James “Jamey” Thaw, the CEO of Athens (Ga.) Regional Health Systems is resigning from his position, in large part, because of a botched implementation of the organization's Cerner electronic health record (EHR) system, local media outlets report.
The local Athens media reported that the Cerner EHR rollout was a point of controversy for practitioners. The EHR was announced as going live on May 4 in a news release by Athens Regional Health Systems. A few weeks later, the Athens Banner-Herald reports that more than a dozen physicians affiliated with the system sent a letter to Thaw and CIO Gretchen Tegethoff noting their concerns with the EHR. They said the EHR install was too aggressive, there was a lack of readiness among users, and patient safety was at risk.
Thaw said that there was a "swift response" to those concerns. However, one week after the letter from the practitioners was sent, the doctors voted unanimously in having no confidence in the present hospital administration, Flagpole.com reports. So far, Athens Regional Health Systems has yet to cite specific reasons for Thaw's resignation.
This would not be the first time that a hospital administrator left because of a failed EHR rollout. In Maine, one CIO was dismissed over an expensive, failed Epic implementation.
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