Teaching Hospital Berkshire Medical Center Learns the Benefits of MEDITECH’s PDoc


Berkshire Medical Center (Pittsfield, MA) is a quick study when it comes to learning the value of MEDITECH’s Physician Documentation (PDoc). Shortly after going LIVE with the tool, a test group of hospitalists were documenting almost 100 percent of their progress notes in the EHR. Soon, other members of the medical staff — surgeons, specialists, residents, and physician’s assistants — followed suit, mastering PDoc in less than a year.

The results? Berkshire estimates that the annualized transcription savings for their first year LIVE with PDoc will reach almost $250,000. And the medical staff likes it.

“Our physicians are very happy with PDoc. It’s easy to use and overall, the documentation is better,” says Gray Ellrodt, MD, who is chief quality officer and chairman of the department of medicine.

Paper, Past Tense

Before PDoc, residents and teaching faculty at the 260-bed medical center documented on paper, which resulted in substantial “double documentation.” Now, PDoc’s shared documentation capability streamlines the unique workflow of attending physicians and residents.

“PDoc works very well for us as a teaching hospital—we can easily use the EHR to compare the resident’s notes against those of the attending physician,” says Bill DeMarco, MD, medical director of informatics and hospitalist.

A+ in Proficiency

But that’s not the only efficiency improvement at Berkshire. “Leveraging PDoc to allow physicians to meet Meaningful Use requirements and to be prepared for ICD-10 has been enormously helpful,” says David Albert, MD, CMIO.

“And even though we haven’t fully implemented it in every department yet, we’re already seeing an impressive reduction in transcription expenses,” he says.

“We’re able to combine drop-down menus, open text boxes with speech recognition, and point-and-click data fields, making it quick and easy to transition between documentation types. Plus, it’s a real time saver,” says DeMarco.

Syllabus for Success

Albert attributes their success to a combination of factors, including leadership from PDoc Consultant Marianne Deignan, guidance from MEDITECH application specialists, and the proficiency of a great IT staff.

“PDoc enhances communication among providers, and even more importantly, improves compliance with medical records standards,” says Albert. “The cost savings from transcription reduction is the icing on the cake!”

Team Building: Coaching and Strategies

  • PDoc Consultant Marianne Deignan created standard template building blocks; these building blocks allowed for customization by specialty, maximizing efficiency to save time and IT resources.
  • MEDITECH’s Physician Documentation team was excellent. They were quick to respond to our needs and helped guide us as we brought PDoc LIVE for each specialty group.
  • David Albert, MD, CMIO, suggests physician champions attend a training session on template building.
  • Understanding the concepts involved enables physician champions to work more efficiently with the IT team during the template-building process.