Health Care IT Systems

Fundamental Duties and Characteristics of the CIO and CTO

With the fast growth of technology, most of the health care organization has adopted the use of healthcare information technologies. In this department of health information technology, there are various personnel that undertake crucial roles in the activities related to information technology. The activities include customization of software to implement and maintain a network for the efficient system back up. Further, the healthcare information technology has initiated the incorporation of other activities such as managing information, technology, and many others. The paper discusses the technology and the health care system conveying that use of technology will improve the quality of care in that; use of technology will enable health care providers to deliver effectively quality services.

The Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer are among various staffs that are assigned different tasks related to IT. To begin with, the CIO is the superior employee in the department of health information in an organization. Apart from being the manager, CIO provides leadership in the development and implementation of information technology initiatives in a healthcare organization. As such, he delegates, supervises and recruits all computer specialists as well as its workers.

Additionally, CIO designs, implements, and maintains network infrastructures for both local and wide area connectivity and isolated areas. Moreover, this person manages daily activities of the department of information management such as directing staffs for maintenance of administrative computing, telecommunications and user services. The position of CIO allows the person to assess all technology projects and to take the appropriate action as well as allocate sufficient funds in them; hence, this individual associates closely with the project manager for optimal allocation of technology resources.

However, some characteristics are required for a CIO to possess in order to handle the responsibilities successfully. For instance, he or she must have the ability to work with the vast community of the facility to realize healthcare objectives. This person should be in a position to concentrate and mobilize technology with the purpose to achieve the strategic goals of the healthcare organization.

A Chief Technology Officer (CTO) is an individual who superintends technology as well as creates a relevant policy regarding it. Except for overseeing technology, CTO participates in strategic governance committee working closely with the clinical and administrative leadership. Another responsibility is to develop and lead structure strategies and technology roadmap by the healthcare goals and objectives. Additionally, CTO collaborates with the Chief Information Officer to establish primarily IT vision and strategy.

Essentially, CTO needs to have unique characteristics that make them suitabe for this position. First, they present the experience of best practices which support standards, procedures, policies, and performance management. Secondly, these individuals have a deep understanding of the present IT trends. Besides, in a healthcare organization, CTO plays a significant role in ensuring employee and patient satisfaction. As such, he/she spends time to know the facility as well as the present technology need, thus making an informed decision about technology. CTO also helps in implementing the technology and in employee training to ensure the workers acquire necessary skills required to operate technological equipment with ease. If the employees are satisfied with their working conditions, it results in higher patient satisfaction.

Developing Technologies

In the past few years, technology has been growing at a tremendous rate, and as a result, consecutively affected healthcare system at large. This impact has left the healthcare organizations with no choice other than adopting the growing technology to enhance the quality and reduce the cost of health services. Such techniques include wearable technology Google Glass which is viewed as a tool to improve the ways in which healthcare practitioners interact with patients. This would lead to the increased patient’s satisfaction as well as to making doctors more efficient at performing their duties because of the added communication level between the parties. Additionally, Google Glass creates an opportunity to apply telemedicine allowing medical professionals to provide medical care from a distance.

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Another developing technology that healthcare system should adopt is hybrid operation room. Basically, it involves outfitting the traditional operation room with the advanced medical technology, which results in providing adequate care to patients. Buntin, Burke, Hoaglin, & Blumenthal (2011) argued that technology advancement has helped to reduce trauma and the hospitalization period. Moreover, it has contributed to improving the patient’s experience such as advanced imaging technology which, on the other hand, has helped to perform high-risk invasive cardiac procedures.

Preventing Misuse of Information and Data Privacy

Healthcare facility handles data and information which is sensitive and should be protected from unauthorized personnel (Vest & Gamm, 2010). The people who deal with the health care information should ensure confidentiality and privacy of protected health information; thus, administrative, technical and physical safeguards should be put in place while still allowing access to the health providers for continued care and management of the patients. Moreover, electronic medical records have incorporated various components within the system security guidelines and procedures. Authentication process includes verification of the user’s identity to a computer, and it applies the use of biometrics, passwords, and smart cards.

One more mmethod worth mentioning is data integrity. It ensures that medical information that has been transferred has arrived at the next authorized party and has not been changed. Data integrity has been achieved through the application of methods such as message digest and intrusion detection for distinguishing any data alterations. These methods of data protection have been applied to various organizations, for example to International General Secondary School Education which uses passwords for restricting access to information by the unauthorized parties.

Training of Healthcare Providers on Technology Use

With the integration of technology into the field of medicine, health organizations have introduced training strategy to equip health providers with the skills required in operating technological equipment. Thus, healthcare setup has adopted simulation as a training strategy. This technique involves the use of a representation of actual model by another. It enables the healthcare providers to respond positively to a situation they are in or are about to experience. With the increased use of technology in the healthcare, simulation training offers an excellent learning atmosphere in the students’ curriculum as well as in the healthcare professionals practice. American Nurses Association is one of the health care bodies that use simulation to enhance skills and to strengthen healthcare provision.

Practices for Effective IT Alignment and Strategic Planning Initiatives

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Effective strategic planning, execution, and the aptitude to align strategy with an organization are those factors that influence it the success (Lee & Schniederjans, 2011). In order to ensure adequate IT alignment and strategic planning initiatives, a healthcare organization must employ best practices such as identification of organizational need. This particular strategy is used to define the needs of the organization that is requiring IT enablement. The next step is the creation of IT vision which focuses on identifying IT capability, process, strategy, and infrastructure required to meet organizational priorities. This practice also lays the guidelines that drive the formation of IT capability.

Finally, assessing current alignment is a crucial method to compare the current IT capability with the projected IT capability. Essentially, the practice involves three dimensions: assets, investments, and organization. To illustrate, Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance was found applying these best practices to ensure that all organizational portions were aligned.

In conclusion, this essay discussed technology and health care systems with the aim to convey the idea that the application of technology will in time change the health care workforce by improving efficiency, which will allow the physicians to provide more care to the patients. Additionally, it will increase an opportunity for the patients living in remote settings to receive medical care.

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