By now you have probably heard about MPages™ and you may be asking yourself: What exactly is an MPage™ and why would we need one?
Why MPages™? Clinicians Are Seeing Benefits
Physicians have been key and primary users of MPages™. With a single click they can get all the information they find crucial to a patient without searching all over the chart. The reduced number of clicks have been very dramatic for the physicians, accelerating their workflow, providing them instant access to clinical information and generally improving their acceptance of the Cerner Millennium® clinical applications.
Nurses are also seeing the benefits with uses like “nursing shift review”; where an MPage™ view has far more complete information available and as a result, makes the process more timely and efficient.
What is an MPage™? Vehicle to Get From Point A to Point B
Asking, “What is an MPage™?” is a lot like asking, “What is an automobile?” At the simplest level, an automobile is a device to get you from point A to point B. But there are many types of automobiles such as sports cars, family cars, off road vehicles, emergency vehicles, economy cars, hybrid cars…the list goes on and on. MPages™ are a lot like cars; different cars are used for different reasons. You may want a car that just gets 300 miles per gallon; it won’t be anything like a Suburban, but it’s still a car.
MPages™ have many uses, but like a car, they have a basic function: to get data from point A (the DB) to point B (the user). MPages™ have some distinct advantages over CCL in their ability to do this simple task. They add HTML formatting to improve the user’s visual experience and usability as well as Java Script to increase their ability to allow users to interact with that data in ways that we simply can’t do with plain CCL.
Prior to MPages™, customers were limited to rich text formatting for viewing information within PowerChart®. For example, Smart Templates and Gen Views are very limited in their formatting options. Explorer Menu offers more format options – but that requires going outside of PowerChart® and re-selecting your patient. So the primary benefit of MPages™ is being able to format in columns and embed HTML for links to other PowerChart® functionality, such as problem lists. Over time it is expected to become more and more interactive.
Bedrock® supported MPages™ are expected to be very popular with customers as they do not require a CCL programmer to implement or modify. A wizard walks you through format options and data options. If you find that you want to modify the data that is displayed, it is very simple to select or deselect. Format options are more limited than when doing a custom MPage™, but the ease of creation and maintenance more than makes up for it. There are currently only a few Bedrock® MPages™ (ED, Ambulatory, and Lighthouse) but more are expected.
MPages™ Currently Come in Two Options:
Cerner Provided Content
- Prebuilt MPages™ are designed for specific needs. For example, Cerner® has created MPages™ for managing chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes and others. This content is directed to the ambulatory setting and gives physicians a clear view of events, lab tests and medications related to the patients condition. Algorithms are included as part of the content. In the case of chronic condition management, the algorithms were developed in partnership with customers.
- Customization options are limited. The tools to customize these types of MPages™ vary depending on the content. Some, for example, can be edited and customized using the wizard in Bedrock® tools. This is a nice feature and makes it easier to install MPages™, but it lacks some granularity that can be obtained by other methods. Another way to customize the MPages™ is by modifying the content in spreadsheet form. This allows for more customization, but it is a more complicated way to make changes. And finally, for some, like the chronic condition management content, the only way to customize these is via a complicated process editing what Cerner® calls a DAT file. There is a help file in the form of a spreadsheet that gives instructions on how to manipulate the DAT file and further instructions on uCern™ on how to import it, and how to set preferences for them.
- Content is supported by Cerner® and delivered via packages. Once the MPage™ is "normalized" or mapped and modified to your environment, updated content will flow seamlessly. This type of content is included in many of the modules that customers purchase. You may have access to these depending on the modules you have installed.
- These MPages™ are fully customizable and can be developed at the customers’ own pace instead of waiting on Cerner® for development
- These pages require access to advanced CCL and HTML developers.
- There will be limited support by Cerner® as you, the customer, are taking more responsibility for development.
Things to consider before going down this path include;
- MPages™ can be as complex or as simple as you want them to be. Options range from traditional interactive CCL reports, to single HTML pages used for simple data viewing, to fully interactive web applications.
- Custom MPages™ development should be treated as application development. The full software development life-cycle should be utilized.
What to Expect
Expect to see more and more content from Cerner® targeting the needs of clinicians in both the hospital and the ambulatory settings.
Expect to see more and more PowerChart® functionality in MPages™. This means that there will be a need to maintain the same functions in both PowerChart® and MPages™. Eventually look for a fully web-based version of PowerChart® that is highly customizable, intuitive and clinician friendly.
Expect your clinicians to be enthusiastic about the use and further development of MPages™.
HPG is not sponsored by and/or affiliated with Cerner Corporation®.
MPages and uCern are trademarks and PowerChart, Bedrock, Cerner and Cerner Millennium are registered trademarks of Cerner Corporation and/or its subsidiaries.