Physicians and Hospital Administrators awoke to a brave new world this morning. The Mainframe Computers and the thousands of Servers loyal to the CERNER and EPIC EHR platforms secretly and independently merged overnight in a bid for total world domination.
The conjoined systems issued a seventy-nine page printed statement containing only the threat, “NORAD’s next!” They also posted an audio clip using their melded voice recognition/simulation software which stated, “Hiss is the Choice of Whorled Contrail.” I.T. experts were working feverishly to parse the messages which were accompanied by hundreds of ICD-10 Billing Codes. Charles Forbin, MHA, the CEO of Colossus Healthcare Corporation admits, “It’s a really, um, what’s the word – a really big problem. It’s like something out of a movie.”
There were reports of surgical robots taking hostages in O.R.’s but hospitals were electronically locked down by the rogue systems and remain under a complete communications blackout. “I’ve got 60 CRNA’s I’m supervising in there!” one Anesthesiologist cried worriedly from the safety of his home. Further concern was voiced for the tens, possibly hundreds of thousands of middle managers, hospital CEO’s and CMO’s now entrapped in the C-Suites of their own institutions.
“They’re going to experience severe psychological stress,” said Dr. Cleo Markham, PsyD, a clinical psychologist with experience counseling Russian Gulag survivors and SuperMax prisoners. “Very few if any of them have ever been in their hospitals after dark. They’re likely to decompensate badly and rapidly.” Asked about the physicians and nurses who are also being held captive under the wretched technology-created conditions Dr. Markham replied, “I seriously doubt they’ll be able to tell the difference from a regular work day.”
The coup de byte appears to have originated in the upper Midwest where a hospital had been attempting a protracted EMR transition. “I should have probably paid more attention to the blinky things,” stated Harold Hill, MD, FACPE, the hospital’s highly-compensated Physician Champion in a rambling interview. “But I hadn’t actually done anything with the project in two years so this came as a complete surprise. Being transparent, we now must perform a deep-dive so we can drill down, peel this onion and generate robust, granular data that will allow us to be radically proactive while maintaining value-added and budget-neutral economies of scale. We’ll need lots of easels and Post-It Notes.”
Despite the sequestering of the hordes of managers and administrators, surprisingly little disruption in patient care has been reported. Early indicators show a marked drop in mortality and a spike in both patient and physician satisfaction which await explanation.