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What do CIOs focus on during economic challenges? Today we discuss.

Transcript

Today in health, it how 10 CEOs are addressing economic challenges. This article from Becker's thought I'd take a look at it. I actually haven't read it yet. Just looks very interesting. So we will read it together. My name is Phil Russell. I'm a former CIO for a 16 hospital system and creator of this week health instead of channels, dedicated to keeping health it staff current and engaged.

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CEO's. Our healthcare leaders first, how 10 it execs are confronting economic challenges. , by the way, if you have to tell people your healthcare leaders first, you're not, , it's just a principle. If you have to tell people, this is who I am, you're probably not. Right. So, , I don't, I don't like this terminology where we are getting in front of people saying, Hey, we're business leaders.

Hey, we're whatever. Hey, we should be at the table. , You earned your seat at the table, you prove your seat at the table, and you do that by leading, by establishing yourself as somebody that creates value and adds value to the healthcare, , organization, that system. I'm not looking to knock these, these 10 executives at all. I'm just saying that title sort of struck me.

Right out of the shoot, as you know, Hey, we're healthcare leaders first. , okay. , anyway, sorry, sorry. Tangent sidetracked. Coming off the weekend. Got to get back into the groove here. , Edward Lee MD, CIO Permanente medical group, Oakland, California. This is what he has to say about this to effectively, to effectively mitigate the risks of economic uncertainty.

It's important to have a comprehensive understanding of what others are doing. In the marketplace, evaluate your organization's strengths and identify significant areas of opportunity. This information should be examined in the context of your organization's core values. Putting these pieces together allows for strategic prioritization and focus investments that can help you weather the turbulence of the present and prepare you to thrive in the future. Again, , like that and nothing. I disagree with there, nothing pragmatic that I could really latch onto.

, as a, , as a healthcare leader, I, you know, as I read that absolutely true. , you know, know what your organization's really good at? Know what the opportunities are. , evaluate your projects in the context of what your core values are and what you guys do well for the, , community that you live in.

, again, , pretty high-level stuff. , you know, partially I'm looking for stuff that I can grab onto and say, oh, that's interesting. And that's something that we might be able to do here. So Eric Hammond as CIO, our Tesia. H R T E S I a New Mexico general hospital. We're no strangers to economic uncertainty. That's absolutely true.

I work in a hospital, situated in rural America, where we face economic instability every day. It was interesting. We had one of our 2 29 CIO round tables. And there was, , some rural health systems there. And there were some academic medical centers that are some really established. , strong leaders from academic medical centers there.

And one of the things that what became out as a result of our conversation was rural health care. And, , some of the smaller systems are way ahead of us in regard to really understanding how to be cost-effective with it. And because they've had to be from forever, right? They couldn't take risks on projects. They couldn't fail on projects. Maybe they, they had to be a little bit more conservative.

Than most, but at the end of the day, they had to make sure that their projects delivered, that they delivered on the economic value that they delivered on the promise of outcomes and experience. So it's just interesting. They have a different perspective. , we have previously dealt with the challenges of COVID-19 pandemic and we learned to navigate through it.

We have identified important projects that need to be completed despite financial setbacks. And I think that's an important sentence. It's what projects are critical to continue. In the face of financial setbacks, that's an important distinction. These projects should prioritize patient care and improve the efficiency of the organization.

By investing in and implementing the right technology. We help our organizations reduce costs. We can use for product process automation. As an example, our it department has begun exploring the integration of RPA technology to streamline workflow processes and ultimately reduce costs. And I think it's those kinds of things. I did a poll this morning on LinkedIn, if you haven't are actually yesterday morning, now that I think about it, cause I'm.

Talking a talk to you about a poll I did, , on Monday morning and my poll was which technology category will actually deliver the greatest efficiency and cost savings for health systems in the near term. And the reason I did this is because health systems are still. , facing financial pressure. It's not that we're not starting to see them come out of it, but there's still financial pressure. And my question was.

Which types of projects are, have the most promise and are delivering the most. And we have. And I put four categories because as you know, in LinkedIn, you only have four options, RPA. Robotic process automation, which he just mentioned generative AI, which is all the buzz. But it's a lot of futures. I mean, it's, it's, there's really interesting things going on, but again, there's a lot of futures. I'd be doing a lot of things to lay the foundation for how generative AI could do things in our health system. But today it's futures.

, computer vision and AI again, futures, but you're laying the foundation today. You're putting cameras in strategic locations in every patient room. If I were standing up a new hospital, there would be a camera in every room. If I'm, , if I'm retrofitting an existing hospital, if I'm doing any kind of capital projects.

On our existing, , infrastructure. I'm looking at putting cameras in around the entire, , campus, if you will. And the reality is I'm not looking for cameras that I'm gonna have to replace every couple of years. Or if I am looking at cameras, I'm gonna have to replace every couple of years I'm looking at cost-effective cameras that I can utilize.

, and then, , telemedicine. So RPA generative, AI, computer vision, AI and telemedicine. Are the four options and it's still open. So if you want a chance to vote. Please go ahead. Over and vote. So Eric Jimenez talks about RPA there. , And I think that is one of those projects to take a look at Jim phene.

Chief digital and information officer officer at, , south coast health says this there's a multi-pronged approach that we're taking one practice. We've never taken our eye off the ball with is how we can make things more efficient in our technology stack. There we're getting, we're getting pragmatic. So we're looking at it from an it through the technology stack and saying, are there ways we can do this more effectively today?

And you think back, I'll give you historically, historically we used to have a server for every, you know, every application. That we were running from our data center and then virtualization came through and it really changed the way we do things. And it changed the number of servers that an individual could manage a change, the, , allocation of disk storage and compute and all that stuff. And so it changed things. And so.

