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Health_Blog_GradyHospital-06This is part two of a two-part blog series covering the highlights from my conversation with Sean O’Connor, Executive Director of Information Services at Grady Health System. In part one, I covered how Grady is using a Microsoft Identity Manager (MIM) solution that works with its PeopleSoft human resources (HR) system and Epic EMR to improve access control and increase efficiency. As the conversation with Sean continued, I got the chance to ask him about the benefits Grady is experiencing since implementing its MIM solution.

To me, the beauty of what you’ve done is that you’ve elevated identity management above the application level. Your MIM solution uses your HR system as the source of truth to enable appropriate access for your Epic EMR. So how do you deal with not only new hires, but termination, name changes, and other processes like that?
All of the above has been automated with MIM, which syncs twice daily with our PeopleSoft HR system. If someone changes their name or is terminated in our HR system, we have MIM workflows designed around all of that. So the appropriate access changes trickle down to Epic and other systems in a timely manner. That’s a huge win for us because there are a lot of changes, promotions, transfers, people getting married, you name it, and with MIM, we’ve automated all of it.

How do you handle identity management for providers who are not full-time or temporary employees of the hospital?
We’re working on that right now – it’s the next phase of our identity management automation. We plan to use the same MIM workflows that we use for employees. But instead of our HR system being the source of truth for a person’s role and department to determine appropriate access to Epic, the physician credentialing system will be the source of truth for that information.

Have you quantified your time savings since you’ve implemented the MIM solution?
Prior to using MIM, new account creations took two full days per week—now they only take about an hour per week. Account terminations used to take 10 hours per week—now they take only four hours per week. And account modifications used to take four hours per week—now they only take one hour per week. So when we added everything together, we figured we’re saving about 1250 hours per year. Now, instead of winding the watch, we can keep the time. In other words, the hours that we were spending just trying to keep up with identity management tasks, we can now spend furthering strategic IT initiatives.

How would you sum up the benefits you’ve experienced since automating identity management at Grady?
Efficiency, user satisfaction, compliance, and standardization—those are the four major benefits our MIM solution has afforded us.

If you’d like to learn more about how Grady Health System is using a MIM solution to achieve the above benefits, please reach out via email, Facebook, or Twitter. And please let us know if you have any questions or feedback.