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CIO Chops

October 1, 2007
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Being a CIO in today's environment of massive IT implementations takes focus, communication and savvy — and that's just the beginning. In our cover story, "Quest to be the Best," (page 32) HCI talks with top CIOs across the country (along with industry experts) to get a clear picture of the best practices for running a top-tier IT shop. Through these interviews, a picture emerges of an industry, and its leadership. Find out their secrets to governance, selection, adoption, staffing and budget, among other issues — and how you can benefit from lessons learned.

When it comes to patient information, the importance of maintaining proper data security can never be overestimated. Hospitals spend millions of dollars on firewalls, intrusion detection, anti-virus, and vulnerability applications, all trying to keep people out of their system. But often, the biggest threats come from within. In "Inside Job," (page 50) find out about some of the major security threats to hospitals, and how to make sure they don't happen to you.

The struggle to achieve efficient patient flow remains a pervasive one among hospitals nationwide. In an effort to expedite bed turnover and patient throughput, a group of hospitals have implemented solutions that address the issues of bed tracking, patient tracking and surgery scheduling. Read "A Steady Flow," (page 18) to see the challenges and rewards of each system — and how to protect against a point of failure.

For most patients, a busy emergency room is probably the worst place to remember what medications they're taking. But since Jan. 1, 2006, when The Joint Commission's new patient safety initiative was announced, hospitals risk losing accreditation if they don't use some form of medication reconciliation. In "Bringing the Outside In," (page 10) see how one health system partnered up on a new IT solution for medication reconciliation — and why the system is different from most.

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