There are important changes to medical records and referral processes at SCCA—read about them here
SCCA is moving to Epic as its singular electronic health record platform.
Epic is the predominant electronic health record (EHR) at health systems throughout the Puget Sound area. Patients, staff and providers in our region are familiar with Epic and its associated tools (e.g. MyChart and Care Everywhere).
On March 27, 2021, Epic will become SCCA’s singular EHR. This will provide many benefits to its patients, community sites, and referring physicians, including:
- A singular platform for all Alliance sites of care, including SCCA and University of Washington Medicine sites.
- An integrated platform for almost all areas of care.
- Reduction of multiple entries into multiple applications.
- Change adaptation in technology by adding new types of care through modules.
- Standardization of EHR records across multiple systems.
Epic gives SCCA providers expanded access to data through Care Everywhere
Care Everywhere is an Epic data sharing technology that provides access to patients’ medical records between organizations. This feature enables providers to review clinically significant information for a patient and pull it from outside organizations into the local Epic chart. When SCCA goes live with Epic Care Everywhere, SCCA providers will be able to query patients' outside records within the Epic system.
Care Everywhere works to both push and pull patient data to and from systems across the Epic landscape. When a patient arrives at a point of care that uses Epic, Care Everywhere pulls data from other health systems, and integrates the new data within the patient's record. Care Everywhere can receive these automated requests and send the summary to the requesting health system.
The move to EPIC will affect how you and your patients access records
When SCCA moves to EPIC on March 27th, it will transition medical records from U-Link to EpicCare Link.
U-Link provides free, secure, password-protected access for physicians and other licensed healthcare providers and support staff to the electronic medical record (EMR) of patients referred to or from SCCA. Until further notice, providers should continue using U-Link to access historical records prior to March 27, 2021.
EpicCare Link is a web application that allows providers at other organizations to view their patients’ clinical data from the SCCA Epic system through the internet. Clinicians who refer patients to SCCA may check on those referrals by accessing their patients’ charts. Clinicians who receive referrals from SCCA also benefit from quick access to the patient’s charts. Any external user with read-only access to patient records will have their access automatically transitioned to EpicCare Link. Providers should use EpicCare Link to access records generated after March 27, 2021.
SCCA is working to migrate all historical records from U-Link to EpicCare Link, so providers have a single system for accessing medical records. Check back for updates on when that transition is complete.
Imaging requests will be made using a web form
Community providers can access imaging by completing a simple form on the SCCA web site. Once required fields are completed, and the form is submitted, clinicians can expect to receive the requested imaging in 3-5 business days.
SCCA Patients will access their records through MyChart
As part of the migration to Epic on March 27, 2021, SCCA patients will begin using the UW/SCCA MyChart application. This is a secure platform that gives patients access to their medical records and their providers. All personal health information is private. MyChart is free for all patients and can be accessed through the Internet or a mobile app. Patients can also use MyChart to manage vital aspects of their care.
Patients who currently use Caresi to access their SCCA records will not have their accounts automatically migrated to MyChart.
21st Century Cures Act: SCCA is ready
In March 2020, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) published the “21st Century Cures Act: Interoperability, Information Blocking, and the ONC Health IT Certification Program” final rule. This rule requires that providers, health information exchanges and networks, and health IT developers do not engage in “information blocking” by knowingly interfering with the access, exchange, or use of electronic health information.
The purpose of the 21st Century Cures Act ruling on information blocking is to:
- Engage patients in their care through ease of access to records
- Make patient data requests easy and inexpensive
- Promote interoperability
- Improve patient safety
- Reduce unnecessary and duplicative care
When SCCA goes live with Epic on March 27, it will meet the federal deadline to comply with this rule. Nearly all clinical notes and results will be released to MyChart immediately, providing patients nearly instant access to their results.
SCCA physicians may delay clinical notes and results by patient request or if a provider believes that immediate release is reasonably likely to endanger the life or physical safety of the patient or another person. For more information, visit the web site for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.
Providers should check to ensure they are using a current fax number for SCCA
SCCA has retired all fax numbers with the prefix 288. Please reach us at our new prefix: (206) 606-XXXX (area code and last four digits will remain the same).
If you utilize fax lines to transmit information to SCCA, please check to ensure that any numbers programed into your fax machines do not contain the prefix 288. Please call the SCCA intake team with any questions.