updated 3/1/2011 8:46:49 AM ET 2011-03-01T13:46:49

KANSAS CITY, Mo., March 1, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- In what could eventually change the way vital information is gathered and shared throughout the post-acute, community-based care industry in the United States, Cerner Corporation (Nasdaq:CERN) today announced that Bethesda Health Group, a leading senior care and services organization in St. Louis, Mo.,has begun utilizing Cerner's solution for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs). Bethesda was selected to serve as one of Cerner's development partners due to the breadth of their post-acute continuum and longstanding reputation for quality senior care and services.

Realizing the growing need for healthcare information technology (HIT) in long-term care environments, this conversion marks the company's initial deployment of the Cerner BeyondNow® software architecture, on which Cerner's SNF solution is built, into a skilled nursing facility.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 12 million Americans over the age of 65 will require long-term care by 2020, up from nine million in 2008. Residents in SNFs often have complex medical requirements or limited ability to communicate care needs, creating a difficult and cumbersome environment for providers charged with their care. The Cerner BeyondNow architecture enables providers to coordinate and manage care across the post-acute continuum, including long-term, home health, private duty and hospice.

At the core of Cerner's solution is a person-centric, integrated electronic health record (EHR), which serves as the single source of truth for resident health information. The EHR and associated resident care plan are fully integrated into the federal MDS 3.0 assessments that drive revenue cycle management and quality reporting systems. This system empowers providers to improve care by increasing safety, while enhancing operational efficiency by holistically managing the clinical and logistical needs of the resident.

"Providing superior quality of care to our residents will always be our highest priority," said Larry Hickman, corporate vice president and chief information officer with Bethesda. "Not only will Cerner's innovative solution streamline the ease in which we are able to share information with our hospital and physician partners about their patients – our residents – but will ultimately allow our caregivers to spend less time managing and disseminating data and more time taking care of our residents."

"We are very excited to be 'the first' to begin using a system that we believe will prove to be an industry–changing solution in the area of senior care data management," Hickman added.

Two Bethesda facilities are currently utilizing Cerner® solutions, with plans to expand to the other seven facilities. The first two facilities are utilizing Cerner to handle operations, from back-office functions to resident care encounters. This includes:

  • A single, integrated EHR for residents
  • Development and tracking of resident care plans
  • MDS 3.0 assessment tools for scheduling, completing and submitting MDS reports
  • Revenue cycle management for billing/accounts receivable, that supports unique skilled nursing facility capabilities for Medicare 100-day tracking and therapy minutes tracking for Medicare Part A and Part B
  • Support for facility operations through complete census and bed management, dining logistics and referral processes

Later this year, Bethesda will begin utilizing Cerner's solution for home health, private duty and hospice care, providing a fully integrated system for managing their business and a single EHR for their residents. Utilizing these solutions will position Bethesda to easily exchange health information with physician's offices and hospitals, empowering better coordination of resident care and allowing the continuum of post-acute care to connect with acute care environments.

About Cerner

Cerner is transforming healthcare by eliminating error, variance and waste for healthcare providers and consumers around the world. Cerner® solutions optimize processes for healthcare organizations ranging in size from single-doctor practices, to health systems, to entire countries, for the pharmaceutical and medical device industries, employer health and wellness services industry and for the healthcare commerce system. These solutions are licensed by approximately 9,000 facilities around the world, including more than 2,600 hospitals; 3,500 physician practices covering more than 30,000 physicians; 500 ambulatory facilities, such as laboratories, ambulatory centers, cardiac facilities, radiology clinics and surgery centers; 800 home health facilities; and 1,600 retail pharmacies. The trademarks, service marks and logos (collectively, the "Marks") set forth herein are owned by Cerner Corporation and/or its subsidiaries in the United States and certain other countries throughout the world. Nasdaq: CERN. For more information about Cerner, please visit www.cerner.com , Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.

About Bethesda Health Group

Bethesda Health Group is a non-profit, non-denominational senior care and services organization that has been caring for St. Louis seniors since 1889. Bethesda is comprised of three dedicated skilled nursing communities, each of which is accredited by the nationally renowned Joint Commission; five independent senior living communities, and one community with independent, assisted and skilled nursing under its roof. Bethesda also provides Medicare A rehab care as well as outpatient therapy services; Home Health, Private Duty, Hospice Care, Adult Day Care and Respite Care services. Bethesda has been named one of the Greater St. Louis Top 50 Businesses Shaping Our Future each of the last three years (and four of the last five years). In April, Bethesda will open a new campus, Charless Village, which will include independent and assisted living, skilled nursing, rehab and therapy, and adult day care.

This release contains forward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. It is important to note that the Company's performance, and actual results, financial condition or business could differ materially from those expressed in such forward-looking statements. The words "could", "will" and "plan" or the negative of these words, variations thereof or similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to: the possibility of product-related liabilities; potential claims for system errors and warranties; the possibility of interruption at our data centers or client support facilities; our proprietary technology may be subject to claims for infringement or misappropriation of intellectual property rights of others, or may be infringed or misappropriated by others; risks associated with our recruitment and retention of key personnel; risks related to our dependence on third party suppliers; changing political, economic and regulatory influences; government regulation; significant competition and market changes; and, failure of the parties to achieve the intended benefits. Additional discussion of these and other factors affecting the Company's business is contained in the Company's periodic filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The Company undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect changed assumptions, the occurrence of unanticipated events or changes in future operating results, financial condition or business over time.

CONTACT: Cerner Media Contact:
         Matt Dunn
         (816) 446-1292
         matt.dunn@cerner.com
         Cerner Investors Contact:
         Allan Kells
         (816) 201-2445
         akells@cerner.com

         Bethesda Media Contact: 
         Jeff Waldman
         (314) 800-1908
         jrwaldman@bethesdahealth.org

© Copyright 2012, GlobeNewswire, Inc. All Rights Reserved

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