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The Official Blog of Health Level Seven® International


When Engaging with Healthcare, Come Prepared

[fa icon="calendar"] Feb 8, 2024 10:20:49 AM / by Elizabeth Sprouse

collaboration team group at table

5 Tips for Getting Your App/Pilot/Project from Idea to Implementation

Are you ready to identify healthcare partners for your real-world pilot?

Have an app developed, but don’t know how to break into healthcare?

Or, perhaps you’ve received a “yes” from healthcare, but now find yourself in a spiral of administrative approvals.

We all have impactful, valuable projects; however, at least in the case of healthcare, we are navigating an industry facing myriad challenges – financial pressure, staff shortages, regulatory compliance. Make it easy for them to work with you and you’ll find a smoother path forward.

At HL7's January’s FHIR Connectathon and Working Group Meeting, Adele Stewart and Elizabeth Sprouse of Double Lantern Informatics hosted the education session “From Ghosted to Welcomed: Developing FHIR-based solutions with healthcare technology acceptance in mind.” Here are five tips from their talk. Want the rest of the scoop? Catch the full talk here.

  1. Understand workflow implications.

Build relationships with people in clinical informatics. These individuals will often help you understand workflow implications to your project that must be considered, such as:

  • Will you need to save data back to the electronic health record?
  • If you need to save back to the chart, how do you navigate this?
    • Where will it be saved?
    • Does the project involve a note that needs to be signed and/or support co-signature?
    • Does a Health Information Management committee need to be involved?
  • Does your solution involve a clinical alert? At the healthcare site, is clinical committee review needed for new alerts?
  • How will your project alter the current workflow and what training and communications must accompany go-live?

  1. Personalize your architecture diagrams.

The path to implementation will include technical and security reviews(s). Your healthcare partner will have paperwork for you. Complete it quickly to secure your place in line. You will be asked to provide architecture and data flow diagrams.

Pro tip: Personalize these diagrams with the healthcare site’s name indicated in the relevant places – not just with a “healthcare site” label.

  1. Prepare a project plan.

Chances are, you will be assigned a project manager from the healthcare site to work on your project and they likely have a portfolio of work. Come prepared with a project plan with all the typical elements, such as:

  • Scope and details regarding data that will be used/disclosed
  • Departments and operational areas affected
  • Objectives
  • Requirements
  • Timeline and milestones
  • Assumptions, constraints, risks
  • Roles and associated tasks

Most importantly, this will help the project manager line up the people needed to be involved in your project.

  1. Think about post go-live.

Your healthcare partner will need to look beyond go-live. Be prepared to discuss your support model, maintenance needs, considerations for when they upgrade their electronic health record and ongoing funding needs.

  1. Keep showing up.

The road from idea to implementation to ongoing maintenance for a healthcare project is not brief; however, for those prepared for the process and with some resilience in tow, your meaningful work has a future. Keep showing up.

Topics: FHIR, HL7, HL7 community

Elizabeth Sprouse

Written by Elizabeth Sprouse

Elizabeth Sprouse,MPH, is the founder Double Lantern Informatics.

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