A strategic plan is crucial to the success of an organization's IT, but today's healthcare landscape is calling for a more patient-centered approach to planning for information technology. In fact, Sue Sutton, president and CEO of Tower Strategies, believes the future of IT planning should focus on an inclusive approach -- all while optimizing workflows, playing up social media, and keeping staff needs in mind.
Sutton breaks down five tips for creating a strategic plan for IT.
1. Think about the patient experience.
What's interesting right now, said Sutton, is how patient experience is one of the "major" challenges in most healthcare organizations. "And many organizations haven't thought through how information technology can support and improve the patient experience," she said. When considering the cultural change the organization is bound to experience when taking on new IT, Sutton said it's crucial to consider what can be done electronically to support patients, whether they're in the facility or not. "This is through kiosks, tablet devices, and more," she said. Another tip she suggested was employing patient focus groups to gauge what patients want to see most when it comes to hospital IT. "I'm not sure that IT [departments have] really thought about [the fact] that one of their customers is really the patients," she said. "They've been thinking their customers are the staff. There are so many tools that are patient-facing or potentially patient-facing that they haven't leveraged."