Most Wired, Most Meaningful, Most Important

Most Wired, Most Meaningful, Most ImportantNot too long ago, Hospital & Health Networks announced its 2011 Most Wired  awardees. Congratulations to those organizations who earned a spot on the list, especially the 72 Hyland customers. But there’s a bit of a catch.

According to a semi-official reader poll on HIStalk, 43 percent of respondents believe that ultimately, no one benefits from this kind of award. Also, 23 percent believe the CIOs benefit, 21 percent the magazines, 11 percent the vendors. As for patients? A whopping 2 percent.

I freely admit my cynicism. Blame my ten years in journalism. Blame genetically rooted New England pragmatism. Blame it on hype fatigue, advanced grouchiness or acquired skepticism syndrome. Whatever the underlying cause, I get it. And well, I’m with you.

I will say, however, that with this award in particular, we’ve seen movement from measuring what technologies organizations have just deployed, to actual usage of those technologies. The requirements to be on the list include seeing more outcomes-based metrics (although technology’s distinct role in those outcomes can be debatable).

And that’s the thing: It’s not about the award. In many ways, it’s not about the technology. Certainly, not exclusivity. The culture of safety and service that your technology supports, transforms and hopefully enhances – that’s the story. Technology should support your organization’s mission rather than become part of it. It should help fuel smarter, speedier decisions, enable more informed care and make life easier for patients and caregivers alike.

But what does this all mean to you? For those on the list, congratulations. Here’s hoping that this is just a marker on your path to delivering the best possible care and service. May there be more.

For those of you not on the list, maybe you don’t need to be. Maybe you don’t care about this sort of recognition. Maybe you already deliver superior care.

What I do ask, however, is that you consider those award recipients for a moment. Reach out to those that have earned a strong reputation for high standards of patient safety and service. Learn from their successes and mistakes. Consider their deployment strategies and technology partners. And most important, ask yourself how technology might help your organizations meet – and exceed – your goals.

Jared Blankenship

Jared Blankenship likes words. He likes to read them. He likes to write them. And he likes to share them. That pretty much explains his decade spent in business and technology journalism. Rich in complexity and perspectives, the healthcare industry eventually replaced journalism. Jared has spent almost six years in the healthcare IT, humbled daily by the new things he learns and grateful to those willing to share their knowledge. He counts his time spent volunteering in a local ICU and onsite participation in two major Cerner EMR deployments as his most valued. And he looks forward to adding more.

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