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Feds To Help Train 50,000 Health IT Workers 212

Posted by Soulskill
from the bears-need-time-off-too dept.
Lucas123 writes "The US Department of Health and Human Services is spending about $144 million on grant programs at more than 80 colleges and universities to help fill a void of about 50,000 workers for IT jobs in the healthcare industry. The workers are needed to help hospitals, physician practices and other healthcare entities to roll out electronic medical records, which the government is promoting through the use of reimbursement funds for those who implement EMRs and penalties for those who don't. The Health IT courses are set to begin this fall in five regions around the US and are aimed exclusively at workers who have previous IT or healthcare experience."
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Feds To Help Train 50,000 Health IT Workers

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  • by FuckingNickName (1362625) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:22AM (#32936668) Journal

    How often must the government / industry claim there is a lack of qualified workers in some field before people just laugh and wonder who wants to bring down whose salary?

    How about giving them loans for training which are paid back as part of their salary once they've secured a job?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bsDaemon (87307)

      Wouldn't bringing down salaries for IT workers in the health care industry reduce health care costs? Isn't that basically what the whole debate was about with regards to health care "reform" was about for the last 2 years? They need more IT people to support moving everything to computers, but that means they can pay them less at the same time, as there's a larger supply than demand at that point. Makes sense to me, even if it sucks. But not my industry, so meh.

      • by beakerMeep (716990) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:22AM (#32936970)
        Do you have any concept of IT worker salary? This wasn't what the health care debate was about. Your average IT grunt making 50-100k was not the cause of ballooning health care costs. Really there is nothing wrong with the government putting grants towards creating industry efficiencies. EMRs are sorely needed and some seed money to start training programs is not a half bad way to help nudge the industry (and doctors) towards EMRs.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Grunts don't make 50-100k. Hell, I've known managers who don't make that. The only people I've personally known were either important to the company or taking on bigger responsibilities than you are aware of.

          The people who handle your servers/routers or run cables are not grunts, the reason they make 50-100k is because maintaining your system services requires major skill and dedication while cabling is tiresome and dangerous work akin to electrical wiring. These are big jobs and if you're offering $35k a
        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          Why are electronic medical records so sorely needed? So that hackers can access my medical records?
        • by CAIMLAS (41445)

          We've got plenty of EMRs, thanks.

          What we need is a decent EMR that isn't horribly expensive that small organizations can use. Unfortunately, unlike other industries where the scale of information in a monolythic application largely relates to the organization's size, this isn't true in healthcare: the 5-doctor clinic needs the same access to EMR as the 1,000 doctor hospital network.

      • by CAIMLAS (41445)

        Yes, and it's a fucking stupid idea. Healthcare IT sallaries are already low compared to other industries. Unlike most for-profit business, hospitals and healthcare in general have yet to learn that IT assets, like any other physical asset, depreciates over time. They replace it when it breaks (or provide you with the funding to do so when it breaks), and the pay for an individual healthcare IT worker is similarly treated. Granted, there are more healthcare IT workers per capita than in most other industrie

    • Windows != IT (Score:3, Insightful)

      Making it a general programme for people with health care experience will work. Getting even into an entry level medical job entails around 6 years of school plus at least a year or two of work experience. There are exceptions for some specialties, like phlebotomy, where the training period is shorter. Even then it still is not knowledge that can be faked or made up for in a few months of side reading. However, legitimate IT backgrounds, if present in a small ratio, can provide skills and insight not av

      • Re:Windows != IT (Score:4, Informative)

        by markdavis (642305) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:24AM (#32936980)

        Unfortunately, healthcare in the USA (and many other countries) is *extremely* entrenched in Microsoft products (trust me, I know) and closed source software. The whole "giving out money for EMR's" has been a disaster. Special interest groups have pretty much ensured that all the money will go only to "approved" or "certified" systems, which are all closed-source, commercial packages (and almost all also running on MS-Windows).

        And guess what those companies did? They RAISED THEIR PRICES for that software by the same amount of money that is being pumped into handouts to hospitals and physician groups!

        Instead of pumping billions of dollars into closed source, single-platform, commercial products that lock in customers, the Fed should have directed that money into open standards, open source, and multi-platform research and coding. You want to talk about savings? Imagine how much the industry could save if there was at least one robust, flexible, open-source, multi-platform EMR? (And no, that isn't OpenVistA). Let EMR companies make their money off custom (but open) additions, installation, training, support, hosting, etc.

        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by bieber (998013)
          Surely you jest! Can you imagine the mayhem that would ensue if the terrorists could see the source code to our hospitals? /s
        • You might be interested to know that the federal government (under the guidance of HHS) is funding and fostering community support for development of an open source health information exchange framework. This includes the software to run the system that health care providers (think hospitals, insurance, HMOs, etc) can install and run, and administration of the network backbone to connect them (also known as the NHIN [hhs.gov]).

          http://www.connectopensource.org/about/what-is-CONNECT [connectopensource.org]

        • The really bizzare thing is that while the oil industry has had open standards for file formats and other elements for decades the health industry has been steadily closing things off.
        • Why isn't Openvista good?

          • by markdavis (642305)

            I don't want to slam OpenVistA/EVistA/WorldVistA (or whatever people want to call it)... but from what I know about it:

            1) It is an ancient system
            2) It is developed in what is now an obscure language (MUMPS)
            3) It is barely multiplatform (especially since there is no Linux nor MacOS GUI client)
            4) The design is very rigid- for example, it can't really be used in nursing homes nor rehab facilities because it is designed around acute care

            Granted, things may have changed over the last few years in ways I am not a

      • What can kill the project dead, dead, dead is if people with Windowz Skillz are allowed to pose as IT workers. Microsoft products have little to do with IT except that they are placeholders blocking legitimate, functioning protocols, formats, applications, and operating systems. The kind of slug that tries to make a living of of Microsoft products lacks the ability to analyze and solve problems. They're usually either rote memorization monkeys or sales marketeers.

        You self-righteous bastard!

        Let me clue you i

      • What can kill the project dead, dead, dead is if people with Windowz Skillz are allowed to pose as IT workers. Microsoft products have little to do with IT except that they are placeholders blocking legitimate, functioning protocols, formats, applications, and operating systems. The kind of slug that tries to make a living of of Microsoft products lacks the ability to analyze and solve problems. They're usually either rote memorization monkeys or sales marketeers.

        How did this comment get moderated up? The

      • What can kill the project dead, dead, dead is if people with Windowz Skillz are allowed to pose as IT workers. Microsoft products have little to do with IT except that they are placeholders blocking legitimate, functioning protocols, formats, applications, and operating systems. The kind of slug that tries to make a living of of Microsoft products lacks the ability to analyze and solve problems.

        Mommy not give enough love when you were little?

        Every person I've ever met who sounds like you is also the same t

    • How often must the government / industry claim there is a lack of qualified workers in some field before people just laugh and wonder who wants to bring down whose salary?

      How about giving them loans for training which are paid back as part of their salary once they've secured a job?

      Maybe their premise is wrong. There doesn't appear to be a lack of qualified IT workers. (My boss is searching for a go-out-and-replace-this-motherboard technician, and a majority of the applicants are 'big players'--like former Oracle DB developers). I think the correct question is "Why aren't we getting a lot of IT people wanting to work in the medical industry?".

      My guess is the horribly insane regulations like HIPAA, SOX, etc... that make the job more 'risky'.

      If someone hacks into a windows box a

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        Maybe their premise is wrong. There doesn't appear to be a lack of qualified IT workers. (My boss is searching for a go-out-and-replace-this-motherboard technician, and a majority of the applicants are 'big players'--like former Oracle DB developers). I think the correct question is "Why aren't we getting a lot of IT people wanting to work in the medical industry?".

        My guess is the horribly insane regulations like HIPAA, SOX, etc... that make the job more 'risky'.

        Speaking for myself, these jobs aren't in places I want to live, or places I already live. I would take a decent-paying IT job if it didn't require me to move to Bumfuck, AK, where the women are scarce and the seals are scared.

    • by jopsen (885607)

      How about giving them loans for training which are paid back as part of their salary once they've secured a job?

      And then people can't change job... Or they'll have to pay the loan themselves... Who would want it then ?
      - I doubt six months training is cheap...

