Healthcare Technology Leaders Identify Staffing Resources as Top Barrier to IT, According to New HIMSS Report

Leadership Survey Also Indicates ICD-10, Meaningful Use as Key Areas of Focus for IT

LAS VEGAS--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- For the first time in years, information technology (IT) leaders at healthcare organizations did not identify a lack of financial support for IT as an obstacle to implementation; instead, concerns about staffing resources was cited as the key barrier to IT. According to the 23rd Annual HIMSS Leadership Survey, released today, one-quarter of respondents said adequate staffing resources within their organizations is the top barrier to IT implementation and approximately two-thirds of respondents said their IT staff will increase in the next year. Leading areas in which survey respondents require staff are in the areas of clinical decision support, network and architecture support and clinical informatics professionals.

The Annual HIMSS Leadership Survey reports the opinions of more than 300 technology professionals from healthcare providers across the U.S. regarding the use of IT in their organizations. The study was released by HIMSS, the cause-based non-profit organization devoted to transforming healthcare through the best use of IT, and in-line with a leadership event taking place at HIMSS12, the organization’s Annual Conference and leading healthcare IT industry event.

As healthcare organizations move toward meeting their information technology priorities, key areas of focus as reported by the survey’s technology leaders are: achieving meaningful use and ICD-10; participating in health information exchanges (HIEs); addressing security concerns; and IT governance. Highlights of the survey results include:

Nearly 90 percent of respondents expect to complete their ICD-10 conversion by the October 1, 2013 deadline. Two-thirds of respondents also reported that implementing ICD-10 was the top area of focus for financial IT systems at their organization.

More than one-quarter of respondents have already attested to meaningful use. One-quarter of respondents also said that achieving meaningful use is the key business objective at their organization.

Almost half of respondents reported that their organization participates in a HIE. However, 22 percent of respondents said there is an HIE in their area in which they are not participating at this time.

Security continues to be a top concern for healthcare IT professionals. Approximately one-quarter of respondents indicated their organization has experienced a security breach in the past year.

IT is being successfully integrated into healthcare providers’ overarching business strategy. Half of respondents reported that the IT plan is part of the overall organizational strategic plan.

The majority of respondents believe IT can improve patient care. Three-quarters indicated that IT can impact patient care by improving clinical/quality outcomes, reducing medical errors or helping to standardize care by allowing for the use of evidence-based medicine.

“In recent years, the federal government has spearheaded several initiatives that require hospitals and healthcare organizations to invest in IT in order to improve the quality of care for patients, and create cost efficiencies. As a result, healthcare is feeling the impact of these initiatives, as nearly three quarters of the healthcare IT professionals surveyed said these were the business issues that would drive healthcare forward,” said Jennifer Horowitz, director of research, HIMSS Analytics. “It was interesting to see that staffing resources was cited by the majority of professionals as a key barrier to achieving IT implementation; given the issue has traditionally been a financial resources one. We expect that as organizations continue to invest in IT and hire to fill these positions, IT will become even more ingrained within the healthcare setting.”

If you’re interested in purchasing the full report please visit www.himssanalytics.org.

About HIMSS Analytics

HIMSS Analytics is a wholly owned not-for-profit subsidiary of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society. The company collects and analyzes healthcare data related to IT processes and environments, products, IS department composition and costs, IS department management metrics, healthcare trends and purchase-related decisions. HIMSS Analytics delivers high quality data and analytical expertise to healthcare delivery organizations, healthcare IT companies, state governments, financial companies, pharmaceutical companies, and consulting firms. Visit www.himssanalytics.org for more information.

About HIMSS

HIMSS is a cause-based, not-for-profit organization exclusively focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of information technology (IT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare. Founded 51 years ago, HIMSS and its related organizations are headquartered in Chicago with additional offices in the United States, Europe and Asia. HIMSS represents more than 44,000 individual members, of which more than two thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations. HIMSS also includes over 570 corporate members and more than 170 not-for-profit organizations that share our mission of transforming healthcare through the effective use of information technology and management systems. HIMSS frames and leads healthcare practices and public policy through its content expertise, professional development, research initiatives, and media vehicles designed to promote information and management systems’ contributions to improving the quality, safety, access, and cost-effectiveness of patient care. To learn more about HIMSS and to find out how to join us and our members in advancing our cause, please visit our website at www.himss.org.



CONTACT:

Joyce Lofstrom/HIMSS
312-915-9237
312-804-6439 (cell)
[email protected]
Amanda Guisbond/HIMSS
617-779-1813
[email protected]

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