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HIMSS Analytics Honors Sutter Health with Stage 7 Award and Associated Clinics with Stage 7 Ambulatory Awards

CHICAGO (March 3, 2015) – HIMSS Analytics awarded Sutter Health’s Memorial Medical Center in Modesto, Calif. with a  Stage 7 Award, and its Palo Alto Medical Foundation clinics throughout the Bay Area with Stage 7 Ambulatory Awards.

Stage 7 Award: HIMSS Analytics developed the EMR Adoption Model in 2005 as a methodology for evaluating the progress and impact of electronic medical record systems for hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics™ Database. There are eight stages (0-7) that measure a hospital’s implementation and utilization of information technology applications. The final stage, Stage 7, represents an advanced patient record environment. The validation process to confirm a hospital has reached Stage 7 includes a site visit by an executive from HIMSS Analytics and former or current chief information officers to ensure an unbiased evaluation of the Stage 7 environments.

Stage 7 Ambulatory Award: Developed in 2011, the EMR Ambulatory Adoption Model provides a methodology for evaluating the progress and impact of electronic medical record systems for ambulatory facilities owned by hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics™ Database.  These facilities include physician practices, clinics, outpatient centers and specialty clinics. Tracking their progress in completing eight stages (0-7), ambulatory facilities can review the implementation and use of IT applications with the intent of reaching Stage 7, which represents an advanced electronic patient record environment.

During the fourth quarter of 2014, only 3.6 percent of the more than 5,400 U.S. hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics® Database received the Stage 7 Award, and only 6.21  percent of the more than 30,000 ambulatory clinics in the HIMSS Analytics® Database received the Stage 7 Ambulatory Award.

“This Stage 7 recognition from HIMSS Analytics serves as testament to the hard work and commitment of our dedicated physicians, nurses, clinicians, allied health professionals and information services staff.  It is both acknowledgement and validation of our continuing commitment to provide the safest, highest quality care and comfort to those we serve,” said Jon Manis, senior vice president and chief information officer, Sutter Health.

Serving patients and their families in more than 100 Northern California cities and towns, Sutter Health doctors, not-for-profit hospitals and other health care service providers share resources and expertise to advance health care quality and access. The Sutter Medical Network includes many of California’s top-performing, highest-quality physician organizations as measured annually by the Integrated Healthcare Association. Sutter-affiliated hospitals are regional leaders in cardiac care, women’s and children’s services, cancer care, orthopedics and advanced patient-safety technology.

“Sutter Health’s EHR implementation is a star example for California and the west coast. The health care network expertly involves its medical staff to drive clinical transformation across its hospitals and care centers—all enabled by a comprehensive EHR system. Its care centers consistently use the EHR technology, showing strong system governance and well-delivered education,” said John P. Hoyt, FACHE, FHIMSS, executive vice president, HIMSS Analytics.

Sutter Health will be recognized at the 2015 Annual HIMSS Conference & Exhibition on April 12-16, 2015, in Chicago, Ill.

Visit the HIMSS Analytics web site for more information on the Stage 7 award and Stage 7 Ambulatory Award.

About HIMSS Analytics
HIMSS Analytics collects, analyzes and distributes essential health IT data related to products, costs, metrics, trends and purchase decisions.  It delivers quality data and analytical expertise to healthcare delivery organizations, IT companies, governmental entities, financial, pharmaceutical and consulting companies. Visit www.himssanalytics.org.

HIMSS Analytics is a part of HIMSS, a cause-based, global enterprise that produces health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share the cause of transforming health and healthcare through the best use of IT.  HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

March 3, 2015 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Healthcare Leaders Praise Reintroduction of the Flex-IT Act

Strong, Bipartisan Support for Increasing Meaningful Use Flexibility

ANN ARBOR, MI, January 12, 2015 – Healthcare leaders praised the reintroduction of the Flexibility in Health IT Reporting (Flex-IT) Act of 2015, a bipartisan bill granting the nation’s healthcare providers additional flexibility in meeting Meaningful Use (MU) requirements through a shortened reporting period in 2015. Swift action by Congress is needed to help providers already in the 2015 reporting year for Meaningful Use, several healthcare organizations said today.

