7 ways to rethink health IT innovation 

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Increased digital access by patients and widespread adaptation of artificial intelligence will be some of the main drivers of digital transformation in healthcare over the next few years, according to Daniel Marchalik, MD.

In a Nov. 30 op-ed for Harvard Business Review, Dr. Marchalik, who serves as medical director of physician well-being at Columbia, Md.-based MedStar Health, explains the design principles that new health IT inventions must embody to benefit all the main stakeholders, including providers.

Here are seven principles of health IT design that can help ensure successful innovation, according to Dr. Marchalik. He based his analysis on a 2019 study authored by Ted Melnick, MD, director of the Yale Clinical Informatics Fellowship.

1. Prioritize patient care so that it remains safe, efficient and effective.

2. Assemble a team that represents various perspectives and skillsets ranging from finance, population health and provider wellbeing.

3. Relentlessly question why things are done a certain way to ensure health IT doesn't get stuck in a cycle of "we do it this way because that how we've always done it."

4. Use human factor design principles to keep technology intuitive and user friendly.

5. Be "Darwinian" by testing innovation and only keeping the best features at every stage.

6. Assess the potential unintended consequences of human and technological interactions with each design alteration.

7. Troubleshoot problems so the proposed solutions actually solve the challenges instead of just creating technology for the sake of creating something.


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