Software Development

Software is the engine of information technology. Effective use of this technology can turn meaningless data into knowledge that can streamline business processes and reduce errors; two sure fire methods for reducing costs. On the otherhand, ineffective use of technology can soak up needed resources, complicate simple business processes and reduce customer satisfaction. There are few areas of business management that carry so much promise but have so great a risk. It's no wonder that businesses, or whole industries such as healthcare, that can avoid information technology will do so as long as possible.

But it is no longer possible, even in healthcare, to run a business without some type of information technology. More robust systems are available now that provide greater flexibility, can be configured for more situations and cost less than systems in the past. Healthcare providers have a choice of several Electronic Medical Records (EMR, aka Electronic Health Records, EHR) systems such as Epic, Siemens, and IDX. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has gone so far as to offer a "free" EMR called VistA-Office in order to speed the adoption of this technology to physicians.

What has caused the slow adoption of information technology in healthcare? Most analysts sight a combination of lack of standards, limited interoperability and associated costs. As a result, healthcare delivery has relied on hand-written, paper-based information systems, highly variable and error-prone.