Converging IT & Operations: With COVID-19 the future has arrived

Jon Manis
Robert Eardley
Joel L. Vengco
Joel Vengco
Anthony Hilliard MD
Mark Zirkelbach
Mark Zirkelbach
Nicholas Desai DPM

Ken Perez
Ken Perez

COVID-19 has catalyzed healthcare’s transformation, including accelerating the convergence of IT into operations. Find out what that looks like in our latest SI Industry Inside Edge “Converging IT & Operations: With COVID-19 the future has arrived,” featuring commentary by Jon Manis, SVP & CIO, CHRISTUS; Robert Eardley, CIO, University Hospitals, Cleveland; Joel Vengco, SVP & CIO, Baystate Health; Anthony Hilliard, MD, COO ambulatory, and Mark Zirkelbach, CIO, Loma Linda University Health; Nick Desai, DPM, CMIO, Houston Methodist; and Ken Perez, VP, healthcare policy, Omnicell.


INTRODUCTION | It seems so last century when we called it “shadow IT”— the proliferation of IT throughout the enterprise and beyond traditional control of the CIO, whose role has been “evolving” ever since. But that was before the COVID-19 crisis changed the world forever, including making digital health, mobility and virtual health an “essential” element of the healthcare landscape from this moment on. The convergence of IT and operations just entered hyperspace.

As CHRISTUS Health SVP & CIO John Manis puts it: “I don’t feel good about saying it, but very few things could rival COVID-19 for catalyzing and accelerating the long anticipated ‘transformation of healthcare.’ There will be no ‘back to normal’ once this crisis is over. For far too long our industry has been stuck in a stagnant paradigm. We talked about real change, but we didn’t really change. Then, suddenly, everything changed.

“Courtesy of COVID-19, the genie is out of the bottle. In response to this unprecedented virological threat, our industry and its regulators are aggressively adopting a contemporary service mindset and the modern tools and technologies that come with it—remote workforce; social networking; progressive, real-time communication, coordination and collaboration tools; telehealth and telemedicine; remote clinical observation and disease management; medical intervention by exception; self-service diagnostics and self-care; payment and reimbursement concessions; predictive analytics and knowledge management; artificial intelligence and informational chatbots; top-of-licensure clinical practice; ubiquitous access; cross-industry collaborations; innovative care models—the list goes on and on.

“Most importantly, we are now witnessing global, national, regional and local data- and information-sharing and the sharing of best practices as we all work to make a dramatic shift from the diagnosis and treatment of disease to the prediction and prevention of disease. Incredible. And all of this in just a few short weeks.”