Dixie Regional makes data system upgrades, cafe feeds 3,200 a day

ST. GEORGE — Dixie Regional Medical Center is a bustling network of activity these days, as a new data management system is implemented throughout the hospital, the sixth facility in Intermountain Healthcare’s system of 22 hospitals so far to take part in the program.

Dixie Regional Medical Center's River Road Campus, St. George, Utah, Oct. 28, 2016 | St. George News
Dixie Regional Medical Center’s River Road Campus, St. George, Utah, Oct. 28, 2016 | St. George News

The Intermountain Healthcare network is receiving an upgrade.

In 2015 the Cerner Corp and Intermountain Healthcare began implementing iCentra, an electronic health record management and billing system, into its network of 22 hospitals and 185 clinics.

Dixie Regional Medical Center in St. George is the sixth hospital to receive the new health information technology.

Implementing a data management system is a massive endeavor that requires hundreds of Cerna system coaches and technical support staff to be on hand for training and coaching for the first week or so, Intermountain’s southwest region communications director, Terri Draper, said.

A certain number of the technical support staff remain onsite for several weeks, she said, while the integration progresses to address any challenges that naturally result from such an enormous change.

In addition to increased activity and traffic inside the hospital over the last week, there are other areas affected.

More cars are filling the 1,935 parking spaces available at the medical center’s River Road campus, and more meals are being prepared by the hospital kitchen staff as well.

Eric Wilkinson and staff preparing more than 3,200 meals per day while the computer system upgrade takes place at Dixie Regional Medical Center's River Road Campus, St. George, Utah, Octg. 28, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News
Eric Wilkinson and staff preparing more than 3,200 meals per day while the computer system upgrade takes place at Dixie Regional Medical Center’s River Road Campus, St. George, Utah, Octg. 28, 2016 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

Eric Wilkinson is director of food and nutrition services at the Sandstone Cafe at the River Road campus, which serves not only patients but the is an open buffet-style venue available to the public as well.  He said 3,200 meals are being prepared daily for patients, hospital employees, the cafe and the Cerna support staff.

See St. George News’ video tour through the kitchen – play the video at the top of this story.

“In addition to what the kitchen normally prepares daily,” Wilkinson said, “we are also preparing meals for the Cerna staff”.

The kitchen is also providing meals to hospital employees while the conversion is taking place.

Instead of going off-site for lunch or other breaks hospital employees are sticking close to the hospital, which enables them to take advantage of the help that’s available through the Cerna coaches and support technicians. To support those efforts, Wilkinson said, the kitchen is providing meals that are delivered to the employees so they can remain on-site and still eat a nutritious meal.

“Any change this big is very stressful,” the director said, “and providing our employees with a nutritious meal helps to alleviate some of that stress.”

And this is no ordinary hospital food, Wilkinson said.

“We are even listed on TripAdvisor,” he said, “and I believe we received a four-star rating.”

As this report publishes, TripAdvisor rates the medical center’s Sandstone Cafe with about 4.25  of a possible 5 stars – or points. The cafe is a favorite eating spot for residents in the area, some making it part of their regular weekly routine having nothing to do with visiting patients.

But patients have their favorite meals as well, Wilkinson said. As a matter of fact, one of the most popular items for patients is salmon, and 675 of them are prepared every month accompanied by more than 2,100 orders of fruit salad.

From the new data management system and ongoing construction to the kitchen that takes pride in having their own highly qualified chef, Intermountain Healthcare’s mission remains the same:

Providing extraordinary care and superior service at an affordable cost.

Travis Sheffield is the project manager for Intermountain Healthcare and has been involved in the iCentra integration since the beginning.

“Having this new system allows us to concentrate our efforts on our business at Intermountain Healthcare,” Sheffied said, “which is the business of helping people get well, get better, and to live healthy lives.”

Click on photo to enlarge it, then use your left-right arrow keys to cycle through the gallery.

Email: cblowers@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

 

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1 Comment

  • wilbur October 29, 2016 at 4:02 pm

    Gee.

    The new ObabaCare-mandated software is here (with the 100,000 patient sickness code); nice to see it’s being spun as an upgrade.

    (I wonder who ultimately foots the bill though?)

    Speaking of upgrades, the patient food really could use some help.

    This past spring I got the world’s worst chicken sandwich and later the next day, the galaxys’ worst meatballs.

    Had to struggle to get out of there and stay alive.

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