In September, the entire health center converted to a new electronic health record called EPIC. The health center and clinics are now able to share the same medical records for patients. These records are also part of the same system used by the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.
A physical merger in the clinic, in the way of a remodel, is currently under construction. A common registration desk and waiting room is nearing completion. Although the staff is already working together as a team, this will physically unite the clinic. The most common theme that Ryan Ford, director of clinics, hears from the staff is that they are amazed that they are more alike than they are different. Patients are able to see the same providers that were in their clinic as before. The difference is the clinics now have 19 providers between JCHC Clinic and the JCHC Walk-In Clinic to accommodate patients’ needs.
Health center CEO Bryan Hunger remarked, “The merger of Medical Arts and Fairfield Clinic strengthens our health systems foundation, which is the primary care providers. It increases access to care for patients, unites our medical group, improves our chances of physician recruitment, allows for the sharing of resources, and positions JCHC to meet population health challenges.”
Ford said, “The reason for the change is to better serve our community and their health care needs and to strengthen JCHC’s mission, which is: To optimize the health and well-being of the people and communities we serve by providing safe, high quality, compassionate services.”