FHIT: What is the biggest barrier to true adoption of IT in healthcare today?
Scrimshire: I could say consumer apathy. Regulations have a part to play in stifling innovation, but that is changing. As people become more aware of the costs of healthcare, I think we will see more engagement. That in turn will drive change.
The reluctance of the medical community to accept patient-generated data as part of a patient's health record has to change, especially for long-term chronic conditions. We need to make use of mobile and personal sensor technologies to drive down the cost and drive up the positive outcomes in managing chronic conditions.
FHIT: You have a vast array of experience in both the healthcare and the IT industries. What best prepared you for what you're doing today?
Scrimshire: I have many years' experience in information technology as both an executive and strategic consultant, but during part of that time, I spent two years writing a daily blog for AOL's employees about the implications of new web and social technologies on their business. This was at a time when AOL was dismantling their "Walled Garden" and dial-up operations.
This gave me an incredible opportunity to look at emerging technologies and see how they could impact businesses. It also gave me a chance to look at the business models and network mechanics behind social platforms that were emerging. This experience, coupled with working at [CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, allowed me] to see the opportunities to rethink how healthcare was delivered. As health reform took shape, I also could see how economic factors were going to drive the consumerization of health. All these different strands...put me in a unique position to lead HealthCamp.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
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