Getting Health Care Right - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Business & Finance

Getting Health Care Right

Improving care and cutting costs will bring IT into every area of health care

To understand the role business technology plays in improving health care, look no further than the "five rights." When a drug goes to a patient, it needs to be the right patient, the right drug, the right dose, the right time, and the right delivery method, such as a pill or IV.

Making sure all those rights happen is just one area in which Jody Davids, CIO of medical products and drug distributor Cardinal Health, expects business technology to play a critical role in changing the industry. IT is tightly enmeshed in the health-care industry's intensifying mission to reduce medical errors and improve patient safety and quality of care, and Cardinal's customers--large hospitals and other health-care providers--expect the company to come up with products and services to help them. "I can't think of a [Cardinal] service or product where technology isn't an important component," Davids says.

Jody Davids Photo by Sacha Lecca

Davids is passionate about getting young women interested in technology fields.

Photo of Jody Davids by Sacha Lecca
The Food and Drug Administration this month is expected to announce its final rule about requiring drug companies to put bar codes on individual-dose medicines administered to patients in hospitals and other care settings. The FDA hopes bar codes on single-dose drugs will make it easier and less expensive for hospitals to deploy computerized systems so nurses at patients' bedsides can automatically match drugs with patient records before they administer medicine, catching potential mistakes in doses, interactions, or allergies.

The FDA rule isn't expected to take effect for a couple of years, but Cardinal already provides bar-code-packaging services. It's also exploring how radio-frequency ID technology might eventually be even better than bar codes for patient drug-safety deployments, Davids says, such as using it to track drugs from manufacturer to delivery to patient. Still, RFID isn't likely to replace bar codes on drug packaging for three to five years, she predicts.

Cardinal Health didn't see much of a drop during the economic slowdown, since people get sick regardless of the economy. "It didn't slow us down. Our rate of investment was steady," Davids says.

When it comes to managing business technology, Cardinal hasn't outsourced any of its operations. The company will continue to look at outsourcing, Davids says, but she doesn't expect short-term cost savings will drive the decision. "We won't do it to save a little money. It would need to fit into the business' direction," she says.

Davids doesn't see offshore IT growth sapping tech opportunities for Americans, and one of her passions outside of work is trying to get more young people, particularly women, interested in technology fields. "The jobs left behind are the most interesting ones; they are the more creative jobs," requiring an understanding not only of technology, but of how businesses run, she says.

Davids isn't a worrier by nature. Managing the systems behind a $40 billion-a-year company doesn't give her worry lines. This mother of two teenage sons says there's only one thing that can keep her up at night: "Waiting for the garage door to open."

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Commentary
Future IT Teams Will Include More Non-Traditional Members
Lisa Morgan, Freelance Writer,  4/1/2020
News
COVID-19: Using Data to Map Infections, Hospital Beds, and More
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  3/25/2020
Commentary
Enterprise Guide to Robotic Process Automation
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  3/23/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
White Papers
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll