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Epic Revealed

May 29, 2008
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For years, Epic Systems has been the “quiet, stalking giant” of healthcare IT, racking up more and more hospitals, medical groups and health systems as customers while carefully trying to stay out of the limelight. So what's the secret to the success of this quiet company? Read our cover story, “Behind the Curtain,” page 22 to see how Epic's unwavering commitment to its unique values has created a recipe for success.

Our annual Healthcare Informatics 100 survey is always an eagerly anticipated issue — and this year, thanks to some expert help, we've made it more relevant than ever. Read “HCI 100,” page 52 for a list of the top 100 healthcare IT companies by revenue. Also this year, for the first time, we're including the “missing” healthcare IT companies that should be on the list due to revenue, but didn't submit. We also round out the HCI 100 with an M&A section to cover what has been a very busy year for buying and selling corporations.

When the children of actor Dennis Quaid nearly died from a medication error, it was big news. Though “the five rights” of medication administration are standard operating procedure these days, mistakes in process are still frequent. In Part I of a three-part series “Closing the Loop,” page 90, HCI examines the initial patient encounter. We talk to hospitals to find out if CPOE is a threshold for success at reducing errors — and the importance of integration back into an EMR. In the following months, we'll also look at the pharmacy piece of the chain and, lastly, bedside medication administration.

According to the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO), the number one root cause of infant abductions is unmonitored entry and exit points. As part of its 2007 Environment of Care standards, JCAHO requires that hospitals develop and implement a proactive infant abduction prevention plan and consider implementing options for controlling access to the nursery. In “Far From Child's Play,” page 102, read how hospitals are using IT to ensure babies and mothers never lose touch.

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