Founded in 1950, Bellarmine University is an independent, private, Catholic university in Louisville, Kentucky. In 2001, Bellarmine added a master’s program for physical therapy and then transitioned to a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) program. Today, that program boasts up to 150 students at a time, and faculty focus on preparing those students for patient-centered practice and lifelong learning.
As a professor for Bellarmine University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program, Dr. Beth Ennis noticed that both students and faculty were constantly frustrated by the school’s server-based EMR system. While students struggled to effectively use the software, professors were dissatisfied with the system’s functionality, particularly its lack of emphasis on detailed, quality documentation. But it wasn’t just the students and faculty who struggled with the server-based software; the IT department had to constantly download and install updates to the software—on every single computer using the EMR—which is quite a cumbersome task. In short, everyone needed a simpler solution. Furthermore, Bellarmine needed an EMR flexible enough for use in both the classroom and the school’s pro-bono clinic.
Dr. Ennis had been using WebPT in her private practice for little over a year when she heard about WebPT EDU, a version of WebPT made specifically for educational institutions. She and other faculty members in the DPT program at Bellarmine decided to make the switch from the server-based system to WebPT EDU at the start of the 2011 academic year. They knew that in addition to exposing students to a real-world, PT-specific EMR system, implementing WebPT’s web-based platform would afford them and their students flexible access with no IT involvement. Furthermore, Dr. Ennis and her students were able to use WebPT in their pro-bono clinic.
“It’s nice to have an EMR system that’s easy to use, doesn’t require a lot of equipment, and allows us to introduce students to real-world documentation.”
Beth Ennis PT, EdD, PCS, ATP
In short, the Bellarmine University team appreciated the fact that WebPT required no upgrades for the IT department to install and manage. Additionally, the system was user-friendly for both students and faculty—and allowed for anywhere, anytime use. Beyond providing a practical learning application in both classroom and pro-bono clinic settings, WebPT also gave students real-world EMR experience to prepare them for work after graduation.