Officials from the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), American Hospital Association (AHA), American Medical Association (AMA), College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME), Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) applaud the leadership shown by bill sponsor Representative Renee Ellmers (R-NC-02) and a bipartisan list of original cosponsors, including Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-07), Ron Kind (D-WI-03), Glenn Thompson (R-PA-05) and David Scott (D-GA-13).

“We commend the leadership demonstrated by a bipartisan group of House Members on this critically important issue,” said CHIME President and CEO Russell P. Branzell, FCHIME, CHCIO. “With such across-the-isle support, Congress has underscored how fundamental this program is to the future of healthcare in the U.S.

“While CHIME remains committed to the success of Meaningful Use, and to making sure improved patient care is the program’s lasting legacy, we believe significant changes are needed to address increased dissatisfaction with EHRs and growing disenchantment with the program,” Branzell added. “This bill, if passed, would begin that much-needed course correction.”

The Flex-IT Act was introduced in September 2014, following a national joint call to action last year. The new Flex-IT Act of 2015 would adjust the Meaningful Use reporting timeline, giving providers the option to choose any three-month quarter for EHR reporting in 2015.

“America’s hospitals are strongly committed to the adoption of EHRs, because of their potential to increase the quality of care and reduce costs for patients,” said Rick Pollack, Executive Vice President of the American Hospital Association. “The health care field is faced with many major challenges and changes, all hitting at the same time. We need to be practical and responsible in terms of implementation timetables. That’s why hospitals need flexibility. This legislation is a positive first step toward ensuring the program is a success, and America’s hospitals look forward to working to achieve its passage.”

“Our nation needs a more efficient, cost-effective and patient-centered healthcare system. HIMSS applauds the efforts taken by these Congressional leaders and fully supports the Flexibility in Health IT Reporting (Flex-IT) Act of 2015 as essential to giving providers and hospitals a realistic chance to meet the 2015 Meaningful Use requirements,” said Carla Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS, Executive Vice President, HIMSS North America

According to the latest data available from the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS), more than one-third of hospitals expected to demonstrate Stage 2 Meaningful Use in 2014 had to file for a hardship exception or meet Stage 1 requirements again. In 2015, CMS data indicate more than 3,900 hospitals and 260,000 physicians will have to meet Stage 2 requirements. However, CHIME estimates that more than half of these EHs will likely seek further hardship exceptions or face penalties in 2015. And with CMS estimating that more than 257,000 EPs will receive penalties in 2015, the likelihood of robust physician participation is doubtful.

“We greatly appreciate the willingness of this bipartisan group of legislators to address this critical issue,” stated Anders Gilberg, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, for the Medical Group Management Association. “Stage 2 of Meaningful Use has proven extremely challenging and, absent this reporting flexibility, a significant number of physicians will be unable to participate in the program and unfairly penalized. Passage of the Flex-IT Act is a critical step to allow physician practices to continue down the pathway of effective adoption and use of EHR technology,” added Gilberg.

“We are pleased with renewed efforts to provide greater flexibility in the Meaningful Use program and hope that this is the first of several steps to make the program work better for physicians and other providers so that the full potential of these technologies to improve care and value can be realized,” said American Medical Association President-Elect Steven J. Stack, MD.

In October 2014, the AMA unveiled their Meaningful Use blueprint, outlining several recommendations meant to improve participation in the EHR Incentive program. Among the high-level recommendations, AMA officials urged that policymakers adopt a more flexible approach for meeting Meaningful Use to allow more physicians to successfully participate; better aligning quality measure requirements including reducing the reporting burden on physicians and helping relieve them from overlapping penalties; and restructure EHR certification to focus on key areas like interoperability.

“As some of the earliest adopters of certified electronic health records technology, family physicians have demonstrated their belief that interoperable EHR – like primary care itself – is an essential component of a higher-quality, lower-cost health system,” said Robert Wergin, MD, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians. “However, as family medicine continues to do its part in building the EHR infrastructure – a massive undertaking – CMS should not set benchmarks so high that it discourages participation in the program. We applaud Reps. Ellmers and Kind for introducing the Flexibility in Health IT Reporting Act, which will allow eligible physicians to achieve Meaningful Use of EHR by reporting for a three-month period in 2015. The American Academy of Family Physicians believes this flexibility will help physicians stay on track in building an EHR system that works.”

