How does a healthcare company’s IT area ensure that its information technology plan is aligned to the strategic plan and activities of the organization?
Healthcare company’s IT area is the foundation of the transition to conducting personalized statistical reporting in the health care sector. IT solutions allow conducting a personalized account and are the main tool for implementing the strategic plans and activities of healthcare organizations (Ciampa & Revels, 2012). This method of gathering and analyzing the health data and indicators is universal for any quantitative and qualitative research processes based on the personalized information.
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It is worth noting that information technologies significantly facilitate the work of the majority of medical personnel in connection with the fact that they help to avoid mistakes when administering medical records (Ciampa & Revels, 2012). At the same time, insufficient IT expertise of staff members does not fully meet the current requirements for health information management. Thus, it becomes essential for all the healthcare institutions to train nurses the basics of computer literacy.
Further, the use of IT provides a comprehensive personal data security and complies with legal requirements for the storage and transmission of personal data of patients. However, the use of computerized decision support systems in organizations is justified from the point of view of patients as it allows doctors to have all the information when they decide on a course of treatment (Ciampa & Revels, 2012). Such health care technologies as clinical decision support, data management, electronic health record (EHR), nursing informatics, and other ensure that the information technology plan of the healthcare institution will be aligned with the strategic plan and activities of the organization.
What are the pros and cons of a centralized versus decentralized healthcare IT organization? Is one more effective than the other?
Both centralized and decentralized health care IT organization have their pros and cons. The advantages of the centralized organization include the ability of the personnel to handle large amounts of patient information in the form of databases and the relative ease of implementation of medical and nursing decisions. Nevertheless, there are certain drawbacks. For instance, the limited liability of the auxiliary staff, which is not conducive to the rapid acquisition of patient information, thereby preventing the correctness of the development of medical decisions; and restriction of opportunities in the process of obtaining and utilizing the information.
The decentralized IT organization is more flexible than the centralized one as it gives more opportunities to speculate on the information. The advantages of this organization are the flexibility of the structure, strengthening the responsibility of the auxiliary employees, and reduced need to use the central computer (Plake, Schafermeyer, & McCarthy, 2016). However, this approach has several disadvantages as well such as the complexity of the standardization of the large number of unique developments; psychological non-acceptance of conservative employees of the new software products; uneven development of information technology at the level of local places that is primarily determined by the level of qualification of a particular health care professional.
The described advantages and disadvantages of centralized and decentralized IT organization in healthcare institutions have led to the need to adhere to the reasonable application of the approaches. It is difficult to say whether one of the methods is more effective than the other. It depends on the level, size, and expertise of the medical staff; each organization should adapt for its staff (Plake et al., 2016). Nevertheless, it should be noted that, at present, the vast majority of healthcare institutions utilizes the centralized organization of information as it is more convenient in solving the problem of data normalization and it is easier to manage the data in a single storage. With such storage, it is easier to address the issues of shared responsibility for the patient information between the various departments of the healthcare institution, though, it allows less flexibility in decision-making.
Ciampa, M., & Revels, M. (2012). Introduction to healthcare information technology. Boston, MA: Cengage.
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Plake, K., Schafermeyer, K., & McCarthy, R. (2016). Introduction to health care delivery. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.