HIT Leaders and News’ blog

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January 5, 2016

Special announcement: Expanding our editorial footprint

By Jason Free, Executive Editor

We are happy to announce that we are expanding our editorial coverage beyond the United States, as well as healthcare IT. 

In the coming days, we will be launching our UK-sister site, HITLeadersandNews.co.uk as as our new U.S.-based hospital supply chain site HospitalPurchasing.Review



November 1, 2016

Special coverage: VUE16

 By Jason Free, Executive Editor

VUE16, the second annual Voalte User Experience conference, is happening November 9 – 11 at the Hyatt Regency in Sarasota, Florida.

At VUE16, leading healthcare organizations will gather to share their experiences and the lessons they have learned relative to leveraging Voalte’s solutions in order to maximize their clinical communications and workflows.

Hospital leaders from influential institutions such as UCSF Medical Center, Akron Children’s Hospital, St. Luke’s Health, Nemours Children’s Hospital and UConn Health will discuss a host of mHealth issues such as establishing more efficient clinical workflows, using Lean Six Sigma methodology to reduce alarm fatigue, and integrating the EHR with a mobile communication strategy.

A sample of the expert speakers set to speak about their Voalte implementations are:

  • Jay Shell, Director of Telecommunications Service Line, Ascension;
  • Pam Baker, MSN, MBA, RN, PCNS-BC, Associate CNO and CNIO, and Tammy Troyer, MSN, RN, Clinical System Analyst, Akron Children’s Hospital;
  • Candice Friestad, RN, MS, MBA, Director of Clinical Informatics, and Jill Casanova, RN, BSN, MBA, CCRN, Director of Critical Care and Adult Specialty Services, Avera Health;
  • Kevin Spolini, MSN, RN, Manager of Clinical Informatics, and Leigh Ann Ambrose, BSN, RN, PHN, CEN, Clinical Nurse 4, Emergency Services, UCSF Medical Center;
  • Janet Onieal, RN, BSN, MSHI, Director of Core Clinical Applications, and Jim Grossman, BCS, MBA-IT, ITS Director of Infrastructure and Communication, Novant Health; and
  • John Elms, President of Connexall, and Dr. Travis Good, Chief Executive Officer, Catalyze.

These industry leaders and others will share their insights on complex technology integrations, and offer real-world results from their mobile communication strategies. These conversations are aimed at examining common issues, facilitating collaborations and providing a foundation for future innovations.



September 16, 2016

But where are the graduates? The 2016 PHI Conference in review

By Baz Patel, Director of Sales, Intelligent Integration, Orion Health

This year’s Public Health Informatics Conference, “a forum for new and seasoned public health, healthcare, and information technology professionals,” was by all measures a great success, but how well were the stated objectives addressed?

Before the conference, I shared those objectives with four attendees, asked them for their expectations, and posted a selection of their feedback. Now that the conference is behind us, it’s time to hear their takeaways. 

OBJECTIVE #1: Identify the current state of public health informatics capabilities and capacities at the federal, state, and local level.

Read more



July 1, 2016

Recorded webinar

By Jason Free, Executive Editor

As promised, here is the link to gain access to the recorded version of “UCSF Improving Safety of Clinical Alarm Systems”, the clinical communications webinar I recommended a couple of weeks ago.



July 1, 2016

Re: The recent patient data breach at Massachusetts General Hospital

By Gibby Taylor, Associate Editor

The following quote is from Joe Fantuzzi, CEO of RiskVision.

“Unfortunately the breach at Massachusetts General Hospital is indicative of a much larger problem sourced to their third party vendors. The healthcare industry is being aggressively targeted by attackers aiming to access and pilfer valuable patient medical data. For hospitals and medical organizations, the stakes are high – in addition to critical patient data that’s jeopardized, hospitals and medical organizations also have to be aware of loss of reputation and potential HIPAA/HITECH violations that could also result in costly penalties. Like other industries, healthcare organizations struggle to wrap their hands around copious risk associated with their numerous third-party vendors. But you can’t manage what you can’t see. Without clear visibility into their risk posture, it’s nearly impossible to develop an effective plan to identify suspicious activity coming from third parties and apply the appropriate risk controls in order to mitigate the threat.

While no solution is 100 percent air tight in preventing attacks, healthcare organizations can take a few steps to greatly improve their security and risk posture. Among other things, we recommend they apply risk-based classification, diligence and scoring, third-party benchmarking ongoing risk monitoring and renewal termination, which will give them a leg up in preventing and mitigating these kinds of ongoing attacks.”



June 20, 2016

A clinical communications webinar for today and tomorrow

By Jason Free, Executive Editor

Last week, I attended a webinar focusing upon the issues of alarm fatigue and patient safety at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital

While I will not divulge too much information, it is very much worth mentioning how effective Kim Scurr, Vice President of Operations at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital and The Betty Irene Moore Women’s Hospital and Kevin Spolini, Manager of Nursing Informatics, at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital’s Mission Bay Campus were in providing compelling evidence of the effectiveness of their organization’s coordinated alarm management plan, especially relative to improving patient safety and reducing alarm fatigue. They described in great detail the strategies and processes used to manage the care team communication and alarm notification within their pediatric ICU, cardiac ICU, cardiac transitional care unit and intensive care nursery.

Not only were the current benefits of thoughtfully implemented clinical communications made evident, but it also inspired attendees to think of what is within the grasp of care providers in the near future. 

Again, I don’t want to spoil the contents for first-time viewers, but we will be sure to let you know when the link to the recorded webinar becomes available. (Fingers crossed, we’ll publish a follow-up interview in the coming weeks. I’m looking at you, Voalte.)



June 8, 2016

Between iHT2 events

By Jason Free, Executive Editor

In a couple of weeks, I will be attending the iHT2 Health IT Summit in Boston. As I mentioned in April, the inaugural event in Cleveland made a very positive impression upon me. But rather than just taking my word for it, another first-time attendee Dwight Brown, Director, Analytics, Mayo Clinic had this to say when asked about his impressions of the event and its distinctions from similar industry gatherings.

At the upcoming Boston event, I look forward to attending the Security & Data Protection: High Tech & High Touch panel where industry leaders like the ones Dwight Brown mentioned will discuss the “threats to the privacy and security of patient information [that] top the list of issues keeping the healthcare C-suite awake at night.” 

Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with one of the panelists, Robert Lord, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Protenus. While we will publish our full interview with Lord in the coming weeks, I wanted to share his thoughts on iHT2 and where he places it within the wide spectrum of healthcare IT meetings.

Under the leadership of Rich Tomko, Vice President, Managing Director of Vendome Healthcare Technology at Vendome Group, and Mark Hagland, Editor-in-Chief, Healthcare Informatics, along with the hard work of people like Stephanie Stiggers-Smith, Director of Association Relationships, Vendome Group, Carolyn Slade Program Manager, Institute for Health Technology Transformation and our very own Mark W. Stevens, the iHT2 events are on the verge of becoming the gold standard for healthcare IT executive meetings. 

We welcome you to continue to checking back with us for more in-depth updates and coverage of this year’s series of iHT2 events, but ideally, you will become a participant and join the conversations at an event close to you.



May 4, 2016

Happy Birthday to us! Thank you all for your support!

By L. Mallory, Publisher

A year ago, HIT Leaders and News.com went live with just a handful of features covering a very small spectrum of topics.

Some thought we had no chance to succeed and they questioned our place within the already crowded HIT publishing space. However, my fabulous staff never wavered. 

Rather than simply cranking out the day-to-day headlines from the field, they worked hard to gain access to the most innovative projects and thought leaders in healthcare IT. Without that rare dedication to creating strong relationships, we would not be here today, and we would not be able to reach our extremely ambitious goals for the future.

I won’t ever be able to thank our staff enough for the level of dedication and sacrifice they have consistently displayed over the past year. It’s been truly humbling to watch them work so closely together (morning, noon and night) to bring our site to the forefront of healthcare IT conversations around the world. They have put up with the delays, pivots and countless other frustrations that are prone to launches such as ours, but they never lost their enthusiasm and vision for creating more intimate editorial projects with the true leaders in our industry.  

For all of you who worked with us prior to our launch and in our early days, we deeply thank you. Your leap of faith in trusting us as we wobbled among the vastly more established HIT resources, trying to find our legs and our way, was the true difference maker for us. Everyone on our staff is very appreciative of the generous and constant stream of encouragement they receive from the industry to continue our mission. You make all of our jobs so much easier and so much more rewarding than we ever thought possible. 

Again, I want to personally thank each and every person that has touched HIT Leaders and News.com over the past year. To say it has been a challenging yet thrilling year would be an understatement.

For those who still think we are just a mere blip, you ain’t seen nothing yet 🙂  



April 20, 2016

iHT2 in Cleveland

By Jason Free, Managing Editor

I just completed my first iHT2 event, the inaugural meeting in Cleveland April 19 – 20, and I have to say I am beyond impressed. The quality of the presentations was exceptionally high and the attendees, HIT thought leaders and practitioners from across America, were all extremely engaged. (Both elements are far too rare to find at HIT events these days.)

Rich Tomko, Vice President, Managing Director of Vendome Healthcare Technology at Vendome Group, and Mark Hagland, Editor-in-Chief, Healthcare Informatics, designed and supervised the two-day gathering. The topics covered included: Big Data in Cleveland; patient and consumer engagement; using data and mobile technology to reduce 30-day readmissions; interoperability and HIE; health systems as entrepreneurs; and security and data protection. 

The event was truly inspiring to witness and you don’t have to take just my word for it. In the coming weeks, we will present the thoughts and take-aways from some of the event’s attendees, such as Kevin Cleary, Vice President, Foundation and Education Foundation, CHiME; John McDaniel, Vice President, Innovation and Technology Solutions, HCI group; Laura Rush, Executive Director, Clinical and Translational Research Unit, Ohio University; Alan Russell, Executive Vice President, Chief Innovation Officer, Allegheny Health Network; Dwight Brown, Director – Analytics, Mayo Clinic, and others.

For those of you who were not able to attend, you have plenty of opportunities in the coming months to learn our industry’s emerging best practices and to network with fellow thought leaders as other iHT2 events are scheduled throughout the remains of the year.

I will be attending the next meeting in Boston and I would welcome the chance to learn about your thoughts on the event, as well as the work you are doing within your organization. So, feel free to introduce yourself and we’ll talk.  You can’t miss me. I will be, probably, the only person in a suit and wearing Adidas soccer shoes.



February 25, 2016

We’ve been busy

By Gibby Taylor, Associate Editor

Admittedly, it has been too long since we last created a post, but we do have a very good excuse: HIMSS. In addition to our usual coverage, we’ve been setting up pre-conference interviews and in-person meetings at a seemingly constant rate since just after RSNA. While our extra preparations for HIMSS has meant less time for us to create blog posts, I promise that the editorial pieces and webinars (that’s right, I said webinars) set for publication will more than make up for the loss. 

We hope you have enjoyed our “Countdown to HIMSS’16” series as much as we did in creating it. (If you missed these articles and press releases, just press here to catch-up.)  We will conclude the series on Monday with our final installment of the “Voices of Greenway Health.” 

Check back whenever you get a break (ha!) during HIMSS and make sure your follow our conference updates on Twitter @HITleadersnews.

See you all in Las Vegas! 



November 10, 2015

“Of the Year” Awards

By Jason Free, Managing Editor

As we come to the close of another year, we will soon be inundated with countless “Best of” lists and “Of the Year” awards. The scope and spectrum of these announcements are so great that most simply get lost in the shuffle or they are quickly forgotten as they are quickly replaced again and again. The hard work and innovative ideas that justifiably earned special distinction hardly gets the attention and careful consideration that they deserve.  

With the hope of avoiding these trappings, we are proud to announce that we will publish our inaugural “HIT Leaders and News Awards” August 1, 2016. 

These awards will be presented to individuals, organizations, academic institutions and businesses for outstanding innovation, leadership and contribution to the healthcare IT industry. 

We will post more information regarding each award in June. 



September 30, 2015

The death of ICD-9

By Jason Free, Managing Editor

Tomorrow, ICD-9, a diagnosis system that was installed when “The Dukes of Hazard” was a prime-time hit, will finally be no more. That being said, it will not be forgotten any time soon and its successor will undoubtedly continue to cause a great deal of confusion and anger within our industry for some time to come. 

We will continue to follow ICD-10 as it becomes the new normal in American healthcare because we have felt all along that the naysayers and special interest groups that stood in its way (and continue to do so in some instances) were dead wrong. We appreciate the pains of such a large transition and we know many organizations will struggle in the near future, but we believe ICD-10 will turn out to be the same doomsday scenario that Y2K ended up proving not to be.

We have posted three perspectives on the ICD-10 mandate, one from a small practice, one from a large health system and one from a vendor. We will publish follow-ups to each piece as well as additional features highlighting the progress of other organizations in the coming weeks as a means to develop a pragmatic perspective of how our industry is coping with its new coding and billing system. Our aim with these pieces is not to say, “I told you so,” rather it is to show in the most realistic terms possible the struggles, benefits and success stories generated from ICD-10.

We welcome your ICD-10 stories, both positive and negative, so that we can ensure that we do not allow our admittedly biased viewpoints to dominate the conversation. As always, feel free to participate in the discussion by either submitting your comments or sending me a message at: jason.free@hitleadersandnews.com    



August 31, 2015

A new platform for HIT Leaders

By Jason Free, Managing Editor

The response to our new HIT Leader’s Blog section has been overwhelming. We are very proud to bring you the latest thoughts and perspectives of our industry’s leaders.

For the next several weeks, we will focus upon the vendor community, however, we will also present the views of providers as a direct response to the posts we publish. Our aim is to create an asynchronous dialogue that generates the most current viewpoints available from the field.  We welcome you to visit our HIT Leaders and News Blogs’ main page daily.  Feel free to participate in the discussion by either submitting your comments or sending me a message at: jason.free@hitleadersandnews.com    

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