The Sky is the Limit!
Wednesday, October 31 | 5:00pm – 5:20pm
Through in-depth interviews of 17 top female CIOs from organizations such as Johns Hopkins, Memorial Sloan-Kettering and Dignity Health, we have uncovered the surprising ‘behind the scenes’ story of what it’s really like to be a female healthcare IT executive. We dive deeper into the common knowledge of women in the American workplace—is there a wage gap or glass ceiling for healthcare IT executives? Our story, compiled from candid conversations with women CIOs, cuts through the media hype of the gender gap and paints an unexpected vision for women in healthcare IT. We explore what makes healthcare culture uniquely positioned to allow women leaders to thrive—the future of healthcare may well be driven by women as the majority of currently enrolled medical students are women.
Through our conversations, we uncovered several commonalities in their career paths that have shaped their success—saying yes, expecting equality, cultivating business acumen and executive presence, and diverse networking engagement. Determining organizational fit is also key—we will provide a specific technique for reverse interviewing an opportunity to screen for executive compatibility. These key messages can be immediately applied by all executive audience members, men and women alike.
We will also look to the future—female CIOs are uniquely positioned as executive leaders to drive the future of healthcare IT as patient engagement and experience evolve in the post-interoperability era. There are no barriers to achievement for women in healthcare IT and there are many exciting opportunities for continued growth. The audience will take away a sense of optimism for the collaborative work of women and men in healthcare IT as well as specific strategies for navigating their own executive career paths.
From Speed and Humility come Mission Achievement
Wednesday, October 31 | 5:20pm – 5:40pm
Fifteen years ago, a flash alert went out to the U.S. Navy to scramble ships and aircraft to the Red Sea to prepare for Tomahawk missile strikes on Iraq. The speaker, a young naval officer at the time, got his ship underway from Italy at night and headed at full speed across the Mediterranean Sea towards the Suez Canal. In the chaos of the noisy ship’s pilot house, with radars operators, lookouts, senior officers, navigators and helmsmen all shouting to be heard above the engines at Flank III and the pounding of the waves, the speaker found that the ship was actually safer and less likely to have an accident at sea than had it been sailing slowly in broad daylight. From speed and focus come progress and safety was a lesson he learned that night and applied broadly to business and to healthcare innovation ever since.
This presentation follows a career leading up to that one event and in the years afterward framing each leadership opportunity as a choice to use humility, openness, respect, speed, and awareness not for individual strength, but as ways to see, hear, learn and achieve through the engagement of peers and teams.
Combating the Opioid Crisis
Wednesday, October 31 | 5:40pm – 6:00pm
Opioid addiction and related deaths have skyrocketed in the United States. The death rate from opioid overdoses was five times higher in 2016 than in 1999. Geisinger has employed a multi-faceted approach to curb the use of opioids, such as utilizing information technology and electronic prescribing (e-prescribing), implementing best practices for pain management, embedding pharmacists in our primary care clinics, establishing drug take-back programs, and others. Collectively, these initiatives have significantly reduced the use of opioids by our patients and members, and increased quality care outcomes while reducing costs.
With our history as an innovator in the use of electronic health records and care delivery models, we saw an opportunity to reverse these trends. Our physician leadership proposed that by limiting or eliminating the prescribing of opioids in the clinical setting, Geisinger could minimize or prevent a patient’s exposure to the drugs and the consequent risk of developing an addiction that could lead to overdose and death. Reducing opioid addictions could also ease the burden on health care providers. An analysis of 942 Geisinger patients who overdosed on opioids found a steep increase in the use of acute care – especially expensive emergency department services – prior to an overdose.
We developed and initiated several approaches that focus on changing physician practice patterns to reduce the prescribing of opioids – including creating a provider dashboard linked to our electronic health record to identify current practice patterns among our providers. We found that our providers varied greatly in their approaches to prescribing opioids, with a relatively small number being heavy prescribers. We then used this information to first target the outliers and provide them with best practices for pain management.
The pain management program for surgical patients where we counsel patients and their families to expect some manageable pain after relatively minor procedures – and the use of non-addictive alternatives for managing pain. In cases where our physicians believe an opioid prescription is in the best interest of the patient, our physicians are encouraged to use the smallest effective dosage prescribed for seven days or less.