Jefferson Regional Medical Center was recently recognized by Hospitals and Health Networks Magazine as one of the Most Wired hospitals in the nation and was the only hospital in the state to receive this designation.

Jefferson Regional Medical Center was recently recognized by Hospitals and Health Networks Magazine as one of the Most Wired hospitals in the nation and was the only hospital in the state to receive this designation.

JRMC said in a press release that the survey was conducted between Jan. 15 and March 15 and asked hospital and health system officials across the United States to answer questions about their information technology initiatives. The survey was answered by roughly 30 percent of all U.S. hospitals, according to JRMC.

“In order to receive Most Wired status, organizations must meet specific requirements in four focus areas: infrastructure, business and administrative management, clinical quality and safety (inpatient/outpatient) and clinical integration,” the JRMC press release said.

Walter Johnson is JRMC President and CEO.

“Being named Most Wired is a tremendous recognition,” Johnson said. “For more than 10 years we have been developing and implementing integrated clinical solutions at JRMC, which have increased efficiency, reduced costs and enhanced the overall quality of care at our facility. Being a leader in this field benefits the patients, the hospital and ultimately the entire Southeast Arkansas community.”

Patrick Neece is JRMC assistant vice president and chief information officer.

“The award signifies the advancements and achievements that JRMC has made in the utilization and adoption of health care technology,” Neece said. “This utilization improves patient outcomes and safety, reduces overall cost and improves operation efficiencies for the hospital.”

Neece said that examples of this technology include the use of bar code technology to administer medications and to ensure patient safety; and the use of wireless technology on patient floors to allow physicians, nurses and others to use mobile devices to document patient conditions and to monitor patients.

Neece said health care technology is not confined to the clinical areas of the hospital.

“We also use health care technology in our financial and operational environments,” Neece said.

Andy Jenkins, the JRMC Administrative Director for Information Systems, said that the process that led to the hospital receiving the Most Wired recognition has been 10 years in the making.

“We’ve been integrating clinical solutions since 2003,” Jenkins said. “Since that time we have implemented processes such as medication bar code administration, physician CPOE and structured documentation. Information technology has become an integral part of our health care delivery system.”

JRMC said in the press release that early on in the transformation process it partnered with a company to develop a computer software plan that would completely reinvent the way medical information and documentation were created, utilized, distributed and stored. In 2011 JRMC was the first hospital in Arkansas and one of the first in the nation to receive incentive funds from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act for demonstrating meaningful use of an advanced electronic health care record system.