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Building Things

April 22, 2010
by root
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There are many ways to build things. When it comes to new healthcare construction, it is becoming imminently clearer by the day that facility planning now also means information technology planning, particularly when it comes to the new digital hospitals being created. This month's cover story package looks at several different aspects of this phenomenon.

Among other elements in the mix, hospital and health system CIO are becoming more involved than ever before, and more involved at earlier stages than ever before, in facility planning. It only makes sense: the degree to which new hospital facilities and new wings or buildings will be functionally successful will depend partly on the degree to which IT infrastructure, hardware, and other elements are successfully put in place. Not surprisingly, leaders at hospital organizations all across the country are changing the ways in which they do facility planning in order to accommodate the new healthcare. Our cover story package on the new facility planning/IT planning link begins on page 12.

There are other ways of building things in healthcare as well. When it comes to optimizing pediatric care, clinician, executive and IT leaders at one of the nation's leading children's hospitals are leveraging innovative forms of information technology to improve such process areas as medication administration, growth chart analysis, and clinical documentation (page 24).

Associations and collaboratives can build things, too. One major national healthcare alliance is sponsoring a nationwide collaborative on meaningful use, with CIOs from all over the U.S. working together to address some of the most vexing challenges around healthcare IT stimulus funding (page 38). And as the nation's main CMIO association prepares for its annual symposium, one of the association's leaders discusses what kinds of efforts he and his colleagues will need to build in the next few years in order to achieve meaningful use and meet a range of broad strategic objectives.

Healthcare Informatics 2010 May;27(5):6