CHA is First Healthcare System to Integrate Electronic Medical Record with Google Meet


Telehealth has been a critical strategy for CHA to maintain access for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, and it will remain an important way to provide care moving forward. CHA launched telehealth services in March 2020, rapidly implementing state-of-the-art telehealth across its network to support medical and behavioral health care, ensure patient/staff safety and improve patient experience.

The conversion required innovation and support from CHA’s partners. CHA is the first healthcare system in the nation to integrate the Epic electronic health record with Google Meet, with assistance from cloud partner Maven Wave. This enables CHA to provide the same patient experience of connecting with a care team for a visit virtually while ensuring a safe and secure appointment.

"Google Meet's functionality, flexibility and security were critical in supporting our rapid and inspiring conversion to a completely different model of care during the COVID-19 pandemic," said Brian Herrick, MD, chief information officer of Cambridge Health Alliance. "Our patients have appreciated the ability to easily connect with their care teams virtually and experience a genuine alternative to an in-person visit, while the integration to our electronic medical record saves our providers time and ensures continuity of care."

With Google Meet, patients have the ability to provide access to family members or interpreters. CHA is monitoring telehealth equity issues for its highly diverse patient population, educating patients about telehealth technology and ensuring multilingual interpreters are available as needed.

CHA’s transformation to telehealth has been successful to date, with its Primary Care and Outpatient Psychiatry departments transforming their delivery models to serve patients. From March-June 2020, CHA was able to sustain 65-70 percent of its projected service volume in Primary Care and 90 percent of its volume in Psychiatry, with the majority of visits as telehealth.

CHA intends to continue developing telehealth capabilities in novel ways to promote health and effectively manage chronic conditions.