Industry Watch - March/April 2020

Feb. 27, 2020
Recent news from around the world of health IT


Intermountain’s Marc Probst Receives CHIME-HIMSS CIO of the Year Award

Marc Probst, vice president and CIO of the Salt Lake City, Utah-based Intermountain Healthcare, has been recognized by two leading industry associations—the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) and the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS)—as the 2019 John E. Gall Jr. CIO of the Year.

The award is given annually to a CIO who has shown significant leadership and commitment to the healthcare industry during his or her career. The recipient is selected jointly by the boards of CHIME and HIMSS. Last year’s winner was Ed Kopetsky, CIO of Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford and Stanford Children’s Health.

According to CHIME and HIMSS officials, for more than 30 years, Probst has been at the forefront of change in the healthcare IT industry. “First as a partner with two large professional service organizations and later as CIO at Intermountain Healthcare, he has inspired those around him to think strategically and act boldly to improve health and care.”

Officials pointed out that when the federal government wanted a thought leader to help establish a policy framework, they selected Probst in 2009 to serve on the Federal Health IT Policy Committee, which helped develop health IT policies for the government. And when CHIME was poised for transformation and growth, the association’s members tuned to Probst to provide the vision and guidance. Indeed, Probst now serves on the CHIME Innovation Advisory Board. He previously served as chair of the CHIME Board of Trustees in 2016, chair of the CHIME Foundation Board in 2017 and chair of CHIME’s Public Policy Steering Committee in 2017.

CHIME President and CEO Russell Branzell said in a statement, “Marc has contributed to our community in countless ways. He has been instrumental in CHIME’s growth, domestically and internationally. Marc taught at our very first program in India and continues to be an ambassador for CHIME around the world. He piloted our first innovation initiative and helped make Intermountain the home for CHIME Innovation. The list goes on and on, and he has done this all while running a spectacular digital enterprise at Intermountain.”

HIMSS President and CEO Hal Wolf added, “Marc has been a transformation leader blazing the trail in advancing technology to improve health and care. His work exemplifies what it means to be a changemaker – an innovator who rigorously challenges the status quo and empowers others to follow suit in the journey to providing better health for everyone, everywhere.”

In an interview with Healthcare Innovation following the announcement, Probst, who is retiring this summer, noted that the industry is at an inflection point right now for CIOs as a collective group. He said he believes there are “two really important roles that the leaders in organizations are going to have to play”: the shift towards the strategic and the role of the operational expert in technology. “We can’t continue to be as big a drain on the finances of our organizations. We have to be able to shift money back into our organizations. I think there will be a bifurcation of roles,” he said.

Probst further added on the future of the CIO role, “I could see where some clinicians will become CIOs. But equally, the new CIO might be someone deeply involved at Google or Amazon or Microsoft. I don’t think it’s unique to clinicians; it’s more unique to understanding the platforms. And it will require an understanding of how we build and use systems. So there will be physicians who will take on that role, but also some non-clinicians. And the legacy CIOs in healthcare like me, who’ve been in it for 30-plus years now—that core technical skill set is not going to be as valued as it once was.”

Health Information Exchange

HIEs Increasingly Connecting With Community, Social Service Organizations, Survey Finds

Community health information exchanges (HIEs) are increasingly reporting connections with community and social service organizations and are moving significant volumes of data, according to the results of the first annual survey of HIEs by the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC).

They survey respondents included 81 percent of SHIEC members, a group consisting of nearly 80 HIEs across the U.S. and more than 100 other strategic business and technical members. Recently, SHIEC announced that 92 percent of the U.S. population is served by HIEs across the nation that are members of SHIEC.

Nearly all responding HIEs have partnered with one or more of the following community and social service organizations: correctional health, social service agencies, drug and alcohol treatment programs, first responders, school nurses or blood banks.

The responding SHIEC HIEs are exchanging 3.3 billion messages annually and delivering 453 million alerts of admissions, discharges and transfers (ADTs) to HIE participants to improve coordination of care, including nationwide HIE-to-HIE alerts through the Patient Centered Data Home (PCDH) initiative. In 2016, SHIEC member HIE’s came together to connect the nation through the Patient Centered Data Home Model, aiming to enable near-real time alerting about important clinical events.

Further regarding HIEs’ connection to whole communities and unique partners, 72 percent of SHIEC HIEs are partnering with first responders, 70 percent with correctional health facilities, and 58 percent each with social service agencies, drug and alcohol treatment programs, and dialysis centers, respectively.

Meanwhile, 66 percent of HIEs provide alerting and monitoring reports, 63 percent provide public health reports, while 44 percent provide electronic clinical quality measures and frequent flyer reporting, respectively. Just 27 percent of HIEs provide opiate monitoring, according to the survey results.

“The survey results demonstrate real progress for the SHIEC community,” according to Kelly Hoover Thompson, CEO of SHIEC. “These results not only demonstrate tangible progress toward interoperability in the sheer volume of alerts and transactions, they also underscore the value of the SHIEC community in supporting and gathering data from community and social service organizations that advance care for the whole patient,” Thompson said.

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