BIDMC's Emergency Department "dashboard" streamlines communications in ED's nationwide.
The emergency department of a major hospital is among the busiest places in medicine, a near-constant swirl of activity in which tens of thousands of patients pass through the doors each year. This results in near-countless pieces of information for staff to manage -- which makes it all the more surprising that an estimated 70 percent of ERs in the U.S. still rely on old-fashioned whiteboards to monitor this tremendous influx of information. In 2006, Forerun Systems, Inc. was cofounded by BIDMC Emergency Department Chairman Richard Wolfe, MD, with the goal of marketing the ED Dashboard, an electronic system that brings ED communications in line with today’s fast-paced world. Pioneered by Wolfe, together with BIDMC’s Chief Information Officer John Halamka, MD, and Larry Nathanson, MD, Director of Emergency Medical Informatics, the Dashboard’s multiple functions work like an air-traffic control operation, alerting caregivers to patients’ locations, medications, lab work and imaging tests. BIDMC’s Technology Ventures Office catalyzed the formation of Forerun Systems and manages its unique relationship with BIDMC’s ED. Today, the popular product is streamlining communications in the EDs of hospitals and medical centers nationwide.