University of Arizona Health Network is nearly $30 million in debt and its pricey electronic medical record (EMR) implementation is a big reason why.
The two hospital, multi-clinic system, the largest in Southern Arizona, paid an estimated $115 million to install its Epic Systems (the Verona, Wisc.-based company) EMR. The total, Arizona Daily Star reports, included $32 million in non-budgeted costs that occurred because the health system had a two-month delay in getting the EMR live and it needed extra support for training.
The Arizona Daily Star notes that there are other reasons the health system is in debt, including not getting uninsured patients coverage through the Affordable Care Act. Also, why while the system is pricey, leaders of the organization say that it will improve patient safety and eventually save money due to increased efficiency.