CHIME15 Recap Part II: CNN’s Fareed Zakaria on Healthcare’s Political, Not IT Revolution

In part II of our CHIME15 Fall Forum recap, we focus on the message of Friday’s conference keynote speaker Fareed Zakaria. Zakaria is the host of CNN‘s Fareed Zakaria GPS, and he writes a weekly column for The Washington Post.

In our first CHIME15 recap, we highlighted that CHIME’s c-suite survey pointed to being able to elicit change as the most critical skill for today’s healthcare CIOs. However, in Zakaria’s speech, he seemed to emphasize this great responsibility of healthcare executives more so beyond IT fixes. According to Zakaria, information technology cannot be the magic bullet for America’s healthcare problems.

“I don’t mean to be the bearer of bad news,” Zakaria said. “What I mean is that you have a very complicated job ahead of you, which is the structure. In addition to that, you have a Democratic system, which makes it very hard to change the structure.”

According to Zakaria, healthcare isn’t going to operate like any other market because the fundamental structure raises difficulty in achieving certain economies of scale.

Zakaria said that the U.S. has hoped to find a technological fix all to magically get around issues. Instead, he said, “I think, more likely we’re going to have to do the hard work of unraveling the system that we have in place and figuring out how you actually make some hard political decisions that force you to choose, you know, when you’re 85 years, do you need a double hip replacement?”

The revolution needed here is not based on information, but a political revolution.

What are your thoughts in response to Zakaria’s message? Let us know!

Agents of Change

This year’s island themed CHIME15 Fall Forum created quite a splash as CHIME unveiled the full results of its year-long CIO survey in the session “The Evolving Role of the CIO: Aligning CIO Perspectives with the Executive Team.” CHIME surveyed 123 CIOs across the country, along with some CEOs and other c-suite-executive colleagues of those CIOs, to compile results.

Among the most significant findings, the survey found that both CIOs and other c-suite executives agreed that CIOs’ will be change agents within their organizations over the next several years. However, surveyed c-suite executives held a heighted belief (over CIOs’) that CIOs will need to be emerging technology innovators to proactively push organizations forward. Opinions aligned that CIOs cannot simply meet required operational tasks. They must now proactively lead beyond.

agents of change

While change management earned the most votes as the most important CIO attribute, other survey options included talent management, senior management leadership, knowledge management and analytics, emerging technology and innovation and operational management.

According to Tim Zoph, session co-presenter and former CIO of Northwestern Medicine, if we think the healthcare industry is fast-paced now, it’s about to get even more chaotic. “There are a lot of forces for change, including organizational consolidation, consumerism, precision medicine, regulatory developments and payment model changes,” Zoph said.

Stay tuned for part II of our CHIME15 Fall Forum recap on the HITStoltenblog!