4 healthcare CIOs top Forbes' most innovative list

When COVID-19 began to quickly spread, these CIOs helped keep their business afloat by rapidly enabling new technological capabilities. They launched telehealth services, utilized tech to cut costs and used drones to deliver urgent medical supplies. These are the top four innovation chiefs in healthcare, according to an April 29 Forbes report. 

Forbes ranked the top 50 CIOs — and those with equivalent titles — who highlighted how the role is evolving and whose quick innovation saved North American businesses following the pandemic.

The following four healthcare executives are listed in alphabetical order:

1. Paola Arbour, CIO
Tenet Healthcare 

The Dallas-based health system operates 65 hospitals and hundreds of other healthcare facilities. It has built up a complex technology footprint with more than 700 suppliers. Ms. Arbour launched a multiyear project to clarify what benefits the health system is getting in technology and what areas can be trimmed, saving it millions of dollars each year.

2. Suja Chandrasekaran, chief digital and information officer
CommonSpirit Health

The Chicago health system, a nonprofit whose revenues were nearly $30 billion in its fiscal year ended June 2020, supported more than 1.5 million telehealth visits during the pandemic. It uses machine learning to provide data-driven insight to medical staff at locations in 21 states. Ms. Chandrasekaran is a member of T200, a group of women in tech who help other women advance into tech leadership roles.

3. Justin Mennen, CIO
Rite Aid

Mr. Mennen is a driver behind reimagining the store layout and launching telehealth services. The Camp Hill, Pa.-based pharmacy and retail outlet had already been building its technology to transform its stores before the pandemic struck. The company generated $24 billion in its fiscal year to Feb. 27 between its 2,400 stores. 

4. Angela Yochem, chief transformation and digital officer
Novant Health 

Ms. Yochem started at the Winston-Salem, N.C.-based health system in 2018 with a vision for bringing patients and caregivers into a digitally enabled community. She launched artificial intelligence-based image analysis and remote consultations with neurosurgeons, which have cut the average time to get treatment for strokes by a third of the national average. During the pandemic, Ms. Yochem partnered with a drone company to use drones to deliver urgent supplies to medical campuses in North Carolina. Her vision of tech-integrated health helped the system generate $5.7 billion in revenue last year.



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