About CHIME
The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) is an executive organization dedicated to serving chief information officers and other senior healthcare IT leaders. With more than 1,400 CIO members and over 140 healthcare IT vendors and professional services firms, CHIME provides a highly interactive, trusted environment enabling senior professional and industry leaders to collaborate; exchange best practices; address professional development needs; and advocate the effective use of information management to improve the health and healthcare in the communities they serve. For more information, please visit www.chimecentral.org.

January 12, 2015 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

What’s Next for Imaging Technology?

HIMSS Analytics Releases 2014 Imaging Technology Study

Chicago – December 2, 2014 – HIMSS Analytics released today its latest Essentials Brief, the 2014 Imaging Technology Study.

This detailed look at the PACS (picture archiving and communication system) imaging technology landscape among U.S. hospitals and ambulatories includes data from the HIMSS Analytics® Database, as well as unique insight from imaging services executives across the country. Topics in the Brief include market utilization, vendor market share and trajectory, as well as a look at the usage and drivers behind Enterprise Image Viewing.

“What became clear is that despite being a saturated market, the imaging technology landscape is also one in which outdated technology is not uncommon,” said HIMSS Analytics Research Director, Brendan FitzGerald. “That, coupled with a growing need for additional functionality around image management and distribution is leading organizations to upgrade technology currently in place.”

Highlights of the Essentials Brief include:

•    The need for additional functionality was cited as the primary driver by 68% of respondents who plan to purchase a new system,
upgrade or replace their current system

•     Just under 25% of respondents currently make images accessible via mobile devices

•    Approximately 50% of respondents currently utilize Enterprise Image Viewing functionality

HIMSS Analytics Essentials Briefs are complimentary for hospitals and health systems, and are available for a fee to all other interested parties. To request a copy, please emailconsulting@himssanalytics.org from your employer’s email domain.

About HIMSS Analytics
HIMSS Analytics collects, analyzes and distributes essential health IT data related to products, costs, metrics, trends and purchase decisions.  It delivers quality data and analytical expertise to healthcare delivery organizations, IT companies, governmental entities, financial, pharmaceutical and consulting companies. Visit www.himssanalytics.org.

December 2, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

For HIE Staffing, Connectivity, Data Integrity and Data Integration Positions Difficult to Fill

CHICAGO (November 4, 2014) – As health information organizations (HIOs) continue to mature and evolve, current staffing requirements must be studied to recruit and maintain professional talent.

This is the finding of a new study jointly published by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) and HIMSS, “Trends in HIE Organizational Staffing: A Deeper Look at Staffing Challenges.”  Survey participants offered insight into hiring practices for key health IT and health information management (HIM) roles within health information organizations (HIOs).

“As healthcare organizations become increasingly interconnected through health information exchange, it’s important for the industry to understand how to operate health information exchanges for best results,” said AHIMA CEO Lynne Thomas Gordon, MBA, RHIA, CAE, FACHE, FAHIMA. “This survey will provide valuable insights for those who work in organizations that benefit from sharing health information.”

The 2014 survey focused on three types of positions–related to issues of connectivity, data integrity, and data integration–that were identified as difficult positions to fill.  Key findings from the survey include:

•Growing diversity and range of participants such as payers, behavioral health centers, nursing homes and accountable care organizations
•A shift away from HIOs existing as public entities and toward public/private organizations
•The three focus areas of connectivity, data integrity and data integration can refer to a wide range of job titles and responsibilities across HIO operations
• Some job titles are fluid across two roles such as Database Administrator, Interface Engineer and Project or Implementation Manager
• Education requirements for these roles were generally at the bachelor’s or master’s degree levels, with preference for Computer Science, Health IT, Telecommunications or HIPAA/Security concentrations
• Compensation for the three roles targeted in the 2014 survey was slightly higher than the salary ranges identified for all IT roles in the 2012 survey
• The top ongoing challenges in staffing include cost of living and location of HIO; industry competition for qualified candidates; competitive salary and benefits; and finding individuals with appropriate skill sets.  The HIE organization positions reported to have the highest rates of turnover were Data Administrator, HIE Implementation Manager, HIE Project Manager and Physician Liaison
• Respondents continue to use a combination of staffing approaches ranging from full-time and part-time employees to consultants and contractors
• Referrals are still the primary method for identifying HIE technology candidates, though additional sources such as external searches, recruiting firms and industry conferences or events were referenced by several participants
 
“With the continuous demand for qualified employees in healthcare settings, this updated research can help guide hiring managers and educate potential candidates interested in careers focused on connectivity, data integrity and data integration in an HIE setting,” said Carla Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS, Executive Vice President, HIMSS North America.  “The research also may lead professionals in healthcare or other fields to consider a career path in health IT based on current needs in the marketplace.”
 

