Appl Clin Inform 2018; 09(03): 519-527
DOI: 10.1055/s-0038-1666843
Research Article
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Creation and Use of an Electronic Health Record Reporting Database to Improve a Laboratory Test Utilization Program

Danielle E. Kurant
Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
,
Jason M. Baron
Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
,
Genti Strazimiri
Partners HealthCare, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
,
Kent B. Lewandrowski
Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
,
Joseph W. Rudolf
Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States
,
Anand S. Dighe
Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
Partners HealthCare, Boston, Massachusetts, United States
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

28 March 2018

26 May 2018

Publication Date:
11 July 2018 (online)

Abstract

Objectives Laboratory-based utilization management programs typically rely primarily on data derived from the laboratory information system to analyze testing volumes for trends and utilization concerns. We wished to examine the ability of an electronic health record (EHR) laboratory orders database to improve a laboratory utilization program.

Methods We obtained a daily file from our EHR containing data related to laboratory test ordering. We then used an automated process to import this file into a database to facilitate self-service queries and analysis.

Results The EHR laboratory orders database has proven to be an important addition to our utilization management program. We provide three representative examples of how the EHR laboratory orders database has been used to address common utilization issues. We demonstrate that analysis of EHR laboratory orders data has been able to provide unique insights that cannot be obtained by review of laboratory information system data alone. Further, we provide recommendations on key EHR data fields of importance to laboratory utilization efforts.

Conclusion We demonstrate that an EHR laboratory orders database may be a useful tool in the monitoring and optimization of laboratory testing. We recommend that health care systems develop and maintain a database of EHR laboratory orders data and integrate this data with their laboratory utilization programs.

Protection of Human and Animal Subjects

This study was performed in compliance with the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki on Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects.