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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

adieu, 2014

Been an interesting year, and I expect that 2015 will be as well across a variety of health care and Health IT fronts. ObamaCare will again be in the dock before SCOTUS in March and under renewed assault in the Republican-majority Congress, ICD-10 looms (will it yet again be kicked down the road?).
Health IT In 2015: What's In The Cards?

Healthcare IT professionals are in for another busy year in 2015, as medical organizations look for ways to build on the groundwork they've already laid with their investments in electronic health records (EHRs), early big data and analytics trials, and experiments in patient engagement and population health.

They'll also need to address federal mandates including Meaningful Use Stage 2, the push-pull of ICD-10 deadlines, and the government's demand for healthcare systems interoperability. No matter who resides at the White House after the 2016 election, throughout 2015 healthcare organizations should act as though the Affordable Care Act -- aka Obamacare -- will survive, in some form or another, several executives predicted...
Meaningful Use 2014 closes today (with disappointing attestation numbers as of the last ONC reporting), with the future of the program in some doubt (we're now going to be largely into the reimbursement reduction penalty phase, with most of the incentive money having been doled out). 2015 should shed firmer light on the viability of ACOs. Evidence is thus far mixed and too short of duration.

The Interoperababble debate will no doubt continue unabated. To that end, I have invited Australia's Grahame Grieve to do a guest cross-post on the topic (without any editing on my part), in light of his HL7 FHIR API expertise. He politely takes issue with my "Standard Data Dictionary" rant and my questioning of here, and here.

The progress of FHIR initiative bears close watching.

I guess my little blog continues to add something of value to the fray. Just crossed a third of a million hits (since I started tracking them after about a year of posting).

No sponsors, no "monetization" of any kind. Just a semi-retired lone wolf with an attitude and an aching back.

Books on deck for review (to cite just two):

The more I re-read Vik's book, the more I like it. See my review. See also his latest post on THCB. A curmudgeonly caller of bullshit, he is.

I've just started "The Art of Medicine." It will continue the riff I started in a prior post. In 2015 I will also continue to expand on the theme I started with my June 25th "Talking Stick" post and its linked brethren.

I got a totally unexpected invite recently.

Small group private dinner with athenahealth CEO Jonathan Bush. Flattered to be asked (particular given the shot I took at him in 2011 after he dissed the RECs at HIMSS). Definitely going.

Have to say, I'm lovin' this little Christmas gift from my Grandson (below).

Today (New Year's Eve) is my wife's birthday. We've now been together almost 41 years. Meeting her in March of 1974 was by far the best thing that ever happened to me.

Also: congratulations to our son Nick (a.k.a. "Matt") on his December 2014 graduation with distinction from the Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland. B.S. in Operations Management.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Year's Eve and a prosperous 2015.

Oh, and, uh, ROLL TIDE!


My wife's cousin Scotty has had a 130 ft high grain tower erected on the family farm via which to deliver corn and soybeans from the trucks into the grain silos. My first thought was "tornado magnet."

Of course, I climbed to the top.

Bracing ascent. Great view. I wanted to go back up and do a 360 panorama shot, but it rained thereafter until we had to come back home. Next time.

More to come...

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