Access the 2014 report through HIMSS and AHIMA.  For additional discussion on this topic, join the conversation in the HIMSS LinkedIn group and the AHIMA LinkedIn group.

The report is a follow-up to a 2012 survey also jointly published by AHIMA and HIMSS, “Trends in HIE Organizational Staffing: AHIMA/HIMSS Staffing Model Environmental Scan.”

Learn more about the research on the HIMSS Blog with a post from HIMSS and AHIMA.

About AHIMA

The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) represents more than 71,000 educated health information management and health informatics professionals in the United States and around the world. AHIMA is committed to promoting and advocating for high quality research, best practices and effective standards in health information and to actively contributing to the development and advancement of health information professionals worldwide. AHIMA’s enduring goal is quality healthcare through quality information.www.ahima.org

About HIMSS

HIMSS is a global, cause-based, not-for-profit organization focused on better health through information technology (IT). HIMSS leads efforts to optimize health engagements and care outcomes using information technology. HIMSS is a cause-based, global enterprise producing health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share this cause. HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

November 4, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Disappointing Meaningful Use Data Prompts Industry Leaders to Urge HHS to Take Immediate Action

WASHINGTON, DC November 4, 2014 –  Healthcare leaders from across the nation today renewed calls for the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) to shorten the Meaningful Use (MU) reporting period in 2015 and provide more program flexibility, citing concerns with lower-than-expected Medicare numbers and continued reports detailing nationwide difficulty in meeting Federal guidelines for electronic health records (EHR) requirements.

According to newly released CMS numbers, less than 17 percent of the nation’s hospitals have demonstrated Stage 2 capabilities. Further, less than 38 percent of eligible hospitals (EHs) and critical access hospitals (CAHs) have met either Stage of Meaningful Use in 2014, highlighting the difficulty of program requirements and foretelling continued struggles in 2015.  And while eligible professionals (EPs) have until the end of February to report their progress, only 2 percent have demonstrated Stage 2 capabilities thus far.

Officials from the American Medical Association (AMA), College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME), Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) called the results disappointing, yet predictable.

“Meaningful Use participation data released today have validated the concerns of providers and IT leaders.  These numbers continue to underscore the need for a sensible glide-path in 2015,” said CHIME President and CEO Russell P. Branzell, FCHIME, CHCIO.  “Providers have struggled mightily in 2014, in many instances for reasons beyond their control.  If nothing is done to help them get back on track in 2015, we will continue to see growing dissatisfaction with EHRs and disenchantment with Meaningful Use.”

CMS data required by Congress indicate that more than 3,900 hospitals must meet Stage 2 measures and objectives in 2015 and more than 260,000 eligible professionals (EPs) will need to be similarly positioned by January 1, 2015.  Given the low attestation data for 2014 and the tremendous number of providers required, but likely unable to fulfill, Stage 2 for a full 365-days in 2015, healthcare leaders have pressed for a shortened reporting period in 2015, mirroring the policy of 2014.

“The low number of EP attestations to date is clear evidence that physician practices and their vendor partners have faced significant challenges in meeting the more onerous Stage 2 requirements of meaningful use,” said Anders M. Gilberg, Senior Vice President, government affairs, MGMA. “Shortening the reporting period in 2015 is a much needed change if the program is to remain viable and is a critical step if the nation is to continue making progress toward the goal of interoperability.”

“We’re focused on transforming health and healthcare,” said Carla Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS, Executive Vice President of HIMSS.  “Meaningful Use Stage 2 and 2014 certified EHR technology are important drivers toward that outcome.  If CMS continues to require a full-year of Meaningful Use reporting for 2015, we anticipate that large segments of providers will no longer be able to participate in the program-which hinders our nation’s ability to improve the quality, safety, cost-effectiveness, and access to care.”

A coalition of national provider groups have repeatedly told CMS that a shortened reporting period will have a dramatically positive effect on program participation and policy outcomes sought in 2015.  Additionally, allowing flexibility in how providers meet the Stage 2 requirements, particularly related to Transitions of Care and View, Download, Transmit measures would also improve program participation.

“In addition to a shortened reporting period, CMS must end its one-size-fits all approach to achieve the goals of the Meaningful Use program, which are to create a secure and interoperable infrastructure,” said AMA President Elect Steven J. Stack, MD. “The AMA recently released a blueprint to outline ways to improve the Meaningful Use program, as well as a framework outlining eight priorities for more usable EHRs. We believe the stringent pass fail requirements for meeting Meaningful Use, combined with a tsunami of other overlapping regulations, are keeping physicians from participating in the Meaningful Use program.”

In response to a CMS final rule issued in September, provider groups sent a letter to Health and Human Service Secretary Burwell saying additional time would help hundreds of thousands of providers meet Stage 2 requirements in an effective and safe manner.  Further, the group of nearly twenty national provider organizations said a shortened reporting period and flexibility on the Transitions of Care and View, Download, Transmit measures would serve as positive incentive for those who must seek alternative paths to MU in 2014 to continue their work in 2015.

“The agency’s decision to require a full-year of reporting using 2014 Edition certified EHR technology (CEHRT) in 2015 puts many eligible hospitals and physicians at risk of not meeting Meaningful Use next year and hinders the forward trajectory of the program,” the letter states.

I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Defining the Business Case for Interoperability and Health Information Exchange

CHICAGO (September 9, 2014) – Even with many competitors within an industry, it is in the interest of all industry participants to have a core culture of functionality that is interoperable. With this philosophy in mind, The Business Case for Interoperability and Health Information Exchange sets the transformational stage for healthcare reform with a strong connection between health information exchange and interoperable exchange of patient health data.
The newer model of sustainability would be supported by a realignment of financial and policy incentives to support HIE, according to the white paper. This approach shifts away from the current system of provider incentives to purchase and implement EHRs and toward rewarding those vendors and stakeholders within the health marketplace who actively design for interoperability and demonstrably prove its value in practice.
“The imperative of health information exchange is now, but in the drive to move from EHRs to information exchange, several tasks still lay ahead. 
“HIMSS envisions a world where we move from static data to a liquid interoperable future, but to advance interoperability toward this goal, there are still challenging tasks ahead. Many of these tasks will require consensus building within the healthcare industry and the development of new policies, laws and ideas that have not yet been conceived or imagined. 
“Each task toward recognizing the business value of HIE also requires an understanding of the problems of the current status quo within health information technology, and a change in the U.S healthcare system to a “culture” of interoperability.” 
The Business Case for Interoperability and Health Information Exchange, p. 18
“This report serves as a primer on our country’s growing national focus on health IT, prompted by President Bush’s 2004 executive order declaring EMR availability by 2014.  It provides a history from where we’ve come and identifies the challenges ahead for HIE, healthcare integration and interoperability,” said HIE Community member Charlie Rogers, CEO, CoreHealth Technologies Inc.
 “While it is too early to say, initial indicators see interoperability and health information exchange bringing value to healthcare in terms of outcomes, quality, patient engagement and other factors that indicate the investment is paying off,” said  Keith Salzman, MD, IBM, and member of HIMSS Clinical and Business Intelligence community.
“The connection between health information exchange and interoperability continues as a primary focus for HIMSS through the Interoperability Showcase – held around the world each year – as well as our tools and resources on health IT standards and interoperability. This new white paper extends our vision of better health through IT and demonstrates support for the Office of the National Coordinator’s current 10-year vision of establishing interoperable health IT networks,” says Joyce Sensmeier MS, RN-BC, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, FAAN, Vice President, Informatics, HIMSS North America.
• Download the white paper on the HIMSS’ website.
• Watch a video on the HIMSS YouTube channel featuring John Loonsk, MD, FACMI, HIMSS Interoperability Maturity Model committee member, discussing the importance of adoption of interoperability and health IT.
About HIMSS
HIMSS is a global, cause-based, not-for-profit organization focused on better health through information technology (IT). HIMSS leads efforts to optimize health engagements and care outcomes using information technology.
HIMSS is a cause-based, global enterprise producing health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share this cause. HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.
September 9, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Recruiters/Executive Search Firms Rated Most Effective Resource in Hiring Health IT Staff

