Chris Baldwin is CIO of Northeast Health. These folks were thinking about information integration across the full spectrum of service a half dozen years ago - and at the most senior levels. They've been consistently among the "most wired."
Chris knows his stuff and he's an all-round good guy. He has just summarized where we should be focused in Two Paths to Interoperability. Take a look.
He talks about organizational interoperability and regional interoperability. Chris has been practicing what he's preaching and, because Northeast Health has a quite comprehensive range of services, he's had the opportunity to actually make it happen.
More recently, he's started taking on the regional issues in earnest. These latter issues will be more challenging both technically and organizationally. Technically, there is no means of enforcing standards compliance even where they exist. Organizationally, because there's no central authority, such efforts rely totally on collaboration and cooperation - often among competitors. So you've got to be a diplomat as well as a wizard.
But no matter how challenging, enabling the smooth and timely flow of critical information across organizational boundaries is one of the few opportunities for leaps in productivity and improved patient care and satisfaction.