Post-HIMSS 2016: Settled Dust & Workflow Friendliness
It’s been long enough now that the 2016 post-HIMSS dust has settled. Monitoring each and every one of the showtime products, vendors, events, and such isn’t possible, nor is monitoring all of the post-HIMSS analysis that inevitably follows. Add to that the fact that at this time of year, and at this year’s HIMSS, I have barely had time to breathe, no less stay up on the blogosphere and email blasts, and I admit to feeling a little not-so-in-touch with the usual pre-, post-, and intra-HIMSS hoopla.
However, this year seems different. It seems there’s less rave and more yawn. Maybe it’s just my somewhat disconnectedness, but maybe it’s that there just wasn’t quite as much to get excited about this year. That settled dust seems to have gathered on my EHR brain.
Or, perhaps, it’s that we’re moving from the entrepreneurially-dominated, disruptive-type early phase of HIT adoption into the more sedentary and, well, dull phase of incremental HIT advancement, such as in Gartner’s Hype Cycle “Plateau of Productivity.”
If this is true, then it wouldn’t be a big surprise that while the HIMSS bacchanalia is as big or bigger than ever, the upshot hype would be somewhat less adrenalin-inducing.
Given my schedule, my rather poor connectivity of late, and the above, I thought I’d wait until after all the dust had settled to see what rose to a radar blip that might be worth checking into. And, a couple of things that really floated my HIT boat did ping the scanner, though both are definitely more incremental advances than cool new tool tech. Perhaps they caught my attention because both are heavy on near-and-dear-to-my-heart workflow-friendliness, but thank goodness for such advances!
The first is the new “Quippe Clinical Lens” from the folks at Medicomp Systems. If you didn’t make it by any of their now-annual Jeopardy-like events (“Quipstar” as they call them), then you missed out on a very clinician-friendly, new middleware tool that any provider would enjoy, especially docs, nurses, etc. who provide care for multi-problem patients, or who see patients with multiple providers, or who just like to be able to find truly relevant information with as little fuss and muss as possible.
Providers – you know how difficult it can often be to find what you need in long patient charts, voluminous problem lists, extensive medication lists, and laboriously lengthy lab histories. Even with EHRs, finding relevant bits and pieces of info amidst the ones and zeroes can often be about as problematic as it was with paper, despite the notion that digitized records are supposedly so much better than paper charts for information manipulation and retrieval. With Clinical Lens integrated into your EHR, data finding becomes what it should be in a digitized world.
Pick a problem, pick a drug, pick something you want to know more about, and Clinical Lens immediately shows its clinical savvy via massive mappings between SNOMED-CT, Medcin, HL-7, LOINC, Rx-Norm, ICD-10, CPT, etc. to put related data right to your eyes. Medicomp provides an “easy to use SDK” allowing your EHR vendor to fully integrate this tech into your current system. Imagine not having to leave your well-rehearsed current workflow, yet now being able to immediately find related, relevant data simply by highlighting one particular data element. Very, very provider-friendly!
The other really cool HIT “wowzie woozie” I’ve seen of late actually didn’t come via HIMSS; in fact, I don’t think they even participated in Vegas. But, they did connect with me during the post-HIMSS period and I loved what they’re doing so much, I couldn’t help but include it in my post-HIMSS considerations.
InLight EHR, from the folks at Pri-Med, has been making great strides since it launched last year. They take their vision from HIT grandfather Lawrence Weed, MD and put the problem-oriented medical record (POMR) front and center. Any physician alive today will attest to training in the POMR format; it’s a standard for medical documentation and truly “a way doctors think.” (Virtually every EHR/EMR out there claims to “work the way doctors think” – virtually none of them do.)
Not only does InLight organize all information – labs, meds, orders, notes, referrals, etc. – around the patient problem list, but it does so within a very eye-friendly, Web 2.0-sort of way. Very easy to use.
As if this weren’t enough, they have also acquired the IP behind the very best patient portal I have ever seen – my dear, sort-of-departed konciergeMD. InLight now calls it “Thrive,” and though it hasn’t yet been deployed, I was able to see a sneak peek. I can verify that it is in very good hands! (Still the best looking, most patient-friendly, and workflow-savvy patient portal I’ve ever seen.)
Such workflow-friendly and/or -enhancing tools as the ones above may be putting a little hype back into the HIT Plateau of Productivity. (They certainly have blown the settled dust off my EHR-frustrated brain!)
From the trenches…
“When the dust settles and the pages of history are written, it will not be the angry defenders of intolerance who have made the difference. The reward will go to those who dared to step outside the safety of their privacy in order to expose and rout the prevailing prejudices.” – Bishop John Shelby Spong
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, sits on the board of directors of the Ohio Health Information Partnership, and is the semi-proud author of “Monsters Don’t Fart!”