With high demand for health IT workers projected to continue for the foreseeable future, the 2014 HIMSS Workforce Survey results find healthcare organizations consider IT recruiters/ executive search firms the most effective resource to meet hiring needs  

CHICAGO (August 21, 2014) – The high demand for qualified health IT professionals continues, as revealed in the 2014 HIMSS Workplace Study, conducted by HIMSS Analytics:

  • Over 84 percent of survey respondents reported their organization hired at least one staff member in the past year, a finding consistent with the 2013 survey (86 percent).
  • With hiring in 2014 expected to continue at the 2013 pace, 82 percent of survey respondents planned to hire at least one full time employee (FTE) in the next 12 months, a slight increase from the 79 percent of respondents planning the same in 2013.

To satisfy the demand for desired workers, the study discovered that healthcare employers use multiple approaches to recruit qualified IT professionals. Yet, respondents considered IT recruiters/executive search firms to be the most effective resource to leverage in meeting their hiring demands.

“The lack of local qualified health IT workers, whether real or not, is a very real concern for many. And in an industry in which recruiting workers away from other healthcare organizations is fairly common practice, IT recruiters and staffing agencies are clearly seen to be the most effective recruitment resource at a healthcare employer’s disposal,” said Lorren Pettit, vice president, research, HIMSS Analytics. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see the use of recruiters increase as a preferred recruitment resource as the demand for select IT professionals increases.”

Survey methodology:  HIMSS Analytics conducted this research in May-June 2014 with findings based on responses from 200 individuals representing healthcare providers, vendors and consulting organizations, a sample considered generally representative of the health IT staffing needs and experiences of these types of organizations operating in the United States.

Additional survey results include the following highlights.

Staff Needed:  Clinical application support staff (58 percent) is the most sought-after position provider organizations plan to hire in the next year, an increase from 34 percent, as reported in the 2013 survey results.

IT Layoffs: Even though the reported hiring of, or plans to hire, IT staff are quite high, the findings point to a 5 percent increase in staff layoffs between 2013 (8 percent) and 2014 (13 percent).

Outsourcing or Not:  Healthcare provider organizations expect to continue use of outsourced services in the next year; over two-thirds (70 percent) of respondents reported at least one area of anticipated outsourcing. Use of outsourced services decreased this year, since the 2013 survey found 93 percent of healthcare provider organizations planned at least one outsourced service.

“The 2014 HIMSS Workforce Survey provides positive insights for both experienced and entry-level healthcare professionals,” says JoAnn Klinedinst, vice president, professional development, HIMSS North America.  “The research results show the need for a variety of IT positions in healthcare, with providers who responded to the survey stating they would likely hire clinical application support staff, while vendor respondents said they would be most interested in field support staff. In addition, a higher percentage of organizations in 2014, compared to respondents to the survey in 2013, said they were interested in training current employees to fill needed positions or were willing to hire recent graduates.”

Read the 2014 HIMSS Workforce Survey report.

About HIMSS: HIMSS is a global, cause-based, not-for-profit organization focused on better health through information technology (IT). HIMSS leads efforts to optimize health engagements and care outcomes using information technology.

HIMSS is a cause-based, global enterprise producing health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share this cause.  HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia. Visit www.himss.org.

About HIMSS Analytics: HIMSS Analytics collects, analyzes and distributes essential health IT data related to products, costs, metrics, trends and purchase decisions. It delivers quality data and analytical expertise to healthcare delivery organizations, IT companies, governmental entities, financial, pharmaceutical and consulting companies. Visit www.himssanalytics.org.

HIMSS Analytics is a part of HIMSS, a cause-based global enterprise that produces health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share the cause of transforming health and healthcare through the best use of IT.  HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

August 21, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

HIMSS Analytics Honors TriHealth Hospitals with Stage 7 Award and Associated Ambulatory Clinics with Stage 7 Ambulatory Awards

The HIMSS  Stage 7 Awards honors ambulatory facilities operating in a paperless environment and representing best practices in implementing EHR 

CHICAGO (Aug. 4, 2014) – HIMSS Analytics awarded four TriHealth hospitals with  Stage 7 Awards, and 131 of its associated ambulatory clinics, located throughout Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, with Stage 7 Ambulatory Awards.

