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Daniel Drawbaugh

UPMC Media Relations

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Named One of 100 Most Wired Hospitals in the United States for Fifth Consecutive Year

PITTSBURGH, July 16, 2003 For the fifth year in a row, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) has been named one of the 100 Most Wired hospitals and health systems in the United States, according to the 2003 Most Wired Survey and Benchmarking Study, by Hospitals & Health Networks, the journal of the American Hospital Association.

UPMC is one of only 15 organizations nationwide that have made the list for all five years of the awards that recognize "technically savvy" hospitals, placing it in an elite group of hospitals that share that distinction. It is the only institution in the region to achieve this distinction.

UPMC also represents a minority of larger hospitals and health systems with more than 500 beds that made the list (10.9 percent). Most of the organizations recognized are non-teaching hospitals (67.6 percent); UPMC is included in the 32.4 percent of the teaching hospitals named Most Wired.

The designation is based on a survey developed in cooperation with McKesson Information Solutions, Qwest Communications International and the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society. The survey and benchmarking study measures the nation's health care systems on their use of Internet technologies to connect with patients, physicians, payors, health plans and employees.

UPMC has made a substantial financial commitment toward an ambitious information technology initiative to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of patient care, and reduce medical errors and duplication of services. The centerpiece of the project is the development of a system-wide electronic health record. The initiative also involves the development and system-wide deployment of technologies that impact access to care, such as scheduling of appointments, registration for clinical services, insurance eligibility management; business practices, including billing, claims and contract management; and resource planning, such as purchasing, materials management and payroll.

"UPMC is pioneering numerous information technologies with advanced clinical decision support capabilities that are increasing the quality of health care and improving how patients interact with the health system," said Dan Drawbaugh, chief information officer of UPMC. "The goal is to develop technology in order to deliver health care information to providers and consumers through a linked, multifaceted information delivery and decision support system that will meet the needs of our hospitals, clinics, physician practices, and most importantly, our patients."

UPMC is one of the nation's largest not-for-profit health care systems and the leading integrated delivery network in western Pennsylvania. UPMC operates a network of 19 tertiary, specialty and community hospitals with a total of over 4,000 licensed beds. With over 150,000 inpatient admissions, 350,000 emergency visits and 115,000 total surgeries annually, UPMC has been recognized as one of the nation's top health care systems four years in a row by US News & World Report. This annual survey has acclaimed UPMC programs for excellence in 13 of 17 specialty care areas, including otolaryngology, digestive and respiratory disorders, oncology, pediatrics, psychiatry and gynecology.

The health care system also provides a wide range of health-related services and products, including home health care, health insurance and health care supplies. With over 10,000 physicians on staff and more than 36,000 employees, UPMC provides service to over three million patients annually and is the largest overall employer in western Pennsylvania. The system's health insurance division, UPMC Health Plan, has more than 300,000 subscribers. UPMC is responsible to the region for a total economic impact of $13 million a day or $5 billion annually.

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