How to Overcome Community Connect Adoption Challenges
Building a new, customized Epic system for your healthcare organization is a substantial investment that can take years to complete. Many organizations have a pressing need for an electronic health record (EHR) platform, but simply don't have the time or resources to accomplish everything on their own.
Maybe you've considered Epic's Community Connect as a possible solution. Or you may already be engaged in the process—and for good reason. The cost-effective program makes it possible for smaller organizations to join a larger system's existing Epic network and take a significant step toward digital transformation goals.
However, Community Connect also brings its own set of challenges. Some of the most common are a lack of control over workflow customization, difficulties coordinating and implementing new projects, and inadequate IT support.
According to KLAS in their EpicCare Ambulatory 2020—Community Connect report, “compared to organizations directly contracted with Epic, Community Connect users are less satisfied in nearly every KLAS metric—including overall performance and how likely customers are to recommend Epic to peers.”
CTG recognizes that making the most of Community Connect and all that Epic has to offer requires an in-depth understanding of the challenges, as well as applying lessons learned and proven solution-driven best practices to overcome them.
Common Community Connect Challenges:
1. Lack of workflow customization
Many organizations involved with Community Connect struggle with a lack of control over how their workflows are customized. Larger organizations already have their defined workflows in their Epic system and frequently resist change requests from their smaller partners.
This makes it difficult to create the processes you need, adjusting to predetermined workflows can be challenging—especially since your care delivery needs are inherently nuanced and specific to your patients and providers. The end result is a significant and constant source of frustration for your team.
2. Difficulty Developing New Projects
The lack of clarity, consensus, or consistency on how new projects are approved can also be tough. For example, if a provider group that's partnered with a regional hospital system wants to expand its offerings, it must work within the larger organization's timeline and procedures to integrate them into the EHR.
Additional steps might help avoid redundancies, but they can also delay the work needed to support patient care, hinder revenue growth, and potentially create higher costs for the build.
Similarly, you might find that new processes and required approvals aren't always clearly communicated, creating additional delays and strain on your IT team. Lack of coordination and support may cause your organization's projects to fall short of their full potential.
3. Inadequate IT Support
Organizations working directly with Epic receive high-quality vendor support. But, those that join through Community Connect have to rely on their partner organization for IT help. This can be challenging for both parties.
Smaller organizations with limited IT support may experience lengthy delays in resolving critical issues. Meanwhile, their larger partner finds itself in the unfamiliar role of a vendor, struggling to meet support needs while also managing its own massive IT workload.
Downtime and outages of the hosting system can also be an issue. Partner organizations have no control over the timing of planned maintenance or bringing the system back online. This may leave you unable to meet the needs of your patients and staff for undefined periods, possibly resulting in lost revenue, a negative impact on patient care, etc.
However, you don’t need to struggle through these issues alone. CTG has developed an extensive portfolio of solution-driven tools to help your team navigate these challenges and enjoy the benefits of Community Connect.
CTG’s Epic Community Connect Solutions
CTG offers comprehensive Community Connect support with full program management, a dedicated help desk, and legacy application conversion to help your organization get the most out of Epic. We are your partner with the resources and experience needed to overcome these common challenges.
Customize Your Workflow
CTG helps navigate workflow negotiations to align with your partner's needs while still maintaining the functionality that's critical to your care delivery. After an agreement is reached, we also offer training services to help your team learn the new workflow.
New Project Support
CTG’s team of skilled analysts can coordinate and support each new project while avoiding redundancies and sharing our deep expertise with your team. You don't have to settle for slow progress and disappointing results.
High-Quality IT Support
CTG also provides a dedicated Epic service desk for your clinical staff, so you won't have to rely on your partner organization for IT support. We can manage both the implementation process and the ongoing support your organization needs without requiring any extra effort or oversight from your team.
Want to learn how your organization can get past these challenges to experience the benefits of Epic's Community Connect? Contact CTG today. We've helped hundreds of organizations like yours, and we're eager to support your digital transformation.
Managing Director, Health Solutions, North America
With more than 25 years’ experience in the healthcare industry, Tanya Johnson has a strong track record of managing and building solution practices. She has expertise in the full EHR lifecycle, including implementation, training, activation, and value-based care. Ms. Johnson also has experience in cloud, device migration and training, and software testing (automated and crowdsourced).
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