Stage 7 Award: HIMSS Analytics developed the EMR Adoption Model in 2005 as a methodology for evaluating the progress and impact of electronic medical record systems for hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics™ Database. There are eight stages (0-7) that measure a hospital’s implementation and utilization of information technology applications. The final stage, Stage 7, represents an advanced patient record environment. The validation process to confirm a hospital has reached Stage 7 includes a site visit by an executive from HIMSS Analytics and former or current chief information officers to ensure an unbiased evaluation of the Stage 7 environments.

Stage 7 Ambulatory Award: Developed in 2011, the EMR Ambulatory Adoption Model provides a methodology for evaluating the progress and impact of electronic medical record systems for ambulatory facilities owned by hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics™ Database.  These facilities include physician practices, clinics, outpatient centers and specialty clinics. Tracking their progress in completing eight stages (0-7), ambulatory facilities can review the implementation and use of IT applications with the intent of reaching Stage 7, which represents an advanced electronic patient record environment.

During the first quarter of 2014, only 3.1 percent of the more than 5,400 U.S. hospitals in the HIMSS Analytics® Database received the Stage 7 Award, and only 4.54 percent of the more than 24,200 ambulatory clinics in the HIMSS Analytics® Database received the Stage 7 Ambulatory Award .

“We are thrilled to be one of a small number of hospitals in the country to achieve this high level of technological integration and honored to be the only adult hospital in Cincinnati to do so,” said John Prout, TriHealth president and chief executive officer,. “The HIMSS Stage 7 designation underscores our commitment to patient-centered clinical quality and safety through the use of advanced clinical information systems. The site visit with the HIMSS Analytics officials gave us an opportunity to share our experiences and to recognize our staff and physicians for their work with our patients.”

TriHealth, one of the fastest-growing health systems in Greater Cincinnati, has more than 500 doctors and 11,000 other employees. It operates four hospitals (Good Samaritan in University Heights, Bethesda North in Montgomery, Bethesda Butler in Hamilton and TriHealth Evendale) and more than 130 other locations.

“This is an excellent deployment of an enterprise EHR that proved to be transformational,” said John P. Hoyt, FACHE, FHIMSS, executive vice president HIMSS Analytics.“TriHealth has been an early adopter of technologies that are just beginning to become mainstream.  This is truly an organization that enthusiastically embraces technology to support their core mission.”

TriHealth will be recognized at the 2015 Annual HIMSS Conference & Exhibition onApril 12-16, 2015, in Chicago, Ill.

Visit the HIMSS Analytics web site for more information on the Stage 7 award and Stage 7 Ambulatory Award.

About HIMSS Analytics

HIMSS Analytics collects, analyzes and distributes essential health IT data related to products, costs, metrics, trends and purchase decisions.  It delivers quality data and analytical expertise to healthcare delivery organizations, IT companies, governmental entities, financial, pharmaceutical and consulting companies. Visit www.himssanalytics.org.

HIMSS Analytics is a part of HIMSS, a cause-based, global enterprise that produces health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share the cause of transforming health and healthcare through the best use of IT.  HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

August 4, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

In Response to ICD-10 Delay, WEDI Proposes Aggressive Transition Roadmap

Medicare and Medicaid readiness transparency, expedited testing and expanded education identified as high-priority needs

RESTON, Va. — June 05, 2014 — The Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI), the nation’s leading nonprofit authority on the use of health IT to create efficiencies in healthcare information exchange, submitted a letter to the Dept. of Health and Human Services (HHS) outlining a high-level ICD-10 transition roadmap. The letter, written in response to the recent one year ICD-10 delay mandated by the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014, details the impact of the postponement on healthcare stakeholders and defines recommended action steps to minimize continued disruption to the healthcare industry.

