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Provider CIOs pay tribute to Farzad Mostashari, M.D., look to future

In a SearchHealthIT-CHIME interview series, we look back at the tenure of Farzad Mostashari, M.D. -- and ahead to his successor's toughest challenges.

SearchHealthIT and the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) have collaborated to bring you a series of interviews with CHIME fellows to preview National Health IT Week in Washington, D.C., Sept. 16-20, and offer thoughts on the legacy of outgoing National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, M.D. This article is the introduction to the interview series.

Russell BranzellRussell Branzell

Last month, National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, M.D., revealed intentions to leave his post in the near future. This month, the country's top healthcare provider CIOs will gather in Washington, D.C., to bring their concerns to legislators, compare experiences and rub elbows with CMS and ONC leaders under the auspices of National Health IT Week.

No doubt, a foremost thought in CIOs' minds will be their difficult road ahead as they take on IT-heavy initiatives related to meaningful stages 2 and 3 (including major EHR system upgrades certified to 2014 standards), ICD-10 implementation, HIPAA patient data security compliance, and support for the Affordable Care Act's changing payment models. All of these are hitting now or will soon be, and each of them poses complex problems that must be solved.

Under the leadership, guidance and direction of Dr. Farzad Mostashari we have seen tremendous strides in the digital transformation of the entire health sector.

Russell Branzell,
president and CEO, CHIME

Healthcare CIOs will also likely pause a moment to reflect on Mostashari's accomplishments in his two-plus years as coordinator and two more years serving as principal deputy national coordinator under David Blumenthal, M.D.

"Under the leadership, guidance and direction of Dr. Farzad Mostashari we have seen tremendous strides in the digital transformation of the entire health sector," said Russell Branzell, CHIME president and CEO. "His enthusiasm and collaborative approach engaged all key stakeholders in the ownership of the critical advancement strategy, setting the stage and charting a path for the next segment of this journey. He will be greatly missed both personally and professionally."

We sat down with three provider CIOs and CHIME luminaries, who will be participating in various National Health IT Week meetings and initiatives, to find out where they think Mostashari made his greatest impact and to hear what problems they hope to solve with their D.C. sojourns.

Next: An interview with CHIME fellow Charles Christian, longtime contributor to Indiana's health information exchange efforts and current vice president and CIO of St. Francis Hospital in Columbus, Ga.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Don Fluckinger, news director, or contact @DonFluckinger on Twitter.

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