      Slightly off-topic but I never understand why you Americans are so willing to take huge loans so early in your life, just to get into college...
      I'm fairly happy with my free education and educational support (about 1000 USD / month). I've just finished fourth semester computer science, don't live at home or receive financial support from my parents and haven

  • will they result in more health care than they need?
  • by Senes (928228) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:27AM (#32936686)
    Instead of tapping into the underemployed IT labor resources, which would cost more money, businesses have instead successfully lobbied the federal government to spend its own money to solve their problems for them.

    Were at Wal-Mart 2.0, now any job can be paid by government instead of the employers themselves.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DriedClexler (814907)

      Yes and no. It looks like most of these will fund training for technical schools which are, as the /. crowd already knows, basically worthless for actually being productive in IT, and probably won't help you get a job. (The stories of people who went into debt to go to one of these schools, hoping to get an IT job but becoming just as unemployable anyway.

      What's worse, as those who get e.g. "Cisco certification" know, it can tell employers that, "This applicant knows enough to destroy your system, but not

  • i've always looked right over health care jobs because they drug test and I refuse to work for a company who does that...end of story. They wonder why they can't find anyone to work for them? hah...

    • by Lucas123 (935744)
      And, we all know how much the healthcare industry is hurting from the lack of workers who use recreational drugs.We'd all feel much safer knowing the guy in charge of the EMR database just finished smoking a doobie.
      • Re:drug testing? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Sponge Bath (413667) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:53AM (#32936814)
        The original poster argues that invasive and unjustified prying into the private lives of employees is a disincentive to potential employees. You respond that anyone who questions those policies does drugs while on the job. You either missed the point or are purposefully ignoring it.
        • yep that's pretty much the point i'm trying to make - people should be judged by how they perform their jobs, not on what they do outside of their jobs. Some of the commenter's here acting as if someone who smokes pot is an inferior person is just hilarious and goes to show how ignorant the masses can be. Sure too much of anything can be a bad thing, but losing a job cause you smoked some pot at a party 2-4 weeks ago (the amount of time it could potentially show up on a piss test) or something is just reta

          • by iamhassi (659463)
            " people should be judged by how they perform their jobs, not on what they do outside of their jobs"

            From my experiences with drug users the fact that they use drugs does say a lot about how well they perform their jobs.

            Plus, it reflects pretty poorly on the company if you ever get publicly busted for drugs. In a large city no one would notice probably, but in smaller towns every little drug bust shows up in the local newspaper.
            • maybe, but the fact they are getting busted means they probably aren't being very responsible in the first place....and anecdotal experiences hardly speak for everyone...but even so I'm not sure you're really disagreeing with me - if their job performance is shit then that should speak for itself should it not?

              as for company image, i haven't seen too many cases where people getting busted for drugs listed the company they worked for and what not, not unless the person was a high ranking official in the comp

              • as for company image, i haven't seen too many cases where people getting busted for drugs listed the company they worked for and what not, not unless the person was a high ranking official in the company that people otherwise knew anyway...

                In small towns you don't have to post the name of the company you work for. People know who you work for and if your name gets posted in the newspaper it will get talked about by a lot of people and will reflect on the company you work for if you have a job with a lot of

                • Big city anonymity does not exist in small towns.

                  In high school, I was dropping my mom off at the doctor's in the nearby city one afternoon, when I broke one of my blinker covers. (Was squeezing into a narrow space, going about 0 mph because I was worried about hitting the bumper of the SUV next to me. Damn thing was *higher* than my bumper, so instead of touching, the SUV bumper cleared mine and took out the plastic covering my blinker.) At 8:30am the next morning, a kid in my school said to me, "so I heard you got into an accident last night..."

                  I grew

                  • Big city anonymity does not exist in small towns.

                    In high school, I was dropping my mom off at the doctor's in the nearby city one afternoon, when I broke one of my blinker covers. (Was squeezing into a narrow space, going about 0 mph because I was worried about hitting the bumper of the SUV next to me. Damn thing was *higher* than my bumper, so instead of touching, the SUV bumper cleared mine and took out the plastic covering my blinker.) At 8:30am the next morning, a kid in my school said to me, "so I heard you got into an accident last night..."

                    I grew up in one of those sorts of towns. And really, nothing reflected poorly on the local companies. Because anything YOU did was tied to YOU. Not to your company. Nobody decided not to go to the store I worked at because their employee had an accident. When a local guy got into an accident and got a DUI, everyone knew the lawyer he was going to hire, because he was one of the three in town. When he got off with a misdemeanor, everyone knew he was a drunk who got into an accident. But nobody boycotted his company. They might go in an harass him, but that was about it.