In the letter, several action steps are detailed including:

  • Ensure Medicare and Medicaid readiness transparency
  • Expedite, supporting and expanding industry testing
  • Expand provider education and support
  • Target outreach to non-covered entities
  • Conduct or support limited pilots
  • Establish clear milestones and track readiness

“WEDI and our industry partners believe that these recommendations provide a framework that we can work towards in order to ensure the successful ICD-10 transition,” said Devin Jopp, Ed.D., WEDI president and CEO. “It is critical that HHS work with private industry to establish credibility in a new compliance date by focusing on critical issues such as readiness transparency, comprehensive testing, and augmented education. Absent these actions, we are concerned that implementation of the code sets will continue to be protracted, adding needless administrative burden and cost to the industry.”

In development of the ICD-10 Transition Roadmap, WEDI convened an industry ICD-10 Summit on April 30, 2014 in Reston, Va, that featured participation of more than two hundred industry stakeholders. The Summit was a collaborative event co-sponsored by the Professional Association of Healthcare Office Management (PAHCOM), Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and the American Academy of Professional Coders (AAPC).

Read the full letter and learn about the developments from WEDI’s ICD-10 Summit which influenced this communication to HHS.

About WEDI

The Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) is the leading authority on the use of health IT to improve healthcare information exchange in order to enhance the quality of care, improve efficiency, and reduce costs of our nation’s healthcare system. WEDI was formed in 1991 by the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) and was designated in the 1996 HIPAA legislation as an advisor to HHS. WEDI’s membership includes a broad coalition of organizations, including: hospitals, providers, health plans, vendors, government agencies, consumers, not-for-profit organizations, and standards development organizations. To learn more, visit www.wedi.org and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

June 5, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Most Regional Extension Centers Plan to Remain Open for Business

CHICAGO (April 30, 2014) – The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) introduced Regional Extension Centers (RECs) into the healthcare lexicon with these state-based and regional organizations designed to help eligible providers achieve meaningful use (MU).

Funding for RECs from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) ends at the close of 2014, but respondents to the 2014 HIMSS Regional Extension Center Survey indicated they will continue to do business.  Results show:

  • 85 percent of respondents indicated they did not expect to close their doors;
  • 28 percent of the 36 executive respondents reported their funding ran out before the end of February 2014;
  • About three-quarters (72 percent) had applied for a no-cost extension of their ONC funding;
  • Nearly half are creating strategic partnerships with other organizations in their service area; and
  • Almost half reported that they have received state funding to maintain operations.

Conducted in December 2013 and January 2014, the survey included 39 respondents representing 37 REC organizations.  Almost half of the respondents (46 percent) said they were President/Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director of the REC with another 13 percent of respondents noted they were the REC Director. Other respondent titles included Director of IT/IS, VP of IT/IS, Manager of IT/IS, Chief Information Officer or staff-level IT/IS.  In addition, respondents are from 35 states with at least one respondent from all nine US census regions.

“According to our results, the survey respondents understand the need for and value of collaborative efforts with other RECS and organizations to support and be part of the services they offer,” says Lisa Gallagher, vice president, technology solutions, HIMSS. Gallagher explained that 92 percent of the respondents indicated they are focused on financial sustainability for their REC, with various funding options and educational support from ONC/CMS cited to help maintain the services offered.  “The survey respondents also offer a positive outlook for their REC as they continue focus on future endeavors.”

By the Numbers…Regional Extension Centers 

  • 147,000 providers now enrolled with a REC.
  • More than 124,000 (of these 147,000 providers) are now live with an EHR; 70,000 have demonstrated meaningful use.
  • 872 critical access hospitals/SRHs received incentive payments for meaningful use.

Sourcehttp://www.healthit.gov/providers-professionals/regional-extension-centers-recs

Read the complete report of the 2014 HIMSS Regional Extension Center Survey.

About HIMSS

HIMSS is a global, cause-based, not-for-profit organization focused on better health through information technology (IT). HIMSS leads efforts to optimize health engagements and care outcomes using information technology.

HIMSS is a cause-based, global enterprise producing health IT thought leadership, education, events, market research and media services around the world. Founded in 1961, HIMSS encompasses more than 52,000 individuals, of which more than two-thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations across the globe, plus over 600 corporations and 250 not-for-profit partner organizations, that share this cause.  HIMSS, headquartered in Chicago, serves the global health IT community with additional offices in the United States, Europe, and Asia.

May 1, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.