Todd Cozzens, CEO, president and vice chairman of Picis Inc., does not mince words. “Healthcare it is not just about promising something,” he says, “but delivering.”
Picis is focused on automating three of the most lucrative, albeit precarious, spaces in healthcare: emergency departments (ED), operating rooms (OR), and intensive care units (ICU).
“These are where the costs are the greatest, where the care process is the most complex, where the patients are the sickest,” Cozzens says, “and quite frankly, where the technology to automate these areas has been the most lacking and the most behind simply because of the complexity of the technology required to meet the needs.”
Cozzens, who co-founded Picis in 1995, attributes his organization's success in tackling automation to coupling engineers with caregivers. In fact, currently 15 percent of the company's employees are ED, OR or ICU nurses and physicians, many of whom still practice part time.
According to Cozzens, the ED is the hospital entry point for more than 60 percent of patient admissions, and it is the fastest growing part of the hospital, while the OR contributes to more than one-third of hospital profits.
Cozzens says critical care used to be the black hole of the hospital, where things were lost, but things are changing.
“What you see now is more and more critical care beds expanding throughout the hospital,” he says. “Everyone talks about the effects of the aging population. Nowhere is this more prominent than in these high acuity areas. This is where the aging population spends the last years of their lives.”
In 2006, the company saw growth in its emergency department system, the roll out of CareSuite Extellingence OR version 3.0, and signings both in the United States and abroad, which Cozzens attributes to what he calls “reference-ability,” or, site visits, demonstrated ROI and journal articles.
“PowerPoint only gets you so far in healthcare,” he says. “At the end of the day, you've got to have proof.” And with medical centers using its products such as the University of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, the University of Vienna in Austria, the Rochester, Minn.-based Mayo Clinic and Manhattan-based New York Presbyterian Hospital, Picis appears to have just that.
As to the future, Cozzens says Picis will continue its attention to delivery and execution.
“Hospitals are becoming big high-acuity centers, so we don't have to do too much to change what we are doing, because the profile of the hospital is kind of coming toward what we are doing, versus us having to stretch and change direction to where the hospital is going,” he says. “There were 16 million ED visits in the country last year, and we automated about 25 percent of them.”
Cozzens says the people at Picis are focused on making sure the company continues to be a leader in the high-acuity space. And as Cozzens says, “Our space is becoming the space.”