Six Concerns Causing Sleepless Night for Health Care Admins

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Imaging

Medical imaging is growing by leaps and bounds, not only in radiology but in other "ologies" – cardiology, dermatology, pathology. They're all leveraging imaging data more, so there's explosive growth in the number of files, but also in the size of the files being generated. The resolution of images is going up, the number of slices CT scans are producing is growing, so the question for CIOs is how to manage all of this data. IT pros need to focus on the business aspects of managing vast amounts of data, and they need a strategy for enterprise image management that's larger than just radiology, even though radiology accounts for the largest number of images being stored.

The goal is to enable clinicians to see any type of study that has been done as well as clinical documentation in a longitudinal patient view, so they get a contextual timeline – complete with pictures – of that patient's health trends over a period of years. To be most effective, these solutions have to be vendor and modality neutral. The good news is that a lot of software startups are working on this now, so we are very close to being able to implement this, something that is critically important when talking about making meaningful use of data.

Health care organizations are privy to a colossal amount of highly sensitive personal data, and as such, are one of the most highly regulated industries in the U.S. Even the most benign security breach could have catastrophic effects on patients' lives. Therefore, it's no surprise that breaches, regulatory compliance and meaningful use are issues that keep health care CIOs up at night. However, with the right planning, it is possible to reduce the risk these threats pose, as well as some of the stress.

Ed Simcox, health care business leader for Logicalis US, an international IT solutions and managed services provider, recently spoke with The Healthcare Insider radio network. In his interview, Simcox identified six of the top issues in health care IT that cause sleepless nights for admins, as well as best practices for resolving these important concerns.

"Traditionally, CIOs and their IT departments in large health care organizations have been considered a necessary cost center," Simcox says. "But CIOs today want to move up the value chain inside their organizations, making IT more strategic and relevant to their Boards of Directors. Health care CIOs are transforming from what essentially was an asset management role to that of a strategic business advisor to the health system."

 

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