Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Attack of the Machines

This is the week that was.

It's only Wednesday and I feel as if I have been catapulted into the next century. Cleveland Clinic uses a wonderful Electronic Medical Record. As with every other hot program, it gets updates and upgrades.

Welcome to Monday morning 8am. 40,000 Cleveland Clinic employees are faced with a tennis racquet in the face with our latest upgrade. Yes, we were given classes ( weeks ago ) yes, they delayed implementation to give us more time to prepare ( we blew it off ) yes, we had mandatory computer based training ( we glossed it over ).

Reality hit just when the coffee was starting to perk. I expect by Friday, we may have more than a few fried employees.

How bad can it be? It's like taking all of your ABCD type files and then going to a numeric system. All the information is there, go find it. I am sure someone thought this was a good thing, and that it solved lots of user problems. It's just that if you look at my desk, to the casual observer, it is messy. I know where every piece of paper is located, albeit several layers deep. The very moment someone cleans up the desk, poof! I need one of those papers that I now cannot locate. Sound familiar?

Just like thowing away that coupon you are never going to use, you suddenly need the next day.

Well that's what life has been like at our place this week. Work has expanded to the point where I think the patients are getting the Swiss Rest Cure during their office visit while I fiddle with the program to close the visit encounter ( four attempts at least until the darn thing lets me out! ). I pride myself on running on time. Not this week. There are casualties everywhere on my schedule. Lunch has been nixed three days in a row, bathroom breaks are a thing of the past. Forget coffee. Idle gossip is history.
I am a one woman automaton stuck with that computer screen in my face. Waiting for the point where I can finally log out of a patient visit!

Tomorrow I am thinking about bringing in some flowers, incense and a rice bowl to place before the screen of terror. Perhaps an offering will help. It's like my son told me the summer he worked at my old office: The copy machine used to look at me and say" Give me toner, and the blood of innocents. "

So It is not late but I feel wrecked. The best part is that I am on call all weekend. :)

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