Think you already have a full plate? Think again. Just wait until you’re responsible for making sure most of the key medical devices in your hospital can talk to your EMR. As device-EMR integration becomes the norm, hospitals are likely to rely more heavily on leaders with both IT and clinical credentials, according to a new study by HIMSS.
As their EMR installations mature, hospitals are beginning to integrate a bunch of standard devices like fetal monitors, anesthesia machines, balloon pumps, cardiac output monitors and ventilators. To manage this process, hospitals are increasingly shifting responsibility to chief medical informatics officers and chief nursing informatics officers, HIMSS researchers note.
Even if hospitals bring more clinicians into IT, however, medical device integration is no joke. It’s great to see them putting clinicians in place to nurture the development of their EMR, but it might have worked better if they did so, say, five years ago.
After all, integrating your hospital’s devices would be pretty complicated even if they ran on the same operating systems and used the same protocols as standard network devices, given the number you’ll have to manage. But they don’t, of course. Adding a clinician to the mix might help streamline the process, but we’ve still got one heck of an IT problem here.