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Episode 154: Hybrid Horizons: Balancing Security and Employee Satisfaction in the Workplace. Denis O'Shea, Mobile Mentor

March 6, 2023

"Why WEDI" is a series of short interviews with WEDI members and leaders in health IT. This week we interviewed Denny Brennan from MHDC. Denny is also on the WEDI Board of Directors.
What do you think the biggest challenge in healthcare is right now?

Today, the greatest challenge in healthcare is the disruptive shift from volume to value. Volume in fee-for-service care has created large and cumbersome bureaucracies that compete for revenue rather than social good. These bureaucracies burden the customer with the costs of excessive administration, lack of access and tranparency due to competition for data and services that should be shared, and poor customer service. At its best, healthcare is an assemblage of social enterprises that should be doing well by doing good. The value proposition in a social enterprise - such as a hospital, medical group, or health plan - is measured in positive contributions to society, e.g., reduced costs, improved access and equity, better outcomes. This shift from volume to value will require an industry that focuses less on consolidation and more on distribution of services to meet the needs of the individual health consumer. Regulations, technology, and culture are effecting these changes now.


What advice would you give someone just starting their health IT career?


Look to where health IT is headed not where it is today. How is health IT likely to change over the next five years? What career opportunities are emerging? What roles are likely to decline in importance?

Health information exchange, between and among payers, providers, and consumers will require HIT expertise in interoperability, web-based exchange through application programming interfaces, and applications that will give consumers more information about their health, their providers, and their health costs than has ever been the case.

I would recommend looking for health IT opportunties that address interoperability. Whether one chooses to look at a health system, a health insurance plan, or a technology company, expertise in connecting systems between organizations and consumers, standardizing health data and exchange, and building apps that help consumers will be high-value careers for some time. Application, network, and systems administration are enterprise activities are increasingly outsourced, with limited career advancement opportunities.


What is your favorite thing about WEDI?

WEDI provides a comprehensive view of the health IT market across policy, technology, and cultural dimensions. WEDI also provides a tremendous opportunity to contribute to discussions and learn from national thought-leaders. As a complement to one's career development strategy, WEDI provides a dynamic, real-world immersion in where health IT is headed, who's leading that change, and what current and future policies will impact healthcare for years to come.

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