By Tommy Lewis, CPHIMS, FHIMSS; Past President TN HIMSS; Chief Transformation Officer Tivity Health

Well for me it was nine airports over a period of 11 days and I was thrilled to get back to Nashville on the morning of Thursday June 13; even after a long raucous red eye flight from Los Angeles with some energetic people of all age groups Bonnaroo-bound.  Had it been any other organization, I would have bailed but TN HIMSS hosted its fourth and seemingly largest CIO dinner to date later that evening. 

The event was sold out with a talented group of executives spanning every sector of the healthcare market representing top notch organizations and from such cities as Kansas City and Austin.  The guest speakers this time were Alan Smith, MPH and Dr. Christopher Rehm, both of LifePoint Health.  Alan is the Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer and Dr. Rehm is the Chief Medical Information Officer.  The topic of the evening was one that I couldn’t afford to miss:  Integration and Transformation Efforts of a Large Scale Merger.  These are things that you don’t normally talk about at parties but this night was an exception. 

Our speakers began the discussion talking about the relationship between the CIO and the CMIO and the trust that must be afforded to one another in order to be successful.  These organizations have been through two mergers in two and a half years.  They have multiple EMRs.  They have had to become adept at managing with diverse and often ambiguous environments.  They’ve learned how to rationalize solutions, tools and services without jeopardizing quality, safety and care.  These leaders are dealing with the usual suspects of private equity, cost synergies, roadmaps, stabilization and optimization and much more, but they’ve found that the people side of integration has been the most challenging including managing turnover during times of uncertainty.

I was most fascinated by the discussion around their idea of “reimagining the hospital service center”.   M&A often involves deciding which technology or process will be chosen going forward.  However, LifePoint has determined that in order to serve their chosen markets well, they have to become more efficient in delivering care.  Hence, the reimagined hospital service center (HSC). 

So even though we don’t talk about these things at parties, we need these guys on that wall.  We want them on that wall.  So TN HIMSS just says “Thank You!”

Aside from our featured guests, special thanks go out to the presenting sponsor of this event, HCTEC.  Bill Grana and Rob Borella welcomed guests in their own special way.  TN HIMSS is proud of the longstanding and high quality relationship we enjoy with HCTEC, also an annual sponsor of TN HIMSS.