Hospitals Hunt for Health IT Input from Physicians

Health Data Management issued a report this month stating that an increasing number of hospitals have resorted to paying physicians to participate in health IT meetings.

Health Data Management issued a report this month stating that an increasing number of hospitals have resorted to paying physicians to participate in health IT meetings. Dick Gibson, CIO of Legacy Health System, a six-hospital system, is planning on giving 10 doctors on a physician advisory council $120 hour for four to eight hours per week in order to come up with the best inpatient and outpatient electronic health record system possible. "I cannot rely on volunteer help. The task is just too important," Gibson said.

This is certainly not the first time physicians have been paid for their health IT input. Since 2004, physicians on a CPOE committee at Aurora Healthcare have been paid to attend monthly meetings. Mike Gorczynski, director of medical informatics at Aurora Healthcare wanted “to gain a higher level of confidence that the meetings would be attended,” he said.

It seems that more and more CIOs are concluding that, in order to get the job done right, they need to pay physicians for their input. This seems like the best idea, given that physicians are busy enough as it is; receiving compensation for their ideas and suggestions no doubt makes it easier to sit down and dedicate some time to improving health IT.

Do you serve (or know anyone who serves) on a health IT board? Are you compensated for your time? Let us know what you think about physician involvement in health IT evolution.