Now that we have taken you through all the steps to prepare for your MEDITECH 6.x implementation, it’s time to discuss the moment of arrival: go-live. As stressful as this phase can be on everyone involved, we have a few tips that will make this transition a smooth process.
The go-live phase has tasks leading up to the go-live date, on the day before, the day of and after go-live date. Here are 4 key components to keep in mind:
- Approach: The go-live approach needs to be documented in your go-live plan which details the tasks required to bring your organization live on the software and how the go-live will be supported. The plan will include dates, times, resources, prerequisites and status on all items that should be completed. These tasks need to be developed and reviewed with the project core team, MEDITECH, other vendors and individuals involved with the go-live process. There should be a series of tasks outside of the system that will need to be completed leading up to go-live such as, a plan to reduce the number of unbilled accounts or a plan to complete real-time coding and charge entry. It’s important that there are actions taken to prepare for go-live across your entire organization.
- Support: The go-live support structure needs to include a resource schedule, command center logistics, help desk/issue process, issue tracking process and communication approach. The resource schedule needs to identify core team members, super users, physician super users and project leadership. Support will include 24-hour coverage for multiple areas of your organization for a minimum of two weeks. The schedule could be scaled back or increased based on how the go-live is progressing. Additionally, you should have some type of identifier such as a bright-colored shirt to highlight project support team members to end users and physicians. We suggest that you make a space allocated for a command center with an open conference line during the cut-over process. The command center will then be utilized for housing the project team and help desk during the two week go-live process. You will need dedicated resources for answering help desk phones and we encourage you to set up a separate line for physician related issues. Lastly, there needs to be defined process to record, track and manage issues during the go-live process.
- Communication: The communication component leading up to go-live date and during go-live process is essential to the project’s success and should include the entire organization. Communication will focus on the help desk process, support process and emphasizing tasks that need to be completed by departments prior to the go-live date. It’s important to communicate clear direction on how to call in issues, who will be supporting respective areas and how to identify project support team members. Communication during the go-live process will include daily checkpoints for project team members and organization leadership at least twice a day in morning and late afternoon/early evening. These checkpoints will allow an overall project update to be completed along with a review of high priority issues. It’s helpful to regularly distribute 1-2 page tips and tricks to end users and physicians for their education or to highlight processes or system items.
- Monitoring: The go-live phase needs to include active monitoring of go-live tasks and issues such as processes, adherence to new system functionality and key data. Tools that could be deployed will include chart audits and a review of daily revenue. It is important to ensure that the new system is being used and that your organization’s operations aren’t negatively impacted. The monitoring component continues at a minimum through the first month.
If you are considering implementing a new system or upgrading your current MEDITECH environment, our team would be happy to provide specific insight depending on your needs and answer any questions you might have. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at (855) 276-9112. We encourage you to subscribe to our blog to catch more insight on the remaining phases in this series on implementation.
About The Author:
Craig McCollum is AVP of Professional Services at Parallon Technology Solutions. In this role, he is responsible for implementation services and project delivery for PTS’ clients. Craig has more than 20 years of healthcare IT and finance experience, including practice leadership, business development, EHR project leadership, EHR implementation and financial management.
Craig is a member of Medical Users Software Exchange (MUSE) and Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS). Craig is MEDITECH READY certified in project management, general financials, supply chain management and human resources planning. He earned a Bachelor of Science from Fresno State University.