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Author: Elyse, PMP, CPHIMS
December 4, 2010


Interesting items from this past week, looks like actual Electronic Medical Records expertise is one of the Robert Half Technology Survey skill sets desired in potential employees. Needless to say we have come a long way baby!

In a TechRepublic blog post on IT skill sets in demand, EMR expertise was added to the bottom of the list, but still made the listing.

1. PROGRAMMING - SPECIFICALLY, KNOWLEDGE OF .NET, JAVA, MYSQL, PHP, SILVERLIGHT, FLEX AS WELL AS PORTAL TECHNOLOGIES LIKE SHAREPOINT.

2. A BUSINESS MINDSET - MENTIONED FOR SEVERAL YEARS RUNNING, THE NEED FOR THIS SKILL SET IS NOT GOING AWAY. ORGANIZATIONS ARE YAMMERING FOR THOSE PEOPLE WHO UNDERSTAND HOW TECHNOLOGY SUPPORTS BROADER BUSINESS OBJECTIVES AND WHO HAVE THE MANAGEMENT SKILLS TO MAKE THEM HAPPEN.

3. TECHNOLOGICAL PROFICIENCY - THOSE WITH KNOWLEDGE OF ONE OR MORE OF THE MAJOR ERP PACKAGES ARE IN DEMAND SINCE FIRMS ARE SEEKING TO MAXIMIZE THEIR EXISTING INFORMATION SYSTEMS OR TO RESTART INITIATIVES THAT WERE PUT ON HOLD LAST YEAR.

4. SECURITY - COMPANIES WANT PEOPLE WHO CAN KEEP THEIR INFORMATION SAFE AND SECURE.

5. INFRASTRUCTURE SUPPORT -- COMPANIES ARE HIRING SUPPORT PROS AND PC TECHNICIANS, PRIMARILY ON A PROJECT BASIS, AS THEY UPGRADE THEIR OSS.

6. NETWORKING -- WITH IMPLEMENTATIONS OF VIRTUALIZATION AND CLOUD COMPUTING TECHNOLOGY, FIRMS ARE SEEKING IT PROS WITH A BLEND OF SERVER, SOFTWARE, AND NETWORKING SKILLS.

7. ELECTRONIC MEDICAL RECORDS -- HEALTH CARE FIRMS ACROSS THE U.S. ARE IN NEED OF IT PROS WITH THE EXPERTISE TO INSTALL AND SUPPORT MEDICAL RECORDS SOFTWARE.

What is truly interesting is that implementing an EMR is actually the combination of the above needed skill sets. It truly does take a team with understanding of Healthcare nuances. You will need individuals with programming expertise and will probably specialize in integration expertise as far as HL7 and with the fiscal intermediaries. A business mindset and technical proficiency is just a necessary component of any IT professional, should be standard as showing up to work dressed in clothes. Security is definitely up there as needed in EMR implementations. Understanding role-based security, forensic reviews to see who looked at what information at what time, assuring e-phi and company specific information is safe also a key component. Infrastructure support and networking are needed components as after all most hospitals have 1970 designed nursing stations and facilities. It is rare to have a new digital hospital from the ground up. Going to need the infrastructure and networking understanding to have the EMR application deployed.

So all in all, while it is a needed skill it is a part of the skill set, while also understanding what orders are? and speaking the workflow healthcare lingo. So we are making good progress towards understanding the need of EMR expertise.

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