HealthLeaders Media IT - August 4, 2009 | HIT Lessons from Across the Pond
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HIT Lessons from Across the Pond
Carrie Vaughan, Technology Editor

I often hear how other countries are ahead of the United States when it comes to using electronic health records and exchanging electronic health information. That is why I found a recent report, Accomplishing EHR/HIE (eHealth): Lessons from Europe," by CSC, a global consultancy firm, so interesting. It pulls 25 lessons learned from initiatives in Denmark, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. While there are key differences between these countries' efforts and the United States, they have encountered many of the same obstacles and issues we face today. [Read More]
August 4, 2009
Editor's Picks
A high-tech cure for healthcare costs
This article offers a good analysis of wireless technologies and whether or not they will help keep Americans healthier for less money. There are miniature digestible chips that can be attached to medication and send a signal confirming whether patients are taking their prescriptions. There are also devices patients can wear that relay information about vital signs to physicians. However, there are limited studies showing the cost savings generated by these wireless devices. It also is not clear whether Medicare and private payers will reimburse for some of these high tech interventions. [Read More]

Providers May Need Four Years to Implement ICD-10
According to this article by my colleague, Lisa Eramo, providers better start implementing ICD-10 immediately if they are going to meet the October 1, 2013 compliance deadline. The North Carolina Healthcare Information and Communications Alliance, Inc., and The Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange estimate it will take providers nearly 1,286 work days to implement ICD-10. For vendors, it will take nearly 1,521 work days to complete. Hospitals need to realize that adopting ICD-10 isn't a choice and that there won't be any extension or contingency period in which to do so, says Stanley Nachimson, principal of Nachimson Advisors in Reisterstown, MD, and director of the NCHICA and WEDI timeline project. [Read More]

Digital health: Struggle or a pipedream?
This article offers a glimpse into three healthcare organizations efforts to adopt electronic health records and the challenges that they have encountered. For instance, Western North Carolina Health Network, which is comprised of 16 community-based hospitals in western North Carolina, struggled to get all of the hospitals to agree on how the EHR would be used, how the data would be displayed, and who would have access. After four years, the hospitals finally came to a consensus. Patient data would live in the patient's home hospital rather than a central data warehouse and it would only be pulled on an as-needed basis. Smaller hospitals have their own challenges, according to 99-bed Memorial Hospital in Sweetwater County, WY. Getting local physicians to adopt new workflows was an enormous challenge during the first few months of implementation. [Read More]

AHRQ offers toolkit for evaluating health IT projects
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has updated its toolkit that provides step-by-step guidance for healthcare leaders on how to evaluate HIT projects. In this latest version, two examples have been added on computerized provider order entry and picture archiving and communication systems. The toolkit helps IT leaders determine the goals of their project and what elements to measure. The guide contains examples of implementation projects with suggested evaluation methodologies for each. [Read More]
Tech Headlines
Rural hospital hinging future on federal incentive
AP/Yahoo News - August 4, 2009

New epidemic fears: Hackers
Wall Street Journal - August 4, 2009

Maine unveils largest statewide health data exchange in country
iHealthBeat - August 4, 2009

Sebelius Shifts HIPAA Security Rule Enforcement to Civil Rights Office
Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media - August 3, 2009

Millions of Dollars Are Lost Because of Miscoded Durable Medical Equipment Supply Claims
Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media - July 30, 2009
Webcasts
August 18, 2009: Advanced Service Line Marketing: New Orthopedics Growth Strategies
August 20, 2009: Service Lines Strategies Workshop 2009: Gastroenterology
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IT Forum

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Audio Feature

CIO Strategies: Implementing IT in a Depressed Economy: Patty Lavely, senior vice president and CIO of Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah, GA, says CIOs should focus on educating senior executives about what it really takes to support advanced HIT systems, such as staffing levels, infrastructure requirements, and system reliability standards. [Listen Now]
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