Dear Digital Santa
Dear Digital Santa,
First, thank you so much for all the digital presents last year. They were really fun and most of them lasted several months before the next version or a completely updated model was released.
For 2013, I have a rather different wish list. I know you told me when I sat on your lap last Saturday at the mega-mall that you didn’t think you’d be able to deliver on most of these, but I still want to put in my official request. (Anything you can do might make up for that weird tukas fondle you tried to say was an accident. Didn’t know what to make of that, Santa, but if you deliver on these, I’m willing to forego consideration of any formal charges.)
That said, I’ve formalized my list. I’d like:
· Tablet and smartphone firmware and software that can upgrade for as long as the hardware still works
· A smartphone app that makes calls from people on otherwise great smartphones sound good so you don’t have to keep straining to hear through muffled mush
· An EHR app that can take excessively long, typically templated EHR reports sent from other systems and extract the truly relevant material (often one third to one tenth the length of the original)
· A way to get EHR vendors back to developing based upon intuitive creativity, not just dictated criteria that may or may not actually make a difference in healthcare outcomes someday
· An HIT governmental hierarchy that doesn’t keep edging toward where almost all government hierarchies end up: excessive bureaucracy piled so high on top of initial good intentions that it smothers the very systems it was designed to assist
· Healthcare IT people and healthcare delivery people speaking a mutually recognizable language where neither is so acronym-heavy that it makes the other feel stupid
· Promises and delivery – neither too big or too small, but juuuust right – as the cornerstones of HIT
· Interoperability that’s about true interoperable interactivity, not buzzwords and sales hype
· A year without buzzwords and sales hype – and maybe a year without sound bites, too
· Throughout HIT-dom, less flash and sizzle, more real and worthy
· Healthcare folks, either HIT-related or just in general, with more fondness for getting work done than fondness for their own egos
· A pocket version of Watson
· Key software, like word processing, email, and such, with real support from a real company that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg, that doesn’t keep costing me ad infinitum, and that can reside on my computer instead of an NSA-accessed cloud server somewhere
· A special app for all my devices that sends a fatal – or at least momentarily heart-stopping – shock to any hacker or identity thief who tries to access with my digital world
· Peace on earth
I’d probably take the last one as a substitute for all of the others, though I might have to think about it for a while.
I know you’ll do your best, Santa.
With holiday love, from the trenches…
“The season wouldn’t feel the same without people going out of their way to be offended by nothing.” – Jon Stewart
Dr. Gregg Alexander, a grunt in the trenches pediatrician at Madison Pediatrics, is Chief Medical Officer for Health Nuts Media, an HIT and marketing consultant, and sits on the board of directors of the Ohio Health Information Partnership (OHIP).