Category

Healthcare IT

IoT in Healthcare – Connections Big and Small

By | Healthcare IT, Strategy

The Internet of Things (IoT) is quickly becoming a mainstream term, thanks to the popularity of smartphones, connected home appliances, and wearable trackers like those sold by Fitbit and Jawbone. This post explores the opportunities and watch-outs for IoT adoption in healthcare, specifically for improving patient care and engagement, as well as what can be done to set up an organization for success when formulating an IoT strategy.

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Telehealth – Transforming Healthcare as we Know it

By | Healthcare IT, IT Implementation, Strategy

What is Telehealth? It is one of the fastest growing segments of the healthcare industry, yet it remains elusive and widely misunderstood. Much of the confusion lies in the fact that the technology involved is moving faster than the legislation supporting it, leaving the country with a patchwork set of guidelines and regulations that vary from state to state in regards to how telehealth technology can be used and reimbursed.

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Strategic Planning for Healthcare IT: Part 2

By | Healthcare IT, IT Implementation, Strategy

In the first part of this Strategic Planning for Healthcare IT series I focused on defining a framework and assessing the current state of a healthcare organization’s IT portfolio.  In the second part I will describe the definition of the desired future state, address the identification of gaps between current state and future state, and discuss the definition of the organization’s strategic plan – i.e., roadmap.

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Strategic Planning for Healthcare IT: Part 1

By | Healthcare IT, IT Implementation, Strategy

Strategic planning efforts are challenging, especially in Healthcare IT, given the continuously changing environment.  Because of this, it is all too common for organizations to forgo a strategic planning exercise, maintain (or reduce) current budget levels year over year, and struggle to keep up with the next high priority request.  A significant challenge with this approach is that every request is a high priority and there are limited hours, resources, and dollars available to meet those requests.  All too often, stakeholders become discouraged and only focus on the fact that their high priority request is not getting done.

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Best Practices for a Meaningful Information Security Assessment (Part 2)

By | Healthcare IT, Information Security, Project Management

In the first part of this series I focused on the best practices of understanding the intent of the assessment, the value that a dedicated project manager will add to the effort, and the importance of selecting the right firm.  In the second part I will focus on the best practices of selecting the right framework, preparation of materials, and presentation of materials.  These efforts are discussed separately however they are tightly coupled and rely heavily on good communication. 

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Best Practices for a Meaningful Information Security Assessment (Part 1)

By | Healthcare IT, Information Security, Project Management

Preparing for an information security assessment is a daunting challenge – especially if previous assessments were not handled well.  In most cases, adequate preparation and a mindset geared towards getting an honest assessment of the current state will yield significant benefits for the organization only if sufficient effort is spent on delivery.

Great teams sometimes fail because of a lack of delivery management.  This is as true for an information security assessment as it is for a development project.  In fact, some may argue that it is truer of an assessment because of the finality and timing of the final report versus the iterative nature of many development projects. 

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ICD-10 Impact and Managing the Delay

By | Change Management, Collaboration, Communication, Data, Healthcare IT, IT Implementation, Project Management, Technical

Last month, SEI’s Matt Walton, PhD and John Halamka, MD, CIO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), co-presented a technical and operations overview of BIDMC’s ICD-10 program at Massachusetts Health Data Consortium’s (MHDC) ICD-10 conference held on March 10, 2014.

Speaking at the conference, Dr. Halamka said that the technology itself, moving from ICD-9 codes to ICD-10 codes is mechanical and he is not worried about that. What he is concerned about, is getting meaningful data into that new ICD-10 code and actually being audit-proof. He added, “this will be a bounty hunter’s delight as they find a disconnect between what was actually documented and what was coded. That’s the real technology dilemma.”

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Changes in the Health & Human Services IT Landscape

By | Healthcare IT, IT Implementation

Love it or hate it, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is having a profound impact on the U.S. healthcare system.  Of particular interest to me is the impact it is having on the IT landscape of the systems, agencies and governments that are responsible for providing the U.S. with healthcare services.

All U.S. states are mandated to provide both health and human services to their residents.  Health services are dominated by Medicaid and Medicare, human services by such benefits as nutritional, cash and living assistance.  Some of the existing systems in operation to manage the determination and disbursement of these benefits are over thirty years old.   Built before the concept of a Services Oriented Architecture (SOA), without the benefit of enterprise level integration services and in some cases with only minimal technical maintenance support, these systems desperately need to be replaced.

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