Inside CHIME: CIO Forum Puts Spotlight on Transformation
|3.3.16 by Matthew Weinstock
Director of Communications and Public Relations, CHIME
Speakers at the CHIME-HIMSS CIO Forum emphasized the need for health IT executives to become strategic leaders within their organizations.
Carey Lohrenz knows a thing or two about being a transformative leader.
When she joined the Navy in the early 1990s, Lohrenz was determined to earn her wings — like her father, who served as a Marine Corps pilot, and her brother, a Navy pilot. Although federal law banned women from flying combat vehicles, Lohrenz still set her eyes to the sky. She achieved stellar marks in her training academy and progressed to the highest levels permissible by DoD policy. She put herself in position to be ready if the glass ceiling shattered, which it did in 1993 when Congress finally lifted the ban on women in combat. Lohrenz entered the history books and became the Navy’s first female F-14 Tomcat fighter pilot.
As a Tomcat pilot, Lohrenz put her body and mind through harrowing paces. Taking off from an aircraft carrier, F-14s go from zero to 180 miles per hour in under two seconds. Blood rushes from your brain and settles in the lower half of your body. The pressure is so fierce that it feels like your toenails are going to be ripped off. And then there’s the landing; trying to put a $45-million aircraft down on a ship that is being tossed by high seas.
So, when Lohrenz talks about responding to pressure and charting a path to success, she commands attention.
“If you lose sight, you lose the fight,” she said during her closing keynote at the CHIME-HIMSS CIO Forum in Las Vegas, urging the 700-plus health IT leaders in attendance to stay focused on what’s important and not to get derailed by ancillary issues. “As the world is changing, your main purpose as a leader is to understand what success looks like.”
That was the overarching message during the daylong event. The other speakers — Thomas Goetz, Jack Uldrich and Gary Loveman (we previewed Loveman’s remarks in this Inside CHIME column) — all detailed how IT is rapidly changing the healthcare landscape and emphasized that CIOs and other health IT leaders must be the drivers. In fact, that’s how CHIME Board Chair Marc Probst kicked off the day, saying that CIOs must take a more active and strategic role in their organizations.
Probst highlighted a couple of initiatives that have thrust CHIME onto the national scene and show how CIOs can be more transformative leaders. CHIME is leading the charge to find a solution for ensuring accurate patient identification. And, CHIME is embarking on a partnership with OpenNotes to improve patient access to their medical records. Both of these initiatives, Probst said, are representative of CHIME’s vision statement — Exceptional Leaders Transforming Healthcare.
More Inside CHIME Volume 1, No. 12:
- Transforming Healthcare Through Information Exchange – Russ Branzell