We should be looking at that technology stack. I think this is quite frankly, I think this is an annual exercise. That technology stack is loaded with opportunities. Now you're not going to be able to spend millions of dollars every year to replace your technology stack, but always be looking for those opportunities.

And I think RPA is one of those here. I think generative AI and how we use generative. AI is an opportunity here. , And I'm sure there's other aspects of the technology stack. I think we're moving things to the edge, something to consider. I think automation just in general, something to consider, , Lee, Carmen, CIO, university of Iowa healthcare, healthcare, it leaders.

I've had to balance operational expense management with innovation investments. And so everybody starts with this kind of, , this kind of a general, , , concept. And to be honest with you, I don't know how Becker's goes about this. I think I actually, I do, they send out emails to the CIO saying, Hey, here's the question?

Do you want to respond to it? And so a lot of times I have to give context and they'll bring the context in. For this, , Lee Carmen talks a lot about prioritization. So we've got to prioritize the projects that are going to deliver. Linda Stevenson CIO Fisher-Titus medical center. In Ohio as all organizations are, we are carefully watching our costs and evaluating again. That's the.

, the context statement. And a continuous explore ways we can take advantage of new technologies to attract patients. And make it convenient for them to receive care here in their community. We are also investigating any kinds of AI and automation that will improve productivity for caregivers. And administrative areas. And I think those are two very key areas.

, artificial intelligence and automation. And I've. I just had an interview last week with Taylor Davis and we were talking about this very thing. That there's a potential to decrease the amount of head count required to do some tasks by 2030, even 40% on the administrative side, especially revenue cycle, just something to.

, consider the CIO and chief digital officer for luminous health, who has been on the show, also been a part of our 2 29 projects, events, , round tables. The, the economic climate is leaning towards uncertainty. Again, these are, these are the context. Statements for healthcare at large as COVID era emergency measures are rolled back across the states and that's an, and.

And we've talked about this, a bunch on the show. The emergency measures coming back, Medicaid redetermination. There's a lot of economic factors still hitting the health systems. I believe we're coming out of it, but I believe we're still getting hit. And I do departments at provider organizations are not immune from these concerns. Absolutely. If anything, there's added pressure for CIS to not just reduce expenses, but also play a part in improving the financial health of the organization. And I think that's an important distinction. It's not only are we looking at cost reductions.

And efficiency gains, but we're also looking at the aspects of growing revenue and improving the productivity of our, , of our providers and potentially new markets and those kinds of things. , and so we're, when you're talking about the financial health of the organization, it's a bigger picture. We're looking at bigger things.

And he also makes a good point in the next paragraph while this is generally a good thing. CEO's are having a seat at the table and being healthcare leaders first. This is also causing a bit of Harper and since nearly all avenues of automation, augmentation. And general improvement in the operational rum required technology.

Absolutely. So, this is where we have to prioritize which projects continue. He goes on technology that has a cost and then budgetary expense where dollars are already tight. 90 team bandwidth. Is already tight as well, where lean departments are already stretched too thin. And so he makes great points there in terms of, , the case that you have to make is.

As an it leader, this is not a time to shrink from all it investments in all technology investments. There is a path where technology does help. To, , even with expense to help you get out of the current quagmire Scott, Arnold, CIO, and chief innovation officer at Tampa general hospital up the road from me, our health system remains on high alert with regard to the economy while we were carefully managing expenses, we're still advancing the strategic imperatives growth and innovation for the system.

Our investments in technology are foundational to these priorities and remain part of our plan to outlay. We are careful to invest what is needed just in time and focus. On projects that are either a creative. Or have benefits that neutralize the cost of investment. And this gets back to a conversation we had earlier with a bunch of CEOs.

Where we are looking for ROI. That is. Near term. If not immediate. , we were talking about 12 months or less, and that's almost immediate in the healthcare space. When you can get a return on the pro on the dollars you're spending this month, within the next 12 months, you're looking at a project that is almost cost neutral and something that you almost have to do depending on.

You know what areas of focus you have as a health system and what you're trying to drive. That's almost a project that, that just sells itself. Right. , zero to 12 months is, is almost a automatic Greenlight, 12 to 18 months. Let's let's say is, you know, a conversation or a discussion. , anything over 18 months, 18 months to, , three gears is something that is probably normally.

You would consider just moving forward with makes perfect sense and that kind of stuff in a normal economic time, but in this economic time, Those become all right. Let's, let's look at this. Let's step into this a little bit more slowly and less. It is a transformative technology that is going to change everything.

And if there's a transformative technology, you have to get in front of it. That's the category i think generative ai is in And i see a lot of organizations jumping in with the inbox and the notes and i think there's a whole host of other areas And i'm not sure i would i would slow play that one i'm not sure i would S i would play it And say you know we're going to wait 18 months to just to try to determine where we're going with gender to ai i would start projects as soon as i possibly could small projects human oversight to the output that generative AI is moving out there i would be looking at the different ways i could train my own models i would be looking at the security and the privacy that is going to be required around that again transformative projects fall into a different category And anyway I just thought , this article looked interesting i don't usually read the article as i go through with you usually i read it and determine what i'm going to talk about ahead of time but i thought it would be interesting to see how this just , caused some You know just free flowing thoughts as i was reading the article Hopefully you appreciate it. Let me know what your thoughts are that's all for today if you know someone that might benefit from our channel please forward them a note they can subscribe on our website this week held. Dot com or wherever you listen to podcasts this really does help us so please shoot a note to somebody and let them know you're listening to the show We want to thank our channel sponsors who are investing in our mission to develop the next generation of health leaders short test and 📍 artists i check them out at this week Health. health.com/today. Thanks for listening That's all for now

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