At Roper St. Francis, they're managing a full plate

'A very committed group of individuals who work extremely hard'
By John Andrews
03:09 AM
Roper St. Francis

There's an old adage that states, "If you want something done, give it to a busy person." If that's the case, then send all requests to Melinda Cardell in care of Roper St. Francis Healthcare in Charleston, S.C.

The interim vice president and chief information officer has been leading the IT team for the past 18 months – perhaps the busiest time in the organization's history. What have they been doing? How about ICD-10 readiness, an electronic medical record initiative, human resources information system implementation and creating a clinically integrated network for population health?

It's a workload that would be challenging for any healthcare executive, yet Cardell keeps a pragmatic attitude, focusing on accomplishing each task.

"Our principal role is to provide technology solutions which can be incorporated into the operational processes to assist clinical providers in offering the best care to our patients," she said.

"In conjunction with the clinical leaders, the IT department leaders are examining the technology involved in our care venues and the means used to provide care. Based on these examinations, we are laying the foundation for the changing care environments for the organization," Cardell added.

Operating in a constructive manner that benefits the health system requires several skill sets – logistics management, effective communications, creating a spirit of teamwork and following established work plans, she said.

Though Cardell assumes responsibility for the department's performance, she humbly concedes that she's "only as good as the team."

Roper St. Francis "has a very committed group of individuals who work extremely hard yet know how to have fun and keep things in perspective," she said. "Teammates communicate effectively with each other and pull together to accomplish critical goals."


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