Each year the editors at HealthLeaders magazine choose 20 people who are making healthcare better. One of my nominees this year was David Blumenthal, MD, the national coordinator for health information technology. I called him "kind of a rock star" among healthcare tech types—I wonder how this buttoned-down doc will react to that characterization. And I wonder, too, how the healthcare industry in general will react to the idea that we think he is one of the 20 people who are playing a crucial role in the betterment of healthcare.
I'm guessing that opinions either way would be not so much a referendum on Blumenthal personally but on electronic health records systems in general.
Standards and certification, financing, technology, logistics, privacy and security, software and hardware, and their overall ability to improve quality of care—there are still a lot of unanswered questions about the feasibility and efficacy of the systems.