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Addressing EHR resistance, gender bias, and the pursuit of free data at HIMSS 2016

by John W. Mitchell, Senior Correspondent | March 02, 2016
Business Affairs Health IT Population Health

“There wasn’t as much pay difference between genders in frontline IT positions,” said Pettit. “It was more at the senior executive level.” He theorized that in the nonprofit sector there is more of a trend for female executives to have worked their way up through the ranks over time from non-executive positions.

“I also think that maybe there is more altruism among this female group, which is not untypical for the nonprofit sector,” said Pettit. In some cases, he speculated, this may prompt female executives to accept lower salaries.

The group also touched on the position of CMS that health systems should share data among one another, rather than attempt to charge other health care providers to access their data.

“I understand that the health systems have spent money to build these patient electronic health record platforms,” said Selva. “But the data has to be set free because that’s what’s best for patients.”

Smith also presented the top five organization priorities for HIMSS members in the coming year. At the top of the list was financial viability. Don Reichert, Vice President and Chief Information Officer at MetroHealth System in Ohio noted that by working with vendor partners and replacing legacy IT systems as quickly as possible, they have been able to keep their IT costs flat for the past three years.

“We’ve been able to improve our IT return-on-investment to 3.2 percent of operating revenue, which is below the national average of 4.7 percent,” he reported.

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