5 steps to create a technological innovation plan in health
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Whether an organization wants to improve patient care or become more efficient, few CIOs in the healthcare industry are receiving …
funding to implement or develop new technological initiatives. But despite this lack of capital, healthcare IT managers are under constant pressure to deliver healthcare technology innovation programs to meet the many challenges hospitals face today.
Much of the innovation adopted by healthcare organizations comes from out-of-the-box software or hardware that can uniquely address one or more challenges. Examples include hospitals using collaborative platforms to support healthcare team collaboration, using analytics tools alongside electronic health record data to gain new information about patients and usage. portable devices to monitor patients’ vital signs once they leave the hospital.
To ensure the success of a health technology innovation initiative, CIOs can take several steps that range from research to evaluation and continue to be the benchmark for most innovation projects.
1. Start with idea generation
Innovation in health technology begins with the creation of an idea that helps solve an existing or impending problem, such as readmissions. During this phase, healthcare IT staff should consider new approaches to problem solving. Occasionally, consultants are included due to their experience working with other hospitals. The result of this phase is usually a list of potential solutions that will require further research in the next phase.
2. Conduct more research
Before investing in or developing a new technology, it is essential that healthcare organizations research the proposed application that they plan to implement. Research may include interviews with suppliers, internal roundtables, and product demonstrations. It should also include a consideration of the financial feasibility, benefits, and value proposition that the tool will bring.
3. Prototype, develop and test
Once the initial research is complete and the team agrees to move forward, the next phase is development, which can take the form of a prototype if it is a custom application or the deployment of an existing technology from a supplier in a test environment. IT, for example, could test consumer wearable devices for patient use that can send data to a hospital to monitor a patient’s heart condition after discharge. Or developers, for example, might decide to build and deploy Internet of Things capabilities that can detect the actions of patients in their rooms and alert nurses to potential high-risk patients.
4. Implement the tool with a wider audience
Once the prototyping phase is successfully completed, the innovation team can focus on implementing their application and disseminating it to a wider audience, possibly deploying it across an institution or across the board. of a health network. During this phase, IT invests additional resources to closely monitor the new tool and ensure that end users receive adequate support.
5. Once the tool is deployed, assess
During the assessment phase, IT will need to pay close attention to feedback received from end users and continue to monitor tool performance and impact on the group. There may be additional changes, and IT may decide to adjust the application or its deployment.
Healthcare CIOs are always on the lookout for innovative ways to bring new value through technology to their employees and patients. Innovation in health technologies does not always require a new invention or the investment of large capital in large technology infrastructure projects. Innovation can come from small initiatives resulting from ingenuity and creative thinking.
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