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HCI's August Lineup Is Here — CIOs Wanted!

May 27, 2009
by aguerra
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Cover Story: The Potential of Open Source

For at least a year now, there has been chatter around the HIT industry about the potential of open source software – specifically the VA’s VistA applications which were developed over many years with billions of taxpayer dollars. Some open-source proponents say the disks are the key to healthcare being affordable on Main Street, while others claim the associated costs more than cancel the benefits. Does open-source software have the potential to change the game? If so, what’s the best way for healthcare organizations to harness the power of this not-so-secret code? We speak to CIOs that have decided to move forward with open source, and industry skeptics that say it will never be ready for primetime.

Mark Hagland mhagland@aol.com

Clinical

According to a new report from KLAS, pharmacy software earns the lowest satisfaction ratings of any area they track. Why is that? Though best-of-breed pharmacy systems often deliver an excellent product, is integration with a separate core clinical just too difficult? HCI will talk to CIOs on both sides of the fence, and share success stories from CIOs who have been able to make their best of breed work— along with others who just gave up and turned to their core vendor’s offering.

Daphne Lawrence dlawrence@vendomegrp.com

Financial

Healthcare is one of the few industries that has not embraced CRM (customer relationship management)—yet. But as revenue streams dry up, no potential stone can be left unturned. That’s why some hospitals are looking at the business world and adopting CRM models. HCI will talk to some early adopter CIOs who are moving their hospitals into the retail business model, tracking their customers’ moves, anticipating their needs, and becoming providers outside the four walls of the hospital. We’ll also look at the potential for CRM applications to integrate with the EMR.

Daphne Lawrence dlawrence@vendomegrp.com

Administrative

The recent outbreak of the H1N1 (swine) flu virus — and the media frenzy that accompanied it — took hospitals by storm, as admissions and emergency departments were overcrowded and overburdened with concerned patients. Facilities scrambled to disseminate accurate information about the virus to staff and other employees, patients and their families, and public health organizations. For many organizations, it was an important learning experience. In this article, we’ll speak to hospital executives who were forced to take quick actions such as setting up command centers, and find out what they learned. We’ll also talk to leaders who are implementing systems that will enable hospital staff to quickly gather data, identify trends, and report back to both the patient community and public health agencies in the event of an outbreak.

Kate Gamble kgamble@vendomegrp.com

Wireless

Recent studies indicate that smartphone usage has increased significantly among clinicians, and will continue to climb in the next few years. More than just communication devices, smartphones offer several key functions, including drug references, medical calculators, decision-support tools and EMR applications. Some believe that increased use of smartphones can result in time savings and possibly lead to a rise in EMR adoption. The devices, however, aren’t without their share of issue. This article will examine the challenges faced by CIOs in terms of the differing operating system needs of various smartphones and the requirements in terms of interfacing devices with the hospital IT system. It will also look at the difficulties CIOs face in balancing the needs of both tech-savvy smartphone users and clinicians with different technology preferences.

Kate Gamble kgamble@vendomegrp.com

Imaging

CIOs and their teams are being faced with an accelerating storage problem, as modalities like 64-slice CTs are producing more and bigger radiological studies with exponentially growing image volume. At the same time, physicians of all specialties, both radiologists and referring physicians, are demanding more immediate levels of image access to this data explosion. How are CIOs creating smart strategies around the conflicting dynamics of physician-friendliness, cost, space management, and staffing issues? And where do industry experts see the best storage solutions coming from? We'll find out.

Mark Hagland mhagland@aol.com

Policy

The best of David Rath’s Policy Blog (www.healthcare-informatics.com/david_raths)

Contact David Raths draths@mac.com

Writers may be contacted on these stories prior to June 15.


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aguerra

Anthony Guerra is Editor-in-Chief of Healthcare Informatics. His blog contains story lineups for...