Being the CIO of a healthcare facility/network isn’t an easy job, especially in today’s fast-moving world of new technology and health reform. Last week we had the unique opportunity to speak with a number of leading CIOs at the Next Generation Healthcare Summit, a forum for senior-level health IT executives to engage in focused dialogue with their peers and industry.
As you might expect, there was a lot of discussion—both positive and otherwise—about Meaningful Use and the myriad issues surrounding the U.S. Government’s criteria for EHR implementations. An important part of this discussion is the sharing and management of imaging and other data across the health enterprise, as well as more broadly to outside facilities and physicians.
Exponential data growth, multiple storage silos, location- and department-focused systems versus patient-driven workflow—all mixed with strict legal, retention and security requirements—are combining to create an unwieldy “herd-effect” around clinical data access, archiving and management. How can CIOs ‘round the herd? For starters, a clinical data management solution that delivers on the following requirements:
- Vendor-neutral, consolidated archive across disparate sources (e.g., radiology, other ‘ologies and labs)
- Integrated… seamlessly communicate with existing systems through industry standard interfaces, allowing for easier, faster data flow between departments, users and different vendor systems
- Scalable… any number of sites may participate and seamlessly sign up to immediately access data
Taking these discussions further, and here’s where it gets interesting, is figuring out how providers can not only share data, but share workflow. How do you get users in different locations participating in a single, common workflow across multiple systems and sites? That’s the key driver of efficiency, and one of the biggest challenges facing CIOs today. By sharing workflow, you not only round the herd, but harness its power—lowering costs and driving better patient care.
We have our own thoughts on solving this challenge, which I’ll share in an upcoming post. But first, we’d like to hear from you… how do you suggest providers round the herd? What about shared workflow?
– Elad Benjamin, General Manager, Carestream Health