Excellence (ĕk‘sə-ləns) n.
- A special feature or quality that confers superiority
- The quality of being exceptionally good
I have mentioned this many times but it bears repeating with three recent news articles – the electronic health record itself is not a game changer but it is a powerful information gathering tool. However, by gathering information in a single collaborative place, EHR technology allows all clinical providers to measure, monitor, and begin to improve the way the provide care. It is this later part, which is part of the overall organizational transformation enabled by the technology (not solely because of it), that allows an organization to achieve the promised high performance results of an often painful EHR implementation.
- Kaiser achieves top ranking among California HMO’s. I have mentioned Kaiser before. They are well positioned to be the national leader, eclipsing the VA, because they have continued to heavily invest in the technology while the VA has essentially lost their lead due to political infighting, inept leadership, and general lack of vision (contrast this with the Indian Health Service which ROCKS under Terry Cullen’s leadership). Watch for Kaiser to extend their leadership with how they engage their patients and extend the EHR from the enterprise to the home.
- Midland Memorial recognized as an Info World Top 10 Projects. I obviously am pretty pleased with this recognition as Midland was our first commercial customer. The focus of this award is the intelligent use of the public domain VistA software to literally transform the organization. They have begun to reap the clinical benefits, and will continue to do so as the software marinates and permeates their ancillary services. They have also extended the software in new and exciting ways that should give the entire code base a new life that the VA had strangled out of it after years of neglect.
- GE Health Care wants to invest $200M in National Health Record. We are all familiar with GE’s excellence in all the things it pursues including their famed Top 2 approach to every industry. Well, given that philosophy, they should bail out of HIT and reinvest in their market leading imaging technology. The GE Health Care unit has floundered, and beyond some big names (including Mayo, IHC, and Montefiore), it has essentially been a market loser. After their very promising beginning, with their $100M partnership announcement with Intermountain Health Care, they have floundered. Their Centricity product, plus the indigestion with the IDX acquisition, has proven to be as dysfocusing as dysfunctional to integrate. While I applaud the effort and the intention, making a $200M investment in a national project is but a PITTANCE (See Kaiser’s $10B investment in Epic). I hope they keep the promise of making the “open architecture” available so that others may learn and adopt code that may be produced by this effort.
I anticipate many more efforts, announcements, and projects like the above in the coming years. Particularly when we can agree on some standards of information sharing wherein all these disparate efforts can now work together. I also hope to see the ongoing collaboration requirements, ultimately yield to code sharing as part of their efforts so that all these individual investments might work toward a common goal – Excellence in Clinical Outcomes and Health Care Value (outcomes / price).