Union Hospital IT team serious about service

'We have a great team, and we’re committed to getting these things done.'
By Bernie Monegain
02:55 AM
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Union Hospital

The first thing Union Hospital of Cecil County CIO Anne Lara wants to talk about is how fabulous her team is.

Why does she think this group of 26 is the best?

"They love the hospital," she says. "They're committed to doing a great job all the time. They deliver exceptional customer service. They're just dedicated to what they do."

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The first thing Union Hospital of Cecil County CIO Anne Lara wants to talk about is how fabulous her team is.

Why does she think this group of 26 is the best?

"They love the hospital," she says. "They're committed to doing a great job all the time. They deliver exceptional customer service. They're just dedicated to what they do."

Lara joined Union Hospital three years ago, after a 27-year nursing career. The provider experience serves her well in the technology realm, helps her to better understand and empathize with what providers need and why.

There is no shortage of health IT work to accomplish at Union Hospital. Two big projects are winding down, and she expects they will be completed by year's end.

One involves installing a wireless system, wireless access points in the hospitals, all physician offices and outpatient areas at five separate campuses. The other is putting the final touches on the hospital's high availability, high reliability data business continuity plan."We're tweaking the technology that we have in our data center," says Lara.

Also, on the application side, the IT team makes sure information is available to providers who take care of patients. They are working on projects like CCD exchanges and interoperability with two HIEs, in Delaware and Maryland.

Then there's meaningful use and ICD-10 (Union attested for Stage 2 in 2015 and plans to look for another 90-day period for attestation in 2016). There are everyday end-user needs like re-booting servers and passwords that need to be redone.

It's a lot.

But Lara is undaunted.

"That's the beauty of the team," she says. "We have a great team, and we're committed to getting these things done."

In terms of doing better, she says, it's critical to keep health IT top of mind with everyone at the hospital, the better to ensure the IT team is involved at the beginning of projects – and not only when something is broken.

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