I’m in San Francisco this week at HealthBeat 2013, a new event that’s exploring “smart hospitals” and “smart practices” to help healthcare decision-makers identify the technologies transforming the industry. Trey Lauderdale moderated a session with Julie Vilardi, RN, MS, Executive Director of Clinical Informatics and Strategic Projects at Kaiser Permanente, and Darren Dworkin, Senior VP and CIO at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Here are some highlights:
As a practicing nurse for over 25 years, Julie spoke from experience when she painted a picture of the chaotic environment of hospital nursing.
“When you look at the nursing population, they are very smart and industrious, and used to a disjointed environment,” Julie said. “It takes some study and focus to bring in new technology, because if it doesn’t work they’re going to go back to their manual process. They need one standardized device that can be used for voice and text, that’s reliable and delivers a return on investment.”
Julie went on to discuss the importance of the user experience, and the expectations nurses have for slick consumer devices. “When you get inside the hospital walls,” she said, “those experiences are beginning to be the expectation, and we so don’t deliver it right now.”
When Trey asked about the trend toward BYOD, Darren acknowledged hospitals worry about the security issues of mobile technology, but emphasized that care providers have come to expect those technologies at work.
“A lot of our clinicians are using technology in other aspects of their life,” Darren said. “They want to know how come they can’t have a healthcare version of that.”
The answer, he said, is a balance between convenience and security. “If a device is not convenient enough, people will use a personal device that is not secure.”
As EMR begins to be integrated into mobile devices, user interface and security issues will only increase in importance. Both of today’s panel experts pointed to the need for hospitals to introduce nursing technology intelligently, with an end-to-end solution that works across hospital departments.