Grays Harbor Community Hospital and the Harbor Medical Group have experienced problems with their computer systems that are severe enough that the hospital has entered a “downtime protocol” which means staff are required to use paper documents for some patients.
The hospital is open and safely offering its usual services, said Nancee Long, the hospital’s director of marketing and public relations. The problems started on Saturday and are expected to be resolved within a week, Long said.
“The hospital remains open for business and will continue to treat patients with the same level of care and professionalism,” Long wrote. “If you have any questions regarding your care or an upcoming appointment, please contact the office of the provider you are associated with. “
There are two separate electronic medical record systems for the hospital and for Harbor Medical Group’s specialty clinics and rural health clinics, all of which are operated by Grays Harbor Public Hospital District 2. The electronic medical records system at Harbor Medical Group. hospital, Meditech, is fully operational but is not communicating with other systems. As an example, Long said if a patient has blood work done, the results should be shared with the doctor.
Long said the clinics’ electronic registration system was affected and required them to use a paper documentation method. No employees have been fired home due to IT issues, Long said.
“Some of the schedules are not available so they accept patients as they come and schedule patients with a paper process,” she wrote, adding that appointments can still be made. via the paper-based process in the clinics, and that all hospital outpatient surgeries are still scheduled.
In order to treat patients safely, Long wrote that some patients may be asked to complete paperwork regarding their medical history and bring medication to their visit.
“It’s not a deterrent to patient care,” Long wrote. “Offices have been running without a computer for years now. It would be more problematic not to see patients who need care. “
The hospital is working with its information technology provider to resolve the issue, Long noted.