Automating empathy a growing trend in US hospitals | Ed Marx comments on automating empathy | Report: Digital advancements create demand for health care CIOs

February 4, 2016
CHiME Healthcare CIO SmartBrief
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Automating empathy a growing trend in US hospitals
Automating empathy through the use of messaging technology offers a cheaper and easier way for providers to keep in touch with their patients before and after undergoing clinical procedures. Among the companies involved in the trend is HealthLoop, which has developed a messaging technology that is capable of enhancing care satisfaction levels and cutting readmission rates by encouraging patients to adhere to their treatment plans. HealthLoop's technology, designed to allow physicians to transmit daily mails with information tailored to the present conditions of their patients, is currently being tested at the Cleveland Clinic and other facilities across the US. Kaiser Health News (2/2)
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Ed Marx comments on automating empathy
Ed Marx, NYC HHC IT leadership team
Is it the thought that counts? I think so. Automating empathy is not a bad thing, so long as it is never a substitute for what patients crave: genuineness. There are times when nothing can replace the need for a comforting touch, a look in the eye or words spoken. Most times, noninvasive synchronous communications such as e-mail are more than adequate.

I leverage automation tools that help me with empathy and general care. I could never remember all of my employees' birthdays, but I have my Outlook set up to alert me a few days in advance so I can best prepare. I have a daily reminder to write out thank-you cards to those who did something nice. I don't think it means that I am not genuine in my care for my people, but it is a way to make sure I show appreciation that might otherwise get lost among the "urgent" matters that seem to pop up out of nowhere.

Likewise, I think automating empathy can be a nice supplement for a busy practice. As long as the kind of behavior that is automated is in alignment with stated values, I think it is completely appropriate. We are all busy, so receiving a text or e-mail from a provider who is checking in on me is flattering and shows respect. It certainly beats the alternative out there practiced by most: silence.
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Report: Digital advancements create demand for health care CIOs
Almost half of health care life sciences companies surveyed in an IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics report said they have hired CIOs in the past three years because of increasing digital health innovations. The report also said new data and digital innovation posts were created by over 80% of the firms in that time period. However, CIOs were part of the executive team in less than 25% of companies surveyed. (2/3)
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Do passwords really protect your PDF?
Read this infographic to find out how password protection failures can make you:
• Lose data by people sharing passwords with others, especially through email.
• Lack the ability of knowing if an unauthorized person has read your files.
• Have PDFs with passwords that are easy to crack within minutes.
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VCs expected to make huge investments in on-demand health care
Venture firms will pour an estimated $1 billion into on-demand health care companies by next year, an Accenture report says. Outside of transportation, health care is the fastest-growing sector for on-demand platforms. Forbes (2/2)
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Premier given access to Medicare information by CMS
The CMS has allowed Premier to access the privacy-protected Medicare information available on its Virtual Research Data Center. The database will be leveraged by Premier to develop approaches to improve care quality and contain costs. (2/3)
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Neb. provider reaches Stage 7 in HIMSS Analytics EMRAM
HIMSS has awarded Stage 7 in its EMR Adoption Model to Nebraska Medicine for its use of an integrated EMR system from Epic and other health IT tools to advance patient care. The health system has joined the other 4.1% of US hospitals that have reached the stage. Healthcare IT News (2/1)
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How data will make you healthier.
Analytics improve disease treatment outcomes and care provider efficiency. But these applications are only the beginning: Healthcare organizations are hard at work developing ways for data to improve your health on a daily basis.
Regulatory & Legislative
Health organizations air privacy issues concerning drafted EHR, health IT measure
Health groups have raised privacy and security concerns regarding the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee's recently drafted health IT and EHR legislation. The National Partnership for Women & Families recommended that the definition of interoperability and information blocking be changed to resolve barriers that could affect patients' ability to access, transmit and receive their EHRs. CHIME sent the committee a letter to encourage it to ensure that "stringent privacy and security standards" be implemented to secure clinical data from potential cyberattacks. Health IT Security (2/3)
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Lawmaker proposes increased telehealth access for Medicare
A measure was introduced by Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, on Wednesday to boost Medicare's use of remote patient monitoring and telehealth services. The Creating Opportunities Now for Necessary and Effective Care Technologies for Health Act would remove obstacles to reimbursements for telehealth. Healthcare Informatics online (2/3)
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Market Focus
Doctor on Demand boosts patients' access to telepsychiatry services
The Doctor on Demand telehealth service now offers patients access to board-certified psychiatrists, augmenting existing psychology services. "Mental health is a vital area, where there may be the most need for telemedicine," said Dr. Donovan Wong, the company's clinical director of emotional and mental health. Access is a particular problem in rural areas, he said, but even in urban areas, patients may have to wait weeks for care. Healthcare IT News (2/2)
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Health Information Executive's Guide to Cyber Security
Safeguarding and securing cyberspace is critical as we increase our reliance on technology. Effective cybersecurity is crucial as threats and cyberattacks continue to rise and more advanced technology is deployed. This Forum, being held April 6 in San Francisco, is designed for CIOs and information security executives who are working to ensure their organization's valued data assets and technology are protected before a cyberattack occurs. The Forum explores cybersecurity challenges and strategies, the latest trends, health care-focused solutions and lessons from the field. Learn more.
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CIO Forum -- the clock is ticking
The CHIME-HIMSS CIO Forum is just one month away. This year's theme is: Exceptional Leaders Transforming Healthcare: The Journey Continues. Helping illuminate the path is a stellar lineup of speakers, including Thomas Goetz, Jack Uldrich and Gary Loveman. The meeting is on Monday, February 29, at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas and is only open to CHIME members. Have you registered yet? Learn more.
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The thing that makes you say, 'I want to do something' -- that is the beginning of talent."
-- Stella Adler,
actress and teacher
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