakthrough software to hospitals across the country.”
InterSystems Corporation is a global software product company with headquarters in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and offices in 22 countries. InterSystems provides innovative products that enable fast development, deployment, and integration of enterprise-class applications. InterSystems CACHÉ® is a high performance object database that makes applications faster and more scalable. InterSystems Ensemble® is a rapid integration platform that enriches applications with new functionality, and makes them connectable. InterSystems HealthShare™ is a platform that leverages existing healthcare applications to rapidly create regional or national electronic health records.
InterSystems is the world’s #1 vendor of database and integration technologies for healthcare applications. InterSystems products are used by thousands of hospitals and labs, including all 18 hospitals on the Honor Roll of America’s Best Hospitals as rated by U.S. News and World Report. For more information, visit InterSystems.com.
Founded in 1998, ForHealth Technologies delivers 21st century technology combined with professional support to uniquely enable hospital pharmacies to stay ahead of the growing challenges faced in preparing injectable medications. ForHealth Technologies solutions deliver quantum-leap improvements in key I.V. room performance metrics: accuracy, patient safety, clinician safety, speed, cost reduction, and regulatory compliance. More information is available at www.fhtinc.com
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