Becker's Health IT + Clinical Leadership + Pharmacy: 4 Questions with CT Lin, Chief Medical Information Officer for UCHealth

CT Lin, MD, FACP, FAMIA, serves as Chief Medical Information Officer for UCHealth.

On May 20th, Dr. Lin will serve on the panel "Physicians and EHRs: How to Limit Physician Frustration and Burnout" at Becker's Hospital Review 3rd Annual Health IT + Clinical Leadership + Pharmacy Conference. As part of an ongoing series, Becker's is talking to healthcare leaders who plan to speak at the conference, which will take place on May 19-21, 2020 in Chicago.

To learn more about the conference and Dr. Lin's session, click here.

Question: What initiative are you most excited about today at your healthcare organization? How will it affect the future of healthcare delivery?

CT Lin: We have implemented a Virtual Health Center, with critical care physicians, nurses and other staff monitoring ICU patients, med/surg patients, and at-risk ‘sitter’ patients. We are hosting virtual urgent care, virtual specialty care, and virtual primary care. We are using this team to interface with our predictive and prescriptive algorithms to improve the signal-to-noise ratio of alerts for our front line staff. This partnership is improving quality, saving time, and saving lives.

Q: What is the most important lesson you've learned about delivering excellent patient experience?

CL: Perhaps the biggest success we’ve had in improving patient experience is investing in optimizing teamwork in the clinic. Our EHR Sprint teams spend 2 weeks diving deeply into one clinic, fixing technology, re-training the use of the EHR, and exemplifying and teaching high-performance teamwork. It is the trust and teamwork that transforms patient care.

Q: What do you see as the most dangerous trend in healthcare right now?

CL: Over-reliance on technology often leads to unanticipated consequences. The technology adoption curve always starts with “the peak of overinflated expectations” followed soon by “the valley of despair.” We find that we can mitigate that valley by having a thoughtful team of physician informaticists who understand patient care AS WELL AS technology, communication, leadership and change management. These invaluable individuals lead teams that can anticipate and avoid risks to reach our goals.

Q: What future health IT capability will have the most significant impact on clinical workflows or patient outcomes?

CL: “Sunshine is the best disinfectant.” I believe that information transparency with patients leads to better outcomes. Our organization has pushed hard to show more data to the patient in real-time, including open test results, open notes, co-pay costs on prescriptions, cost estimators for future procedures, and the ability for patients and physicians to co-produce progress notes together. A more engaged patient is a healthier patient. We need a culture shift among traditionally-privacy-oriented physicians to achieve this goal. This is our hard work.


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