Skip to Content
Photo of hospital staff discussing electronic health records.
Case Study

Ramsey County uses electronic health records (EHR) to improve health information accessibility

April 6, 2018 / 3 min read

Ramsey County, Minn., the second most populous county in a prominent Midwestern state, with a rapidly growing population of over a half million, faced issues adopting and utilizing multiple electronic health record (EHR) systems. Here's how they improved health information accessibility.

The challenge

With a growing refugee population, many constituents required county-based medical services. The county created the Health and Wellness Administrative Division, which provides support for a diverse group of government health services including: social services (adult and children’s mental health, chemical health, and detoxification), public health (family health, sexually transmitted diseases, immunization clinics, and adult and adolescent corrections), home health, and long-term care. Over time, the county implemented multiple EHR systems to gather and track constituent health information. Unfortunately, EHR adoption, utilization, and success were inconsistent and uncoordinated.

The county maintained several disparate EHR systems. Each was independently operated and maintained with no ability to link county resident’s health information across the continuum of care. This resulted in significant manual processing. The county sought to identify and evaluate options to efficiently and effectively standardize, maintain, upgrade, and optimize these technology services to better align departments and support the county’s long-term needs.

The solution

The county engaged our experts to develop an EHR maintenance and support model that would ensure the systems satisfy county objectives; are well-maintained and supported; end users are properly engaged and trained; and that a governance structure is developed to support coordination of EHR practices across all county health and wellness services.

While working side by side with the Health and Wellness Service Team, we designed a model for ongoing end-user support. Our experts:

The benefit

With a revised and robust EHR service model and support system, the county can properly support the needs of their constituents through improved consistency, efficiency, and efficacy of service. The optimized support model not only allows for cost savings for the county and its taxpayers, but it improves employee and resident morale through the improved service.

“I feel confident, and our board is assured, that we've done our due diligence and that we'll be able to support and maintain the electronic health record systems we are implementing well into the future," said Karen Saltis, Health and Wellness Administrative Division Director. "The Plante Moran assessment validated our concerns around support and maintenance of our EHR systems and provided us with the recommendations and resources we needed to properly build that support.”

Related Thinking

Outside of a bakery
June 13, 2024

Franchise operators: Three reasons to take accounting off your plate

Article 3 min read
Food and beverage cookie manufacturer equipment using smart manufacturing processes.
June 3, 2024

Cybersecurity in food manufacturing: Ransomware threats

Article 3 min read
Cybersecurity professional on their laptop in a server room.
April 29, 2024

Bridging the widening cybersecurity skills gap

Article 5 min read