Experts share views on how scribes affect EHR innovation | Ed Marx comments on scribes and EHRs | Halamka: CIOs should take the long view on innovation
February 26, 2015
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Experts share views on how scribes affect EHR innovation
The continuous growth of the medical scribe industry could be preventing vendors from improving EHR functionality, said George Gellert, associate system chief medical information officer at CHRISTUS Health, and his co-authors in a December article in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The article maintains that scribes provide a "workaround" to EHR problems, reducing pressure on vendors to improve EHR usability. On the other hand, ScribeAmerica CEO Michael Murphy noted that medical scribes play an important role in the industry by enabling doctors to focus more on caring for their patients instead of EHR data entry. Health Data Management (2/24)
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Ed Marx comments on scribes and EHRs
Ed Marx, SVP and CIO, Texas Health Resources
Ed Marx, SVP and CIO, Texas Health Resources
Most agree that we want and need to see more extensible innovation with our electronic health records. It is one thing to implement and optimize, but how do we accelerate innovation within this powerful tool? Provider input, vendor collaboration and leadership demand are critical.

While I understand the argument, I think it is too simple to blame a lack of innovation on the use of medical scribes. As with any other tool, you can get lazy, but it still requires a choice. Scribe-using physicians I have shadowed still have strong opinions about what works and does not work with their EHRs and are not shy about sharing their thoughts on improvements.

While I would focus on clinician input, a willingness on the part of vendors to continue to make improvements and spend on R&D is equally valuable. I know some vendors that routinely have developers shadow clinicians in hopes of transforming the tool. Certainly the competitive marketplace should be a catalyst for differentiation through innovation. Finally, leaders must demand more from their clinicians and vendors to spur continuous improvement and innovation. Offering to serve as sponsors, applying resources, conducting collaborative research and volunteering beta opportunities in live environments will help.
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Halamka: CIOs should take the long view on innovation
CIOs wrestling with security threats, regulatory burdens, shifting reimbursement models and other challenges should take a long-term view when it comes to health IT innovation, writes Dr. John Halamka, chairman of the Healthcare Information Technology Standards Panel and CIO at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Among the innovations Halamka believes could help health care organizations in the long run are secure cloud-hosted storage technology to enhance patients' access to their records, social networking tools such as Facebook to support professional collaboration and sharing, and secure, enterprise-grade texting for members of the care team. (2/25)
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WEBINAR: Partners In Health Uses Cloud to Improve Global Health
As communication systems become expensive to maintain and increasingly deficient, evolving cloud-based technology is adopted by many healthcare organizations. Join us on March 4th for a webinar sharing how and why Partners In Health moved to the Microsoft Cloud, giving them a reliable and secure communications toolbox to improve the quality of health to underserved populations. Register today!
Technology Spotlight
ICD-10 end-to-end testing resulted in 81% claim acceptance
The CMS accepted 81% of around 1,500 test claims submitted by 661 billing firms and providers during ICD-10 end-to-end testing held Jan. 26 to Feb. 3. An analysis found that 13% of claims were not accepted due to errors not related to ICD-10 coding, 3% were denied because of invalid use of an ICD-10 code and 3% were not accepted due to invalid use of an ICD-9 code. Healthcare Informatics online (2/25)
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DOD cuts PricewaterhouseCoopers from EHR contract
PricewaterhouseCoopers has been eliminated as a contender for the contract to create a new EHR for the Defense Department. The bid would have used the open-source code for the VistA system of the Department of Veterans Affairs. PwC had teamed with systems integrator General Dynamics Information Technology and EHR vendors Medsphere and DSS on the bid and had recently announced a partnership with Google as well. The contract will run for 10 years and is expected to be worth $11 billion. Modern Healthcare (tiered subscription model) (2/24)
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5 tips for managing negative online comments
The Internet gives your customers a voice online, but what can you do when that voice is yelling negative comments? With 5 tips, you can learn how to positively respond and help direct the conversation. Read the article and learn the 5 ways to respond positively.

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Management & Operation
Zix to secure Cincinnati provider's emails, health data
Zix was tapped by Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center to encrypt its e-mails and protect patient health data. The company uses its ZixDirectory e-mail encryption network to ensure that e-mails between member organizations are transmitted in a secure manner. (2/24)
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Texas hospitals use communications platform to streamline nurses' workflow
Vocera confirmed that its communication system was implemented in Emerus hospitals in Texas to streamline the workflow of telemetry nurses and cut patient wait times. The platform will allow telemetry nurses to be remotely alerted about their patients' conditions, eliminating the need for them to check repeatedly at work stations, which could save time and positively affect the health of patients. (2/25)
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Featured Press Releases
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Telehealth tool makes in-network specialist consultations possible
A tablet computer specifically developed to connect specialists in the same hospital network was recently unveiled by American Well. Among the Telemed Tablet's key features are the option to conduct live video conferences and the ability for users to know when other specialists in the network are available. (2/24)
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Telehealth firm partners with PokitDok to improve visit, payment process
Doctor on Demand is partnering with PokitDok to streamline the telemedicine visit and payment process for Doctor on Demand users by eliminating the process of connecting them to insurers. The partnership allows Doctor on Demand to use PokitDok's suite to enable telehealth users to easily identify services that are covered by their insurance. (2/25)
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Building Workplace Trust 2015
Interaction Associates' 6th annual research study tracking trust on the job, Building Workplace Trust, is out, and more than half of employees surveyed give their organizations low marks for trust and leadership. Yet this year's findings again point to how high trust leads to better outcomes and financial results — and even boosts innovation.

Size up your IT strategy with the 2015 Most Wired Survey
Health Care's Most Wired Survey and Benchmarking Study has reached the midway point. If you haven't already, now is the time to participate. The Most Wired Survey, which recognizes the nation's Most Wired hospitals and health systems, helps organizations measure their progress in the implementation and use of information technology. The Most Wired Survey is conducted annually and is sponsored by the American Hospital Association, CHIME and Hospitals & Health Networks. Take the 2015 Most Wired Survey today.
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CHIME15 call for track session proposals now open
Members of CHIME and the CHIME Foundation are invited to share their knowledge, insight and expertise with the industry's leading CIOs and health care IT executives at this year's Fall CIO Forum. Sixteen peer-selected presentations will be featured across four tracks during the CHIME15 program on Oct. 15 and 16. The deadline to submit a proposal is 11:59 p.m. ET on Sunday, April 26. Learn more.
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