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What’s Next in the World of Healthcare IT and EHR?

Posted on February 24, 2016 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

In the following video, Healthcare Scene sits down with Dana Sellers, CEO of Encore, a Quintiles Company. Dana is an expert in the world of healthcare IT and EHR and provides some amazing expertise on what’s happening in the industry. We talk about where healthcare IT is headed now that meaningful use has matured and healthcare CIOs are starting to look towards new areas of opportunity along with how they can make the most out of their previous EHR investments.

As we usually do with all of our Healthcare Scene interviews, we held an “After Party” session with a little more informal discussion about what’s happening in the healthcare IT industry. If you don’t watch anything else, skip to this section of the video when Dana tells a story about a CIO who showed the leadership needed to make healthcare interoperability a reality.

Do Hospitals Need an EDW to Participate in an ACO?

Posted on July 29, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

The following is a guest blog post by Dana Sellers, Chief Executive Officer of Encore Health Resources. Dana’s comments are in response to my post titled, “Skinny Data Solves Specific Problems While BIG DATA Looks for Unseen Problems.” For more context, also check out my post on Skinny Data in Healthcare, and my video interview with Dana Sellers.
Dana-Sellers-Encore-Health-Resources
You did a great job of nailing down the kinds of problems our industry can tackle with BIG DATA on the one hand and smart, skinny data on the other in your blog last Thursday, “Skinny Data Solves Specific Problems While BIG DATA Looks for Unseen Problems.” We here at Encore Health Resources were particularly intrigued when you asked whether skinny data would be enough for ACOs, or whether hospitals will need full enterprise data warehouses – EDWs – to meet the demands of ACOs.

I’d love to take a shot at that. As I’m sure lots of your readers know, an EDW is a collection of enterprise data based on the best guess of what an organization thinks it will need over the long run. So it’s bigger than skinny data (only what we know we need now) but smaller than Big Data (every bit of data available). So now we get to your question…do hospitals need an EDW to meet the demands of participating in an ACO?

If you’ve got one, great! In large part, we know what measures ACOs want a hospital to report. If you already have a mature, well-populated EDW — fantastic! Pull the needed data, calculate the required measures, and go for it.

If not, start with skinny data. Many organizations find that they are jumping into ACOs before they have a mature EDW. So this is a great example of where skinny data is a great idea. The concept of skinny data lets you focus on the specific data required by the ACO. Instead of spending a long time trying to gather everything you might need eventually, focus on the immediate needs: quality, readmissions, unnecessary ED visits, controlling diabetes, controlling CHF, etc. Gather that quickly, and then build to a full EDW later.

Think about a skinny data appliance. One of the problems I’m seeing across the country is that organizations are rarely talking about just one ACO. These days, it’s multiple ACOs, and each one requires a different set of metrics. I talked with an organization last week that is abandoning its current business intelligence strategy and seeking a new one because they didn’t feel the old strategy was going to be able to accommodate the explosion of measures that are required by all the ACOs and commercial contracts and Federal initiatives coming down the road. The problem is that you don’t have to just report all these measures- you actually need to perform against these measures, or you won’t be reimbursed in this new world.

One way to deal with this is to establish a sound EDW strategy but supplement it with a skinny data appliance. I doubt that’s an official term, but my mother never told me I couldn’t make up words. To me, a skinny data appliance is something that sits on top of your EDW and gives you the ability to easily extract, manipulate, report, and monitor smaller subsets of data for a special purpose. As the demands of ACOs, commercial contracts, and Federal regulations proliferate, the ability to be quick and nimble will be critical — and being nimble without an army of programmers will be important. One large organization I know estimates that the use of a smart skinny data appliance may save them several FTEs (full time equivalents) per year, just in the programming of measures.

Bottom line – I believe skinny data will support current ACO requirements. Eventually, an EDW will be useful, and skinny data is a good way to get started. Many large organizations will go the EDW route, and they will benefit from a skinny data appliance.

John, as always, I love talking with you!