                    Big city anonymity does not exist in small towns.

                    It's true. but I've never seen the sort of "punish the company for bad employees" mentality of you and a couple other people in this thread. Did I just grow up in sensible towns, or is everyone just making up shit that doesn't happen in the real world?

                    You're looking at this from an unrealistic point-of-view. You're taking a fender bender and generalizing it to a drug bust. That's not a rational generalization.

                    Just imagine if you had been the head of IT at a local hospital, a manager at a local bank, a police dispatcher, or any other kind of position of responsibility that directly affects the public, and gotten busted for illegal drugs. The response to both you and your employer would have been a lot different. People would call into the question the

            • by h4rr4r (612664)

              From your experiences with people who you knew used drugs, far more people use drugs and you just don't know it. The average worker who might enjoy recreational drugs is not going to be telling everyone that.

            • From my experiences with drug users the fact that they use drugs does say a lot about how well they perform their jobs.

              Great. Then don't do invasive drug testing, and base their employment on how well they perform their jobs. In my experience, most of the drug users I know were indistinguishable at their jobs from non-drug-users.

              I lived most of my life in small towns. I must have been in some liberal paradise, because there were lots of local people busted for drugs. And lots of people *everybody* knew were doing drugs outside of work. But by and large, nobody gave too much of a shit. Why? They based that person's respect

          • by Macrat (638047)

            yep that's pretty much the point i'm trying to make - people should be judged by how they perform their jobs, not on what they do outside of their jobs.

            You mean the guy who has trouble getting into the office before noon because he is always sleeping off his weed buzz from the evening before?

      • Re:drug testing? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by markdavis (642305) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:12AM (#32936916)

        You are an asshole. Did it ever occur to you that there are people (myself included) that have NEVER used illegal drugs and yet refuse to be drug tested because it is a violation of our privacy and almost always with no probable cause?

        1) You also have no idea what else they are testing for
        2) You have no idea what information is shared and to whom
        3) There is a absolute possibility of false positives that could ruin your reputation

        Drug testing is evil, period. Legal drugs (such as alcohol and prescription drugs, even over-the-counter meds) can be just as debilitating. Even sleep deprivation can cause severe performance problems. And those that do choose to use a illegal drug on their own time don't necessarily affect their on-the-job performance.

        If a company wants to ensure their workforce is not "impaired", then they should test for impairment through some type of coordination, response time, or mental exercise. Or perhaps even through observation of performance.

        • More and more it seems drug testing is used as a sort of blanket "cover our asses" type of thing for companies which are too lazy to actually monitor the performance of their employees. It's quite sad honestly.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by drsmack1 (698392)
      I have a friend in I.T. and he regularly smokes pot and will occasionally take other things that mess him up. This *does* make him less reliable and he is less consistently available to work when scheduled.

      Knowing him has made me more in favor of the employers right to test for drugs (as part of the employment contract).

      I'd really like there to be some sort of disincentive for him being high as a kite (or recovering) whilst he is working on medical equipment that may be keeping someone alive.
      • Re:drug testing? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:58AM (#32936850)
        How do you know the pot messes him up on a long-term basis? He could just be naturally unreliable.

        There is a major difference between being presently intoxicated (which would be grounds for firing anyway) and having had a smoke in the past couple of weeks (which a drug test could yield a positive from.)
      • Re:drug testing? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Internet_Communist (592634) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:11AM (#32936912) Homepage

        this is anecdotal at best and really speaks out more about your friend as a person than it does the effects of the drugs on him....

  • by syntap (242090) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @09:52AM (#32936810)

    I always hate to RTFA and burst the naysayer bubbles, but "the training programs are aimed at people who already have health care or IT backgrounds -- not workers from other fields who have no previous experience or training in either discipline." As such I don't think it is dilutive in terms of IT worker salaries... they are taking people would would have been in the IT workforce and steering them to healthcare.

    This isn't the old "train the janitor to develop complex systems" move from dot-com era. However the article does not seem to address the possibility of recipients of this training going overseas with the expertise.

