Northern Light Health optimizes with Oracle Ambulatory Surgery Center

One Maine health system turns to Oracle Health to holistically support outpatient surgery clinicians and patients by streamlining workflows.


In the surgery center, our goal is to decrease the amount of time patients are under our care while still providing them with high-quality service. We want patients to receive the safest and most efficient care available while they're with us.

Eva DavidsonDirector of Surgical Services, Northern Light Health

In December of 2021, Northern Light Health opened its Portland, Maine, outpatient surgery center to offer surgical, diagnostic, and preventative procedures—without requiring a hospital stay. However, the hospital struggled with a documentation process that wasn't compatible with its plans to expand ambulatory services.

“We knew that we needed to choose the right documentation solution to support our growth strategy,” says Lori Dunivan, vice president and chief nursing informatics officer at Northern Light Health. “Before implementing ASC, we used inpatient surgery documentation, which did not align to our ambulatory needs. It was inefficient because it wasn’t applicable to an ambulatory setting. We knew that we needed to pivot to support a fast-paced, high-volume ambulatory venue.”

Northern Light chose Oracle Health Ambulatory Surgery Center (ASC) for its unique and specific functionalities, each designed to support outpatient surgery patients and staff by streamlining workflows. By integrating surgical, anesthesia, and revenue cycle solutions onto a single platform, the hospital gained a powerful system that helped simplify the management of an ambulatory surgery center and reduced documentation burden.

After implementing ASC, nurses at Northern Light Health reduced their active time documenting in flowsheets by 41% and in forms by 9%, a combined 24% decrease in time documenting in forms and flowsheets per encounter. Additionally, the number of clicks while documenting within flowsheets dropped by 42% and within forms by 19%, which was a combined 33% decrease in clicks per patient encounter. The result was optimized patient encounters with an increase in the quality of patient-to-nurse time, including more focus on aftercare.1

We’ve had a decrease in the amount of documentation that we have to do in the preoperative phase. This means we're able to start our post-operative education with the patient when they're still awake and clear-minded. It has really helped improve care for those patients postoperatively.

Eva DavidsonDirector of Surgical Services, Northern Light Health

Physicians, surgeons, and frontline workers also rely on having the right tools and documentation to support their clinical process. This not only supported clinical accuracy by helping reduce manual errors, but streamlined workflows. As a critical component of any surgery, anesthesia documentation is key to supporting successful surgeries and positive outcomes.

Also, as patients transitioned out of post-operative care and prepared to be discharged, care teams no longer had to wait for a paper record and instead could easily access documentation— supporting consistent, informed care at every stage.

1 Comparing active time pre-conversion, August 1, 2022, through October 30, 2022 covering 677 patient encounters for the Oracle Health IView solution and 718 patient encounters for the Oracle Health PowerForm solution, against active time post-conversion, October 31, 2022 through April 30, 2023, covering 1656 patient encounters for the Oracle Health IView solution and 1662 patient encounters for Oracle Health PowerForms solution.  Data included only those personnel in a Nurse Surgical p1 position handling ASC and Periop flowsheets using the Oracle Health IView solution and preadmission assessment, admission history, ASC, plan of care, and preprocedure checklist forms using the Oracle Health PowerForms solution.

Published:April 17, 2024