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Looking at “Negative Space” to Drive Positive ROI in Healthcare

Looking at “Negative Space” to Drive Positive ROI in Healthcare

Paul Henon,Healthcare Director

October

25

Friday

25 October 2013

10:54AM

Prospects weighing IT buying decisions

When I see prospects weighing IT buying decisions, I am always surprised by those that focus exclusively on what “new” functionality they will enjoy. This is certainly important. But an experienced architect will realize that this is counter-intuitive. Don’t look for space, but look for negative space.

Similarly, one of the main benefits I see in hospitals evaluating application migration are the headaches they take out and not only the new capabilities they will gain. Decommissioning older applications is a common example. More benefits of application retirement can be found in this Whitepaper.

In one of my client cases, two hospitals are merging and each hospital has its own record system for just about everything. They need to think 1) to migrate both the older systems to a new one, or 2) create a third system and tap back into the older two. As they bring together important patient records from across these systems, there are a lot of costs and complex processes that they can leave behind – the counterintuitive savings.

Where do we find the “negative space” that represents savings and benefits for them?

  • Should they keep the older systems, they need to keep alive an obsolete client for when they might need to go back to them.
  • After they remember how to use the client and actually find the information, they still need to see if the information can be moved into the new system.
  • Meanwhile, they keep on paying maintenance for the software, which grows older, and they need to pay for the IT staff that keep those apps alive.

With Electronic Patient Archiving, they can forget about all that. They can extract all the information and place it into an archive in a legible and accessible way. They can still keep the information, and the cost of the archives will, to a large extent, be paid by the savings of decommissioning those older environments. The information can be kept.

As for the lucky patients who visit one of these well-run hospitals, they can enjoy better and faster access to their records. In our case, the newly merged hospital brought together three hospitals sites that formerly were not connected with one system. Now, a patient can go to an ER at any hospital site, and still access their X-rays, lab result, charts, etc. quickly and immediately. Since older systems kept all the notes their physicians made over the years as well as reports from other hospitals, the patient can have the benefit of avoiding unnecessary examinations and start up treatment quickly.

I hope this sheds some light on the many factors to consider when you are thinking of content management. I welcome your feedback and comments below.

 

More insights on application decommissioning in this free Whitepaper.

 

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