Key Takeaways

In the latest episode of the Memora Health Care Delivery Podcast, host and Memora CEO Manav Sevak chats with Dr. Jake Lancaster, MD, MHA, MS, FAMIA, Chief Medical Information Officer and Chief Medical Officer for Baptist Memorial Healthcare, about the evolution of the CMIO role and how CMIOs are laser-focused on technologies that relieve the administrative burden from providers. Read on to learn more about what it's like to be the bridge between the clinical and technical sides of care delivery.

What is a Chief Medical Information Officer (CMIO)?

Chief Medical Information Officer (CMIO) positions are relatively new in healthcare and over time, they’ve evolved from managing EHR implementations to EHR optimization, strategic input on AI, population health efforts, and patient engagement initiatives. In today’s healthcare ecosystem, Dr. Lancaster and his CMIO peers are consistently assessing new technologies that can create a better workflow for physicians. As an Internal Medicine physician by training, Dr. Lancaster uniquely understands that providers need technology solutions that relieve providers and care teams from administrative burden.

How can digital health help streamline clinical workflows?

Providers continue to feel overwhelmed with the sheer amount of manual follow-up and clerical tasks that they are required to complete within their respective EHRs and, often, these tasks consume time that providers would like to spend doing what they went to medical school for in the first place — treating patients! With the EHR message overload, providers have no other choice than to work outside of work, reducing the free time they deserve and contributing to their job dissatisfaction and symptoms of burnout. In fact, 63% of physicians surveyed reported at least one symptom of burnout at the end of 2021 and the beginning of 2022, an increase from 44% in 2017 and 46% in 2011.

To help their healthcare systems identify the best ways to address provider burnout, CMIOs must be the bridge between clinical teams, technical teams, and administrative teams. Effectively communicating across those disciplines and helping each to understand the priorities of the other is a key pillar of the CMIO role. One way that Dr. Lancaster has been able to achieve alignment with appropriate stakeholders across his enterprise has been building a steering committee that will evaluate new technologies to implement. Here are a few of the most critical questions Dr. Lancaster’s steering committee must address about a solution they are vetting in order to implement any new, innovative technologies across their healthcare system:

  • Is this technology going to have a big, positive impact on clinical outcomes?
  • Does this technology improve patient satisfaction and other core quality measures?
  • Is this technology going to have a positive return on investment (ROI)?
  • Above all, will this technology improve patient safety?

So, what’s next? It’s no secret that the state of the healthcare system in the U.S. has its challenges, but it is also a very exciting time to be innovating in the space. For instance, emerging healthtech fields like intelligent care enablement — scalable technology that supports both patients and care teams through complex clinical episodes — show incredible promise for comprehensively streamlining and improving care delivery.

For Dr. Lancaster and his team at Baptist, they are experimenting with reducing administrative burden through ambient dictation, eliminating the need for their providers to manually type patient visit notes. CMS and AMA have also worked to reduce some of their cumbersome documentation requirements. At the same time, there's still plenty of opportunity to further reduce administrative burden by leveraging other technologies. Explore our infographic to see how we’re solving for healthcare’s worsening provider burnout trend and taking care teams from feeling super stressed to feeling superhuman.

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