As healthcare organizations shore up their digital systems, electronic patient records step under an especially bright spotlight. Whether you are an outpatient center, government health agency, or virtually any other type of care provider, patient data is critical to your business.
But that brings up an entirely new set of issues – how can you collect, organize, and maintain this essential information so it drives better patient outcomes rather than hinders them. That’s exactly what makes information governance so vital to your entire organization. Without it, costs go up, healthcare delivery suffers, and it’s your patients that ultimately pay the price.
What Is Information Governance?
According to the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), information governance is defined as follows:
An organization wide framework for managing information throughout its lifecycle and for supporting the organization’s strategy, operations, regulatory, legal, risk, and environmental requirements.
In simpler terms, information governance (IG) is the holistic framework you use to align the control and ongoing management of your information. Ideally, that framework drives your business objectives and meets regulatory requirements, all while supporting better patient outcomes.
Put another way, adequate IG is crucial for both the business and healthcare sides of your organization. One drives the other and, more often than not, your business and patient data are the fulcrum between the two.
Assembling Your IG Framework
With something so pivotal to every employee, patient, and stakeholder, it just makes sense to use a collaborative effort to put together your information governance. Like any initiative in your organization, you want to begin the process by establishing objectives, prioritizing what’s most important, and developing a holistic strategy to accomplish those goals.
For instance, people from your legal department, IT, and other vital teams should all have a seat at the table when creating your course of action. This should be an open discussion that focuses on identifying risks across your information systems and channels as well as any bottlenecks and pain points.
Health information management (HIM) professionals are especially important in this stage given their insights and expertise into data governance, health IT processes and solutions, analytics, and security and privacy issues.
Use Trusted Health IT Partners
Of course, all of this is easier said than done in a dynamic, evolving healthcare environment. Each of those key team members and stakeholders have their every day responsibilities to attend to as well. Unfortunately, many healthcare organizations struggle to implement even the most well-intentioned initiatives.
But that’s why Health Information Technology Solutions is such a trusted partner for developing your health information governance. We understand that schedules are tight, responsibilities lengthy, and everyone involved is still doing their part to efficiently and effectively run your organization.
Given our experience and insights into the optimal processes, health informatics tools, and team wide collaboration you need for effective IG, we provide the best of both worlds – superior results and the time you need to run your healthcare organization.