    • by Sarten-X (1102295)
      I'm not very certain, since I only work with US healthcare, but it's my understanding that the big overseas job markets (Europe, Asia) have had EMR for a long time already. The US is the only place with a huge demand for EMR experts.
  • by WiglyWorm (1139035) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:10AM (#32936902) Homepage
    ... I say "bring it on". The IT department at the hospital I work at is bloated, inefficient, and ineffective. A lot of it has to do with our leadership and lax corporate culture, but a lot of it also has to do with the fact that 25% of our IT department is made of nurses who have not a clue about technology, and the other 75% of it is made of technology people who know nothing about medicine/hospital work. I can honestly say that some of the wacky decisions the IT department has made out of ignorance have negatively affected our patient care. I doubt it's killed anyone, but it has caused unnecessary delays and confusion.
    • 25% of our IT department is made of nurses who have not a clue about technology, and the other 75% of it is made of technology people who know nothing about medicine/hospital work.

      That's 100% total. Which group are you in?

  • by rsilvergun (571051) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:19AM (#32936960)
    It's been going on for some time. A bunch of wealth asshats bought out a ton of regionally accredited schools and turned them into diploma mills for soaking up taxpayer money in exchange for fake educations. IT is really popular with these bastards because it's cheap as hell to train and the rubes these 'schools' prey on think there's lots of easy money in computers because they find them hard to understand.

    There's a movement in the Obama admin to take away these pseudo-school's eligibility for gov't if they can't show 80% of their graduates get jobs in their field and actually enforcing it. Right now they're skirting around these regulations by claiming stuff like call center work is 'IT'.

    Anyway, if the gov't really gave a flying fsck they'd stop the H1-B Visa program dead. At any rate this is just more free money for the rich. Yea America.
  • Healthcare is a service that has evolved to benefit productive societies. It is mostly unexportable and can not sustainably drive GDP anymore than government spending can. Thus the government's push to expand the sector while the rest of the productive economy is contracting is nothing more than a malinvestment which will result in a weaker economy overall.

    • by shaitand (626655) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:57AM (#32937194) Journal

      A cut in healthcare expenses puts just as much capital in consumer pockets as a tax cut. Arguably, unlike the tax cut, it puts the capital in the consumer pockets that are likely to need it.

      Consumers then spend that money, into the productive economy but without screwing up a budget surplus.

      • Here's a chart [washingtonpost.com] showing a very strong correlation between health care costs and wages. For a period in the 90s health care costs grew very slowly and wages shot up, and when health care costs started rising more sharply during the 00s wages became stagnant. It makes sense that an employer would spend less on an employees wages as the cost of their benefits go up.
      • A cut in healthcare expenses puts just as much capital in consumer pockets as a tax cut. Arguably, unlike the tax cut, it puts the capital in the consumer pockets that are likely to need it.

        Consumers then spend that money, into the productive economy but without screwing up a budget surplus.

        That's great. Now when is somebody going to do something to reduce healthcare expenses?

    • by Sarten-X (1102295)

      Better healthcare leads to more healthy people, which leads to more productive people, which leads to a better GDP. That's one angle.

      Another is that American healthcare is a huge industry, and the processes that are effective there can be expected to migrate into other industries easily, having passed the test of scale. It's hospital EMR today, leading to the fabled paperless office down the road.

    • I'd argue that it is partly exportable, as some people come to the US for medical procedures, but your point stands that it is primarily local.

      Of particular importance, and as mentioned by some sibling posts, is that the federal government spends an inordinate amount of money on healthcare. This could have cost implications which would potentially lower (albeit a small amount) the cost per procedure in overhead and administrative expenses. Will that be reflected in the bills we pay or in the size of the hou

    • There is a huge push for telemedicine right now. Lots of money is going into developing systems where docs can perform consultations via internet.

      An objective of all of this is to further reduce healthcare costs by offshoring many routine examinations to Bangkok or other third world physicians. Your tax dollars at work.

      • by h4rr4r (612664)

        So my tax dollars are being used to make this market more efficient? Sounds great to me.

  • by shaitand (626655) on Saturday July 17, 2010 @10:55AM (#32937158) Journal

    I've been in hospitals with digitized systems. The nurses simply don't have the time to do data entry on top of their jobs.

