Hospital CIOs: The biggest challenge in 2013 will be ...

From managing talent to fostering teamwork, healthcare technology leaders are prepping for change

Healthcare technology professionals have had their fill of challenges in 2012, from working to meet Stage 1 of Meaningful Use, to preparing for other government initiatives, such as the switch to ICD-10 coding--which has been pushed back by a year. As the year begins to wind down, we wanted to know what looming challenges will be top-of-mind for such hospital CIOs entering 2013.

Not surprisingly, Meaningful Use and ICD-10 remain in the forefront for some professionals. Stephen Stewart, CIO at Henry County Health Center in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, said the collision of both initiatives will be his organization's most pressing challenge.

"By October 2013, I need to be running Meaningful Use Stage 2 certified software; I may be able to push back starting until Jan. 1, 2014. All the while, we'll be continuing our test and training plans for ICD-10," Stewart (right) told FierceHealthIT. "Planning and early executions will be the challenge of 2013."

Stewart added that creating awareness and implementing training will be key to his organization's efforts. "We are assuming that we have to do it all with no more relief, and are preparing to do so," he said.

Ed Marx, CIO at Dallas-based Texas Health Resources, and Indranil Ganguly, CIO at Freehold Township, N.J.-based CentraState Healthcare System, both talked about business and payment models as being top issues for their facilities. Staying one step ahead of the business side of healthcare is a must, Marx (left) told FierceHealthIT, and extreme collaboration with business experts is inevitable.

Ganguly, meanwhile, told FierceHealthIT that a combination of regulatory requirements and a need for better tools and metrics will serve as drivers for staying on top of business intelligence issues.