John Hurt 2-10-11

Host Team: Mark Falatovich, John Figueroa, Brian Benander

Epic Systems

Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Epic Systems Corporation is one of the healthcare industry's leading information technology companies, serving many of the world's largest hospitals and healthcare systems. The company's software applications fall into a number of broad categories, including e-health and handhelds, enterprise foundation, clinical, decision support, access, revenue cycle, health plan, and connectivity. Epic's product trademarks include Analyst, Bridges, Cadence, Chronicles, Clarity, Cohort, EpicCare, Epicenter, EpicLink, EpicOnHand, EpicRx, EpicWeb, Identifier, Identity, MyChart, MyEpic, OpTime, Prelude, Resolute, Revenue Guardian, SmartForms, and Tapestry. According to Epic, its software applications help healthcare providers to "improve the patient experience, provide more effective care, streamline administrative tasks, and strengthen their financial health." Epic puts a premium on remaining independent. To maintain its focus and organic culture, the company has avoided public stock offerings, mergers, and the acquisition of other firms. Some 90 percent of Epic's staff is devoted to customer service or research and development initiatives.

This website also has a lot about EPIC programs.

Epic (behind the scenes)

Epic runs on two distinct sets of hardware. The front end uses Visual Basic 6 interface and the back end uses Mumps. Mumps was designed in the 60's specifically for hospitals and also for banks. It uses a string based language with static data "variables" stored in binary trees.

Electronic Medical Records (EMR)

The Cleveland Clinic has used electronic medical records for over ten years now. All patient data is stored electronically (no more paper charts).

  • EMRs are divided into two sections; Inpatient and Ambulatory (outpatient).
  • Data is stored either at the patient or encoutner level.
  • The data stored for information develops from many different third party systems.

Ambulatory Visit Navigator

  • Divided into Activity -> Navigator -> Navigator Sections
  • Each section contains a different focus (Vitals, Review of systems, History of present illness, Billing, etc).
  • Each section also has a report that shows all versions of all data entered

Questions and Answers

Q. How did you get trained for your job?
A. I was given a textbook on MUMPS to read. So, for a while, I was getting paid to just read and learn. Once I got a grasp on MUMPS, I was trained by people with the job. There was not too much of a learning curve once I understood the language.

Q. Do you make use of pair programming often?
A. Not usually. Mainly, I stick to myself with my work. However, when there are big issues and I need advice, I will consult with others so that I know that I am making the correct decisions.

Q. What did you learn from your courses at John Carroll that helped you in getting a job?
A. The programming practices that I learned at John Carroll are the main things that stuck with me after graduation. More specific knowledge, such as a specific language, deteriorate with time. However, the proper way of thinking stays with you, and that is what I attribute to my John Carroll education.