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Voice-enabled virtual assistant software from Nuance expected to make it easier to record information.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center is an early adopter of new voice-enabled virtual assistant software from Nuance Communications being offered to all users of its Dragon Medical One cloud-based clinical documentation platform.

Vanderbilt is an existing client of the vendor’s virtual assistant technology, and its executives believe that use of the voice-enabled upgrade will ease documentation tasks.

“With Nuance’s virtual assistant technology we can empower our providers to feel more connected to their work and have seen quantifiable time savings,” says Yaa Kumah-Crystal, MD, an assistant professor of biomedical informatics and pediatric endocrinology at Vanderbilt. “We have finally arrived at a place where technology has parity with human recognition.”

Vanderbilt expects benefits from the new technology to include reducing burden on care teams, enabling providers to spend more time with patients, logging into an application rather than using a keyboard, easing the burden of accessing information in the electronic health record and reducing the time spent documenting care.

Here are other new contracts and implementations reported this past week.

* Tenet Healthcare has extended its contract with Cerner under a long-term agreement. The companies will focus on use of intelligence in automation to optimize clinicians’ user experience, interoperability of systems and the building of a modern cloud infrastructure. Through Tenet’s participation in the CommonWell Health Alliance national data sharing network, clinicians will have access to an aggregated system to view patient records across various types of healthcare facilities.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Vanderbilt University

* East Tennessee Children’s Hospital in Knoxville is using Meditech’s centralized electronic supply chain system to improve ordering and reduce cost, resulting in a big improvement from existing paper-based processes, with an expectation of saving $1.3 million in inventory costs this year. Steven Godbold, vice president of operations and chief operating officer, estimates the 152-bed facility will cut its standing inventory from $4 million to $2.5 million. NTT DATA also is working with the organization to help the hospital become more streamlined in its materials management processes.

* Heritage Valley Health System, an integrated delivery system serving parts of Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia has signed a 10-year extension with Allscripts under which the organization will get an integrated clinical and financial platform that includes Allscripts’ Sunrise EHR, Sunrise Financial Manager, dbMotion and Allscripts EPSI applications. Three-hospital Heritage Valley has 4,400 employees, 530 physicians, more than 60 physician offices and 21 community satellite facilities.

* Providence St. Joseph Health, serving parts of Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washington, has expanded its use of provider matching and provider data management products of KyruusOne. The delivery system has broadened its relationship with the vendor several times since contracting with the company almost five years ago. The new expansion focuses on integrating and enhancing patient access to providers from St. Joseph Health.


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