Citrix® over the years has become the cornerstone of application delivery in health care. At Atrius Health, the largest independent medical group in Massachusetts, this technology is essential for serving our 720,000 patients.Ninety five percent of the Atrius Health care community—including all of our clinicians—use Citrix to access our epic electronic medical records, either in our offices, or securely from remote locations. Because we have an obligation to provide our patients with the best possible care, we need to make sure that we can share their important medical information across our care teams – not only within our practice locations, but also outside of our organization.
Atrius Health is an ambulatory multi-specialty practice —we do not own any hospitals, nor are we part of a hospital system. Instead, we have relationships with hundreds of partner organizations in our region —preferred hospitals and community specialists that serve or are likely to serve our patients at any point in time. In order for these relationships to be effective, our partners must know as much as possible about our patients before treating them.
Using Citrix, our partner organizations have incorporated our electronic medical record into their own systems through what we call a “Reverse Magic Button.”We developed 21 of these active interoperable portals and embedded them inside our partners’ Epic environments, allowing them to jump into our system and see the medical history and charts of a patient that they are treating (with the appropriate legal agreements in place to cover healthcare privacy requirements). For example, if one of our patients is admitted to the emergency department at a nearby hospital, and that hospital has availability to our magic button and appropriate access,the attending physicianwill be able to access the patient’s medical history in our EMR and identify any medications, conditions and risk factors that are required knowledge for caring for them, as well as to avoid duplication of testing.
Citrix technology has helped to make seamless care coordination and information sharing a reality for health care organization and patients alike
In creating these interoperability tools, Citrix enables us to become a 24/7 health care information resource to our partners, 365 days a year. This is especially important when our primary care practices are closed after regular business hours or on holidays, so that an outside provider will not have to waste any time trying to reach us in an emergency situation for our patient.
Moving forward, Citrix has an interesting portfolio of products, and they are incorporating smart technology and practical operational designin terms of what their complete product portfoliooffering can deliver. Technology such as hybrid cloud application delivery, advanced security and behavioral analytics, unified file space and device management tools will only further our ability to securely expand our and our partners’ reach into our patients’ information for shared treatment. It will also allow us to have more automated failover mechanisms should our in-house Citrix environment encounter a technical issue that cannot immediately be resolved – an important attribute when considering how to design business continuity systems.
While Citrixhas become an incredibly useful tool in the healthcare space, the people using and implementing the technology will determine the quality and security of care our patients receive. It will be important that Citrix’s service teams work closely with customers like Atrius Health to together develop better solutions for sharing and protecting patient information. As more companies work to innovate application delivery systems and compete in this space, Citrix can work to set themselves apart by focusing on excellent service and collaboration with their customers.This involves focusing every day on service metrics, regularly deploying customer satisfaction surveys, and reallyembedding themselves as part of a team invested in what is best for the patient.This is especially crucial in terms of health data security. Because patient data is such a target for hackers, health care organizations will continue to rely on the company’s expertise for working with them to develop solutions for protecting patient information.
Citrix technology has helped to make seamless care coordination and information sharing a reality for health care organization and patients alike. As we continue to fulfill our obligations to our patients, we look forward to closely working with Citrix to improve care delivery and develop new ways for our partners to easily access patient data and ensure the protection of those we serve.