As we get ready to kick off the Council's healthcare workgroup, I can't help but think about the complexities and challenges healthcare IT leaders are facing today. From the uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act to declining reimbursements to ever more sophisticated security and privacy threats, the pressures you face are daunting. I'm hoping that we can, as a group, explore how TBM might help address them.
So, before we kick things off, I thought I'd share a few thoughts on how TBM might help you address some of the biggest challenges in your industry:
- Declining Reimbursements: Never before has there been a greater need for health providers to leverage technology to improve healthcare efficiency and outcomes. TBM can help by identifying IT waste and inefficiencies, such as quantifying the cost of excess capacity in storage or compute infrastructures or identifying labor spent on low-priority applications. Furthermore, by improving the accountability for infrastructure spending, TBM can help reduce demand and further optimize costs without a perceived decrease in service quality.
- Question: How do you think TBM will help you optimize IT costs? Can TBM help you optimize the cost of providing healthcare?
- Healthcare Innovation: Speaking of portfolio management, healthcare providers are increasingly investing in a broader portfolio of innovation. These include priorities such as electronic medical records (EMR), data analytics (population health, clinical, operational), telehealth technology and more. TBM helps by reporting on such spending and providing an easier means for connecting IT resources (e.g., infrastructure, people, external services) to healthcare services. As a result, healthcare leaders can use TBM to evaluate IT as a portfolio of investments and direct both CapEx and OpEx to where it will do the most good.
- Question: How are you using TBM to manage your IT as a portfolio? What are the "dimensions" of your portfolio (e.g., run/grow/transform)? What goals are set for your portfolio?
- Information Security and Privacy: In healthcare, a cyberattack can do more than just impair trust or result in fines or other penalties, it can impact patient health. As the "attack surface" expands with more health data, active medical devices, power and environmental controls and other systems, the need for strong asset management practices increases. Fortunately, TBM emphasizes asset management hygiene by often highlighting poor asset data used in the TBM model. By improving both accountability for asset data and the costs of acquiring and maintaining them, TBM often drives a virtuous cycle of asset data quality. In turn, this helps security teams and asset owners better understand their assets and vulnerabilities and prioritize remediation. Furthermore, TBM can clarify existing spending on security, sometimes revealing inadequate coverage.
- Question: How are you using TBM to improve asset data quality? Are you measuring infosec spending? If so, how?
- Cloud Adoption: Healthcare CIOs often cite public cloud adoption as a high priority. Sometimes, this is driven by the desire for improved speed to market, potentially lower costs, improved security, and freeing up mindshare to focus on more important priorities than infrastructure and platforms. TBM helps govern the usage of public cloud by driving accountability for spending and consumption. It can also be used to highlight areas for improvement, such as development environments and poorly utilization applications.
- Question: Are you adopting public cloud? If so, how are you using TBM to govern adoption?
These are just a few areas for us to consider in our discussions as a workgroup. I'd love to hear what other major challenges you're seeing for today's healthcare IT leaders and how you think TBM can help.