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Top Tech Trends 2010

January 29, 2010
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Now, more than ever, healthcare professionals need to stay on top of IT trends. HCI asked our readers to vote for the trends that will most significantly impact healthcare CIOs in the coming year. In Top Tech Trends 2010, page 10, we highlight areas our readers feel will be important as they try to move their organizations ever further into the digital age. It's a roadmap produced after much deliberation and research - and a desktop companion for the entire year.

The ARRA-HITECH Act has made CPOE a household word (well, almost). But if docs won't use it, hospitals will never make the grade. Some organizations are layering on third party applications to help, but all need to take this seriously. It's not just the push to obtain federal funding under HITECH that's driving a burst of CPOE implementation of late; it's the realization on the part of CIOs and other organizational leaders that it truly is foundational for progress in improving care quality and efficiency. Read CPOE, page 16, to see how the technology is being transformed into a vital tool in eliminating variation in care, and in spurring data analysis for quality and patient safety improvement going forward. The challenge, as many hundreds of hospitals move towards CPOE in order to qualify for meaningful use under HITECH: can they all implement successfully?

However, with its focus on clinical IT implementations such as EMR and CPOE, HITECH has forced every other IT need in hospitals to the back burner. This means overdue upgrades to financial systems and adoption of clear-ROI projects like asset tracking on expensive biomedical equipment are no longer a top priority. Many say hospital-IPA integration is key. In HITECH, page 39, we'll examine what will happen once work on CPOE, quality reporting and data sharing are on track, and how you can expect IT leaders to refocus their attention to topics such as clinical-financial integration, business intelligence, and asset tracking. Find out why savvy CIOs are pushing their organizations to integrate with the largest IPAs in the area, recognizing that electronic interconnectivity is a guaranteed way to solidify an important revenue-generating relationship.

Healthcare Informatics 2010 February;27(2):8