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CVS Health picks Epic EHR for specialty care management

by Thomas Dworetzky, Contributing Reporter | March 06, 2017
Business Affairs Health IT
The Epic electronic health record system will be deployed for CVS Specialty's care management programs, the pharmacy giant has announced.

"As the specialty pharmacy of choice for many payors and patients, we are focused on creating the most clinically advanced specialty pharmacy experience, to help improve care and outcomes for our patients," Dr. Alan Lotvin, executive vice president of CVS Specialty said in a statement.

"We are pleased to transition our care management programs onto the Epic platform, which will enable immediate information sharing with other health care providers across the patient's entire care team. This connectivity is integral in providing the best possible, coordinated health," Lotvin continued.
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The Epic EHR system had been used by its MinuteClinic, a transition that began in 2015.

Since Epic is the most-used EHR in the U.S., advised CVS, it will facilitate connectivity with many health care providers now using the system.

Epic ships 1.3 million records daily between a variety of health care organizations, including hospitals, clinics and providers.

The transition will include Accordant, which provides care management program services for patients with rare, chronic diseases.

"By transitioning to the Epic EHR, we can further coordinate care across health care disciplines and settings, which promotes more effective and informed health care decision making," stated Trip Hofer, President of Accordant.

CVS has the biggest specialty pharmacy in the U.S. Specialty pharmacies handle “advanced clinical services” for those with complex or rare conditions who are eligible. This pharmacy includes various services, such as drug therapy, infusion services, and specialized support and counseling.

Epic's CEO Judy Faulkner has ridden the wave of EHRs since the company was founded in 1979 with $70,000.

Faulkner told the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel in 2016 that its first computer "sounded like a washing machine," when it ran.

The company has grown from its initial one-and-one-half employees to over 9,500 people.

Today, the company told the paper, “the 15 hospitals that receive the most money in research grants from the National Institutes of Health are Epic customers,” and also, “almost two-thirds of medical students and residents receive their training at academic medical centers that have an Epic system.”

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