Mar 26

Georgia’s Health Information Technology Industry: Making A Difference Everyday

by Wayne W. Oliver, Executive Director, Patients for Fair Compensation        Originally published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on March 2014

health-info-techA couple of weeks ago, a group of health information technology leaders from around the state came to Atlanta to celebrate “Georgia Health Information Technology and High Tech Day at the Capitol.” Georgia State Senator Brandon Beach, Chairman of the Science & Technology Committee, welcomed over 100 Georgians to the State Capitol and talked about Georgia’s status as the nation’s “Health Information Technology Capitol.”

Georgia-based health information technology companies are a serious economic engine. The health IT industry generates more than $4 billion in revenue each year and provides over 15,000 jobs in Georgia. There are more than 186 health IT companies which call Georgia “home.”

And, the health IT industry in Georgia is growing. Georgia’s health IT businesses are growing at a phenomenal 40 percent rate, creating more jobs, more investment and more revenue for Georgia.

Georgia’s health IT industry boasts the likes of heavyweights McKesson Technology Solutions, Allscripts Health Solutions, MedAssets, Greenway Medical Technologies, Navicure and Jackson Healthcare. These companies are producing products and services which make healthcare more affordable and more efficient.

Additionally, Georgia health IT leaders are helping to improve patient safety and driving better patient outcomes. Electronic health record (EHRs) systems are being designed by companies like Greenway, Allscripts and McKesson to improve patient safety by helping doctors see medication prescribed by other physicians and alerting them to potential conflicts on a patient’s medical profile. EHRs can help physicians and hospitals significantly reduce avoidable medical errors.

But, Georgia health IT companies are also assisting in care coordination which also improve patient outcomes and improve efficiency. Platforms have been developed which help clinicians with accountable care organizations (ACOs) to make it easier to collaborate. These systems also help in the acquisition, management, and aggregation patient-centric data which enables doctors to provide better care for their patients. Care Logistics, a division of Jackson Healthcare, has developed one of the best centralized care coordination models to efficiently anticipate, prioritize, coordinate, schedule, prepare for and track all patient movement, care, services and transport within a hospital. The software provides care coordination of multiple patients, multiple physicians and multiple hospital departments. Additionally, Care Logistics solutions establish predictability and timeliness while improving workflow that provides better care coordination for patients and caregivers.

Georgia health IT companies are also developing innovative solutions to one of the healthcare industry’s toughest challenges: Interoperability. Helping hospitals using disparate EMR and EHR systems share patient information with each other continues to be challenge. Companies like McKesson, Alere, Cerner, and Epic Systems are tackling the issue head on. Alere, which has historically focused on mobile technology solutions and diagnostic tools, has developed software which connects hospitals with state and regional health information exchanges therefore helping hospitals meet important meaningful use requirements established by the federal government.

Georgia’s health IT industry is creating solutions for today’s complex healthcare environment. These solutions are saving lives, saving money, creating jobs and investments in Georgia, and creating a safer, more efficient and more dynamic healthcare system. Georgia’s health IT industry is making significant contributions everyday to improve the lives and health of patients everywhere.








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