Stage 7 – Common Challenges in the HIMSS EMR Adoption Journey

solarity | February 21st, 2018

HIMSS EMR Adoption Model

Many HIM leaders today are being approached by their IT teams to support their facility’s effort to reach Stage 7 of the HIMSS EMR Adoption Model.  For some HIM professionals, this may be a completely foreign topic, as IT teams often drive reaching stages 0 – 6.  It is often not until attempting to reach Stage 7 that the HIM department is ingrained in the process.


All clinically relevant data must exist electronically in the EMR within 24 hours of creation.

According to HIMSS Analytics, the most common challenges regarding reaching Stage 7 surprisingly still surround the use of paper medical records.  To be validated as a Stage 7 hospital,  all clinically relevant information must exist electronically in the EMR within 24 hours of creation, not 24 hours of discharge. This still proves to be the biggest hurdle for most healthcare facilities because this must be proven throughout the entire facility.  If clinically relevant information is found in one area that is more than 24 hours old and does not exist in the EMR, the healthcare facility will not pass the Stage 7 requirements.

Other Common Stage 7 Challenges

According to HIMSS Analytics

  • Electronic medication administration record (eMAR) technology: Post-op antibiotic and pain medication not in the eMAR.
  • PACS  – Ultrasounds not available in PACS.
  • Nursing flow sheets – Often created on paper and keyed into the system at a later date.

Eliminating Paper for Good

Without a doubt, “How can you help us reach Stage 7” is one of the questions EDCO® Health Information Solutions receives most.  For many healthcare facilities, eliminating paper and reaching Stage 7 takes a change in process that enables paper documentation to be scanned at the point of care, rather than centrally in the HIM department. Significant challenges arise when documents are indexed at the point of care.  A distributed scanning and centralized indexing model provides the necessary parameters to reach the Stage 7 requirements, and also maintain quality control in the health information management department.


To learn more, watch this brief two minute video on scanning medical records at the point of care.