El Camino Hospital

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Beginning in 1964, Lockheed Martin established a group to work on medical information solutions. Lockheed Martin chose El Camino hospital, which coincidentally happened to be near the Sunnyvale development site, as its partner and beta test site. El Camino Hospital had an early leadership role in the application of computers to health care issues, likely because of its geographic position in the heart of Silicon Valley.

In 1971, financial pressures compelled Lockheed to sell its HIS group to Technicon Data Systems (TDS). In spite of the change of hands, El Camino decided to continue with the implementation. As a result in 1973, El Camino went live with what is touted as the first computerized physician order entry (CPOE) system. [1] [2]

El Camino Hospital remains well known, not only for its pioneering efforts in CPOE, but also as the initial customer for Eclipsys, one of the more established EMR vendors today. Eclipsys has its roots as the former TDS, but the company changed hands several times before stabilizing as Eclipsys. [3]

El Camino Hospital also attracted popular but unwanted attention during a project to modernize its systems earlier this decade. Given the history of the hospital as a well-known leader in the use of technology, it raised eyebrows when its effort to migrate from its mainframe system to the more modern version of Eclipsys had to be postponed due to insufficient preparation of the professional staff. Many of the physicians were unhappy with the new system and were resistant to change. The migration was completed after a delay of approximately a half year. [4]


  1. Rootenberg, J. D. (June 2004). Waiting for e-Medicine (p. 51). Biotechnology: Essays from the Heartland. Bay Area Science and Innovation Consortium and California Institute for Quantitative Biomedical Research. http://qb3.org/pdfs/biotech1.pdf
  2. Santosus, M. (July 26, 2007). El Camino Hospital. HealthcareDigital. http://www.healthcare-digital.com/El-Camino-Hospital_1320.aspx
  3. May, T. (April 5, 2002). El Camino wants paperless hospital. Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal. http://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/stories/2002/04/08/story7.html
  4. HIStalk (January 21, 2008). HIStalk interviews Mark Zielazinski, CIO of Children's Hospital of Central California http://histalk2.com/2008/01/21/histalk-interviews-mark-zielazinski-cio-of-childrens-hospital-of-central-california/