February 26th, 2014

This week, we had the pleasure for the first time to be a part of Dell’s significant presence at the annual conference of the Healthcare Information Management and Systems Society (HIMSS) in Orlando, Florida. It gave us a valuable opportunity to talk to health IT professionals about our integration capabilities, and our dedication to interoperability in health IT.

In the U.S., healthcare seems to remain at a perpetual crossroads, as wave after wave of change continues to hit the industry. Most recently these changes have been driven by the healthcare law—the Affordable Care Act, and also the earlier HITECH Act that first mandated electronic record-keeping. But there is great pressure and change in health IT in other parts of the world as well, driven by similar forces: demands for new levels of service, increased care needs because of aging populations, and the inescapable requirement to keep costs down.

Integration tools are somewhat uniquely positioned to help healthcare organizations address these challenges. Our discussions with conference attendees showed this. Nearly all of them are struggling to incorporate new endpoints in the intake and delivery of patient and clinical data, especially mobile and cloud endpoints. (And they need to do this securely and compliantly, of course.)

The problem is that these endpoints are increasingly diverse, requiring health IT vendors trying to add them to their offerings to cover a lot of ground right off the bat. Plus, because of who is using all these endpoints, there is increasingly a need for elegant and friendly interfaces. Clinicians, patients, administrators, and business partners of all levels of technical expertise are the ones using them (or becoming frustrated with them).

The result is a feature set for the next generation of health IT systems that will be difficult for the vendors of these systems to provide themselves. But this is just the sort of problem that the new generation of integration tools has been designed to solve. We think that good integration drive achievement of so many worldwide healthcare goals today because it will allow healthcare organizations to incorporate whichever endpoints, systems, platforms, and interfaces work best for them. Letting them to stitch together their own ideal feature sets, so to speak. It’s a new take on “best of breed” that we saw the beginnings of this year at the HIMSS conference.