Harford Community College has received a $25,000 grant from CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield to support development of an electronic health records system that will bolster training of the institution's nearly 2,200 Nursing and Allied Health students.
The grant for Harford's Emerging Technologies Project -- Electronic Health Records will enable HCC to acquire the high-tech equipment necessary to launch the project across the Allied Health and Nursing curricula and provide state-of-the-art education in a crucial workforce skill for the health care industry.
Harford's adoption of electronic health records technology also places it at the forefront of community college health care education and training in Maryland. Statewide, only Johns Hopkins University, the University of Maryland, the Community College of Baltimore County, and Howard Community College offer instruction in electronic health records and nursing informatics.
CareFirst awarded Harford the grant with an eye toward wider adoption of electronic health records and the positive impact they could have on the safety of patients in the region.
At the check presentation ceremony on April 11, State Senator Barry Glassman said: "Education and training in Electronic Health Records is vital for Maryland's health care workforce. CareFirst's investment in this important project will ensure that instruction at HCC is state-of-the-art."
"We are very grateful to CareFirst for their generous support of this important project," Laura Preston, dean of the Nursing and Allied Health Division at Harford Community College, said in a news release on the April 11 event. "CareFirst's mission to improve health care access and quality throughout the region aligns perfectly with HCC's EHR project, and their support will have a dramatic impact on the quality of patient care provided by our graduates," she added.
"Hospitals, clinics, and doctors' offices are increasingly using electronic health records to manage chronic illnesses, reduce errors in patient care, and improve patient services," Zoann Parker , associate vice president for Continuing Education at HCC said. "Our project builds on a successful pilot of EHR instruction at HCC and promises to help our graduates to be better prepared for today's workplace," she said.
Harford Community College has 2,196 students enrolled in its Nursing and Allied Health degree and certificate programs. The EHR Project, which will be implemented in a phased approach, will impact 450 students in its first year. For information on applying to HCC's nursing and allied health programs, call 443-412-2172.
In its 76th year of service, CareFirst, an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, is a not-for-profit health care company which, through its affiliates and subsidiaries, offers a comprehensive portfolio of health insurance products and administrative services to 3.4 million individuals and groups in Maryland, the District of Columbia and Northern Virginia. In 2012, CareFirst contributed $57 million to community programs designed to increase the accessibility, affordability, safety and quality of health care throughout its market areas.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun