Hayes' Healthcare Blog

John Halamka

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Restoring the Joy in Clinical Practice

Posted by John Halamka on September 20, 2017 at 9:00 AM

By Dr. John D. Halamka, MD, MS, CIO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act of 2009 has been blamed for many things, including the diminished joy of clinical practice.  

While HITECH certainly has its flaws, it’s hard to deny the positive impact.  In 2008 before the act was passed, less than 10 percent of non-Federal acute care hospitals were using a basic EHR. In 2015, 96 percent of those same organizations had implemented a certified EHR system. No other sector of the U. S. economy has experienced such accelerated technology adoption.

However, HITECH is just one component of the legislation, regulations and demands that have increased practice burden without simplifying processes through automation.

What can we do to transform the EHR from a burdensome requirement into an essential tool that improves the quality of practice life? Ideally the EHR of the near future will integrate patient data from multiple sources - providers, payers, patients, employers and devices then turn that data into wisdom, providing the clinician with actionable advice that will improve quality and reduce total medical expense. To realize that goal there is foundational infrastructure to be built. Instead of wringing our hands and blaming “information blocking”, we should focus on a short term work plan with the following.

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Topics: clinical optimization, EHR, value-based care, Hayes Thought Leadership Blog Series, HITECH

On the Road with John Halamka, Healthcare IT Observations

Posted by John Halamka on November 9, 2016 at 9:00 AM

By John Halamka, MD, CIO, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and co-chair of the national Healthcare IT Standards Committee.

Over the past few months, I’ve been in England, China, Denmark, New Zealand, and Canada.

Each of them is rethinking their healthcare IT strategy and is not entirely satisfied with past progress.  

I’m often asked by senior government officials to help harmonize IT strategy at the country level. That I can do. I’m also asked to discuss the US Presidential campaign, but that defies rational explanation.

I frequently say that healthcare IT issues are the same all over the world.  Here’s a few common observations:

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Topics: healthcare IT, Hayes Thought Leadership Blog Series

Healthcare Leaders blog series: Advice for the Modern IT Leader, John Halamka, MD, CIO

Posted by John Halamka on June 5, 2015 at 10:45 AM

Hayes is pleased to introduce our Healthcare Leaders blog series. In this series, we ask some of healthcares most prominent leaders to comment on the current state of healthcare as well as discuss what they think the future holds. Our first Healthcare Leader blog is authored by John Halamka, MD, CIO, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and co-chair of the national Healthcare IT Standards Committee.

Advice for the Modern IT Leader

By John Halamka, MD, CIO Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Recently I gave a keynote address about the characteristics of the modern IT leader - call it my top 10 list of behaviors and tactics.    As a pre-amble, I offered an environmental scan of the regulatory and business challenges we’re likely to face over the next five years.

All IT leaders have weathered the impact of the Meaningful Use program, ICD-10 implementation, HIPAA Omnibus Rule and Affordable Care Act.   Over the past few weeks, the Sustainable Growth Rate fix, the 21st Century Cures Act, and the Burgess Bill have added even more complexity to IT tactical planning.   Here’s my advice.

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Topics: healthcare IT planning, ICD-10, meaningful use, thought leadership, IT strategy, healthcare leaders, advice, Hayes Thought Leadership Blog Series

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