This National Health IT Week, help us demonstrate the value of HIT

Your voice helps accelerate the vision of better health through the best use of information and technology.
By Carla Smith
12:56 PM
National Health IT Week

Every day, HIMSS strives to achieve our cause of better health through the best use of information and technology.

During the first week of October, we will embark on a special one-week celebration, National Health IT Week. Our vision’s champions have embedded digital health intelligence and technologies in their daily work, thus enabling the right information to be available to the right people at the right time to make the right care decisions.

[Also: National Health IT Week: Your guide to highlights on the #NHITWeek agenda]

Just this week, I heard from Dr. Michael Zaroukian – CMIO at Sparrow Health Systems in Michigan – about a series of critical, life-threatening issues facing a patient. Dr. Zaroukian said that thanks to the best use of IT at Sparrow Health, the clinical team was able to make a timely and correct diagnosis, initiate care, prevent worsening, and improve the patient's health.

It is experiences like this that bring together many people to share their stories during NHIT Week – from Capitol Hill to our partners, to our members, to you.

Public Policy Plays a Key Role

HIMSS approaches public policy with highly-credible practicality and non-partisanship: we focus on change that is both meaningful and possible. Our voices are important to elected and appointed officials because our realistic approach focuses on what really matters – cost-effective, evidence-based care where and when people need it. Our dedicated volunteers – providers working in urban, rural, suburban, and underserved communities across the United States – formulate our congressional ‘asks’, and lead the conversations we have with policy-makers.

Our conversations during NHIT Week and beyond will focus on the following:

  • Supporting Healthcare Transformation: The many ways in which digital health is driving transformation in care delivery including improvements in quality and safety; widespread, secure interoperable health information; patient-consumer engagement; return on investment of IT implementations; and, advances in innovation.
  • Expanding Access to High-Quality Care: Use of well-proven technologies – including telehealth and remote patient monitoring – to increase patients’ access to the care they need, coordinating care as patients engage with clinicians in different settings, and improving patient outcomes. 
  • Increasing Economic Opportunity: Our nation needs a robust, diverse, and competent IT workforce to meet the health sector’s needs. Health IT plays an important role in supporting economic growth and ensuring clinicians have the IT fluency they need to work at their highest levels. 
  • Making Communities Healthier: The fundamental role digital health plays in keeping families and communities healthy, as well as equipping public health professionals with the knowledge they need to prevent, detect, and effectively respond to health-related threats.

Our Partners’ Voices

Every day, we welcome all who share in our cause of better health through the best use of information and technology. Living this core value, we listen, we respect and we collaborate. With our NHIT Week partners, we offer our combined expertise to share real-world knowledge with our nation’s policy-makers. We encourage you read their stories.

[Also: #NHITweek: Your social media guide for National Health IT Week]

Your Voice

Would you like to join us? We’ll be hosting meetings with policy-makers in Washington DC and across the United States throughout the week of October 2, and would love to welcome you. All our local and national events are included in our calendar of events. Please let us know if you can join us.

And, if you’d like to share your story, let us know:

  • How has health IT influenced your life?
  • How has health IT made care better, smarter?

Your voice and your experience drives our vision of better health through the best use of information and technology. Take some time to share your voice with the community by participating with the #IHeartHIT story campaign. And, please read the compelling stories people have shared thus far.

HIMSS is a convener of this ongoing dialogue that speaks to achieving better health through the best use of information and technology. Every day, we hear and react to these conversations, but during NHIT Week, join me and the many voices in this developing dialogue to create a unified crescendo that demonstrates the value of health IT.

Follow me on Twitter: @CarlaMSmith