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A Physician's Perspective: Meaningful Use of Health Technology

Mar 22 2012   12:47AM GMT

A month after HIMSS

Posted by: DrJosephKim

As I reflect on the HIMSS conference, I think about all the changes and innovations occurring in health IT. For one thing, I wonder if we will see ICD-10 delayed vs. implemented sooner. The physician community wants to delay ICD-10 for as long as possible because of the administrative burden they will face (and because they need to learn a new coding system that is much more complex). The health IT community wants to see ICD-10 implemented as soon as possible because they have developed solutions to help physicians and hospitals with ICD-10 and they want to sell these solutions and services. ICD-10 delay will only negatively impact their revenues this year.

I was also excited to see that HIMSS is growing in the mobile health or mHealth space. The acquisition of the mHealth Summit in December is one of the landmark steps that shows me that HIMSS is serious about becoming a leader in the mHealth industry. I wonder what type of impact this will have on all the other mobile health conferences and communities out there. Will they collaborate with mHIMSS or will they continue to operate independently? I anticipate that more local and regional mobile health meetings will attract HIMSS members who want to gain a better understanding of the rapidly evolving mHealth space.

Speaking of mHealth, what will be some of the major advances in the mHealth industry this year? One may think that a big focus area will be in electronic health records (EHRs), but we saw that Epocrates announced that they were abandoning their plans to develop an EHR. Meanwhile, physicians are expecting fully robust EHR capabilities on their mobile tablets where they can view, enter, and edit information and orders. CPOE may need to be renamed: MPOE for Mobile Physician Order Entry.

Another area that intrigued me this year was these Fitbit contests that were sponsored by various organizations. I had my Fitbit, so I tracked how many steps I was walking at HIMSS. I also entered one of those contests and won a digital pen! I think HIMSS converted me to be more devoted to my Fitbit and this small self-monitoring device has made me more engaged in the quantified self movement.

Finally, I’m grateful that some of those informal tweetups from HIMSS have continued in my geographic area. I’ve continued to meet with several physician executives (mainly when I’ve been in NYC) and we’ve continued our health IT discussions and we have grown our social communities by inviting others to our tweetups.

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