Lots of Interesting Discussions at HIMSS Day 1

Posted on February 20, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Today’s been a really interesting first day of HIMSS. I’d heard good things about the Health IT Venture Forum in past years and so I was really glad to be able to attend this year. Of course, if you’re following @techguy and/or @ehrandhit, then you’ve already read a number of my updates.

I also posted what might be the biggest news coming out of HIMSS 11 today that meaningful use stage 2 will include EHR usability.

I was impressed by the Mitochon systems presentation at the New Venture Forum. I had a great talk with CEO, Chris Riley after their presentation. I really like his vision for what they’re working to create. The more I talk with Free EHR vendors like Mitochon, the more I can see the potential of their business model. Shahid, the Healthcare IT Guy, told me that he knew of a couple other free EHR at HIMSS. I didn’t get those requests, so I’m interested to know the other Free EHR competitors. (Full Disclosure: Mitochon is an advertiser on this site)


As you can see from that tweet. I was really intrigued by ZyDoc. I’ve been fascinated with NLP since last HIMSS. Combine that with the increasingly popular auto coding engines that are coming out and it’s a really interesting offering.

One of the presenters at the venture forum said the following about the hospital connectivity market. I wonder what people think about it:


I’ve always been fascinated with China. Add in my interest in EHR and of course I loved the presentation on EHR in China. This company is even more interesting since they have built the EHR with the Chinese character set and it seems like they understand the Chinese healthcare culture.


I loved how the Rothman score tried to quantify a patient’s condition for early warning. To see the score change on a graph really does change your view of a patient’s progress. I just wonder what a hospital’s liability is if the score changes and they don’t follow the alert. I also wonder how many false positives it would produce. Some sort of summary like this has to be the future. I really hope that they’re successful.

The following tweet was the best quote by Aneesh Chopa, CTO of the US. I also loved his energy. I bet he’d be a fascinating person to have dinner with.

I also had a chance to meet with Shareable Ink, but I think I’m going to save my discussion of their technology for an after HIMSS post. So, watch for that. It’s really neat technology.

The increasingly famous Brantley Whittington, CEO of spoof EMR company Extormity, stopped and chatted with me. I’m still holding out on saying who’s behind Extormity, but just look for the Brantley Whittington name badge and you’ll be able to figure it out early (or check back Tuesday when I’ll post it).

I also had a good chat with Dynamic Health IT during the HIMSS opening reception. Check them out for EHR certification and meaningful use consulting. Or as they describe it, the gap analysis for hospitals interested in becoming certified and showing meaningful use. Yes, they help with the hospital EHR self-certification.

In the evening, I got the chance to meet with Dana Sellers, CEO of Encore Health Resources. I told one PR person that emailed me that I have a policy of only meeting with smart people. Dana definitely fits this category.

As most of you know, a lot of my focus is on the ambulatory EMR world and so I appreciate Dana taking some time to talk with me (and really educate me) about healthcare IT in the hospital world. One of the most incredible things they told me was that Encore Healthcare has 143 employees and they’re only 2 years old. That’s some pretty good growth for an EHR consulting company.

One thing I was impressed with was Dana’s candor with her previous company (which was sold to IBM) and now what they’re able to do with Encore Health. Dana was partially embarrassed to admit that in the previous company they worried too much about processes and not enough on getting the data back out. She did say that she thinks that Encore Health is in a much better position based on changes to technology and the environment to really get the data out of these systems so they can focus even more on the quality of healthcare that’s provided.

So much more that I could share from my talk with Dana. It probably deserves it’s on post and most certainly the things she shared with me will come up in future posts. Needless to say I was extremely impressed with Dana and so it’s no wonder why Encore Health has been so successful. I might have to stop by Tommy Bahama’s again just to hang out with more smart people.

Finally, a couple interesting tweets I saw during the show:


and
http://twitter.com/#!/biomedsociety/status/39357644800000001

Isn’t it cool that I can cover sessions that I didn’t even attend thanks to Twitter?

Much much more tomorrow. Unless I’m too tired from all the parties;-)

EMRandHIPAA.com’s HIMSS11 coverage is sponsored by Practice Fusion, provider of the free, web-based Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system used by over 70,000 healthcare providers in the US.