This past September, providers at NorthBay Healthcare in Fairfield, Calif., found themselves facing dual emergencies: responding to the demands of COVID-19, while also dealing with an influx of patients who had been evacuated from a nearby hospital due to wildfires. The saving grace was having the ability to access patients’ external health records through their connection to the CommonWell Health Alliance health data exchange network.

CommonWell enables providers using various, typically disparate, electronic health record technologies to securely access patient records across tens of thousands of care venues nationwide. Cerner is a founding member of CommonWell.

Last month, Julie Crouse, administration coordinator at NorthBay, shared how connecting technology and data across the continuum can help health organizations continue to provide high-quality care especially in times of extreme crisis.

Just a couple highlights from her discussion:

“To have health information travel with the patient so that care can be rendered with knowledge is absolutely invaluable.”

“[CommonWell Services are] a wonderful functionality that can really enhance a patient’s care wherever they go. I just wish more people were signed up to participate so that every patient’s health information was there.”

Listen to the full interview on the Cerner Podcast.