    It's hard enough grabbing the pills and running room to room without having to stop after each one, scan the cup into the system, fix the system when it doesn't log the cup correctly or the patient opt'd not to take the drugs yet or has a script that gives a different number of pills at night vs day or spit the pills out and she needs to get more.

    Now you have nurses with several cups of pills they have to hold because the digital system already has them checked out. Patients who can't get medication because the nurse can't just go get more pills to replace the ones she knows weren't taken. People who aren't attended to at all because the nurse has to spend an extra 15 minutes per patient per room stop to handle data entry overhead.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Excelcior (1390167)

      Working in the medical field myself, I can tell you that digitizing makes things faster, not slower. Back when it was all paper, you still had to take just as many notes and chart just as much stuff... you simply had to do it with a pen, and if you made a mistake, you had to cross it out in red, file it anyway, and go get a blank chart to copy it all onto. Then there was also the travel time aspect; when patient C was issued a new RX, you had to physically walk down to records to get the medication histor

      • by FlyingGuy (989135)

        Pls see the post above.

        • When I was still practising I worked out I was spending around 3 hours a week just transcribing prescription cards from full ones to fresh ones because the card served as the nurses administration record as well - a total waste of my time as a qualified doctor, but legally it had to be me because they were prescriptions.

    • by FlyingGuy (989135)

      Well is it really better? When my son goes to the doctor for his annual checkup ( a 9 year old ) the doctor spends most of the time logging into ( if it works ) some windows box, then getting to the screen to lookup my son's medical records, then typing in why he is there. That takes about 1/3 of the scheduled slot. Then the exam followed by more intermediate typing, followed by more questions from him, answers by my son, me and his mother ( if we can both be there ) followed by yet more typing.

      All in al

      • by FlyingGuy (989135)

        Sorry I was replying to the other post below.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Sarten-X (1102295)

        So what happens to those notes? Are they copied into a permanent record? Are they made available to anyone who needs them? Or are they ignored, as in the case of my father, who suffered an allergic reaction to a surgical disinfectant, because his allergy information was compared (by a human, mind you) against the list of materials to be used, and they missed that one note?

        Paper records are great for recording notes that the doctor never wants to see again. Anything that might be useful in the future should

      • by b4dc0d3r (1268512)

        Your doctor needs a medical transcriptionist, which would raise costs, and have the staff open the patients' charts before you are called back. If you have a complaint, this person is providing a service and you are free to share your concerns or find a new doctor. I'd share my concerns because it will benefit all of the doc's patients in addition to yourself.

        Blaming technology for its incompetent users requires you to distinguish which is the cause of the problems. A child services applciation that auto

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by SonnyDog09 (1500475)

        bad in the old ways the doctor made a few salient notes here and there and 90% of the time was used to address issues and or questions about my sons health instead of dicking around with a computer.

        The problem with the "bad old ways" was that no-one could read the doctor's writing. If the data is entered into the EHR, not only can all of the other care providers that see your son understand what your doctor entered, but if the entries are coded correctly using one of the standardized medical vocabularies like SNOMED-CT, for example, then the computerized decision support systems can look at your son's condition and alert the provider before the inject him with something that will kill him. Being able

    • by khallow (566160)

      I've been in hospitals with digitized systems. The nurses simply don't have the time to do data entry on top of their jobs.

      Sounds like those nurses didn't have time to do whatever the digital system replaces either.

      People who aren't attended to at all because the nurse has to spend an extra 15 minutes per patient per room stop to handle data entry overhead.

      Then hire more nurses so they can do their jobs. What you're tell me is that a 1000 bed hospital which I guestimate to require 12,000 bed visits (assuming a full hospital and one visit per two hours on average over the course of a day) would require roughly 125 years of solid labor per year in order to keep up with the alleged data entry overhead. That's somewhere around 350 nurses just devoted to data entry. I doubt

  • This won't work, since it cannot be outsourced to India.
  • I think it has more do with finding IT workers willing to work in the field then it does a actual shortage. I can only speak for myself but I just don't see many positive aspects to working in health IT.

  • I just spent three semesters at a community college in San Francisco, studying system administration. High on my list of places I'd like to work is the healthcare industry, given that I want to find work that actually helps people, and that the healthcare industry is one of the places they're taking personal privacy most seriously. Had this program been available at the school where I studied, it would have helped me enormously. I'd gladly spend more time in school if the financing were available.

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