Berkshire Healthcare facilities awarded electronic health record funds

GREENFIELD, NORTHAMPTON AND EAST LONGMEADOW, MASS. (October 27, 2015) – Berkshire Healthcare Systems, which provides long-term nursing and post-acute care in the Pioneer Valley and across Massachusetts, has been awarded $82,500 to improve patient care and safety through enhanced technology. The Massachusetts e-Health Institute (MeHI) awarded the funds through the eQuality Incentive Program (eQIP). Pioneer Valley affiliates that will benefit include Charlene Manor Extended Care Facility in Greenfield, Linda Manor Extended Care Facility in Northampton, and East Longmeadow Skilled Nursing Center.

The grant will support electronic health record use at Berkshire Healthcare’s 14 long-term care facilities across Massachusetts, which have a total of 1,960 skilled nursing beds.

The MeHI award will support Berkshire Healthcare’s work to track patient care accurately to improve efficiency and protect patient safety. The multi-phase project includes technology advances, and extensive training and preparation of staff. The investment will help streamline care and reduce unnecessary costs.

“Berkshire Healthcare is very grateful to be included among those receiving funds,” said Kenneth Ward, Senior IT Director. “This will be tremendously helpful in our efforts to advance patient safety and system efficiency, furthering our work with clinical partners across the state.”

The rollout of electronic health record systems has already added improved systems to document care at the “point of service,” which assists with care planning and appropriate staffing. The next phase, beginning in November, will include infection control documentation and incident reporting, intended to improve patient safety.

Berkshire Healthcare is a leader among not-for-profit, post-acute care organizations in Massachusetts, and owns or operates 14 rehabilitation and skilled nursing facilities in Massachusetts; Kimball Farms, a life care, continuing care retirement community in Lenox, Mass.; Linda Manor Assisted Living in Northampton; HospiceCare in The Berkshires and Hospice of Franklin County for those with life-limiting illnesses; IntegriNurse, specializing in the placement of nursing staff in facilities across Massachusetts; and IntegriScript, Berkshire Healthcare’s institutional pharmacy which serves Berkshire affiliates. Berkshire Healthcare’s skilled nursing centers provide around-the-clock nursing care and patient-centered rehabilitation services, short-term rehabilitation, and post-acute and long-term care. Berkshire Healthcare is managed by an affiliate of Berkshire Health Systems, the leading provider of comprehensive health care services in the Berkshires. For more information visit www.berkshirehealthcare.org.