Dann Lemerand is a HIMSS Chapter Leader with the Michigan Chapter, and has been a member of HIMSS’ since 2003.
The Michigan HIMSS chapter is one of the HIMSS chapters hosting this year's Midwest Fall Technology Conference. This year's theme is "Building a Winning Team - Strategies for Healthcare IT Success."
Lemerand is the vice president of marketing and business development at RelWare, a privately held, healthcare technologies company. RelWare is a HIMSS Platinum Corporate Member. Lemerand is also an adjunct professor of health IT at Macomb Community College in southeast Michigan.
HIMSS: How did you become involved in HIMSS?
Lemerand: Our CEO was the first chapter secretary when the Michigan chapter received its charter. She got me involved as an at-large board member right away. I’ve been the chapter president for the last four years.
HIMSS: What is the most rewarding aspect of your job?
Lemerand: Networking. I enjoy meeting and talking about healthcare with people at every level of healthcare, whether it’s payers, IT, hospitals, vendors; doesn’t matter. The real joy is when you find someone that’s as passionate about health IT as you are. We can go on for hours.
HIMSS: What are some of the most notable changes you've seen in the field of health IT over the course of your career?
Lemerand: The biggest changes I’ve seen in the 12 years I’ve been in this field involve adoption and the acceptance of IT as a way to change the way we provide care. More significantly, the role of the CIO has moved from an infrastructure/support-type position to one of a more strategic C-level position helping shape and mold the overall mission of the hospital or healthcare organization. This is a great move for our industry.
HIMSS: What advice would you give professionals just entering the healthcare or IT field?
Lemerand: I teach health IT in the ONC Grant Program. I tell students that it’s not about the technology – that’s the easy part. It’s about how the technology is used in how we care for patients. It’s about understanding the workflow of the clinicians and how the technology facilitates that care – not the other way around.