Computers and networked communication transformed human civilization even more so than steam or electrification, in my opinion. Together, they are fascinating in their own right, make possible other objects of passion, such as cognitive science, artificial intelligence, and workflow technology, and provide tools, platforms, and channels to stay up to date, share, and discuss.
In a strange and counter-intuitive way, IT's influence is so pervasive and ubiquitous, I scarcely notice it. I take it so much for granted it seems odd to reflect on its influence. Now that's influential!
Workflow technology in healthcare: During the last six years, I've been a judge for several annual awards given for business process management and case management case studies. I am usually assigned the healthcare-related award applications. During this process, I have learned and been inspired so much. Many of these examples of workflow technology applied to healthcare can be found in the just published Business Process Management in Healthcare, Second Edition (disclaimer, I wrote a chapter and foreword).
Two MDs, two PhDs, a merry band of healthcare workflowistas inspire me.
Jim Legan, MD, (follow Jim on Twitter at @Jimmie_Vanagon and read about him here) loves his health IT-enabled EHR workflows! Jim not only shares his ambulatory health IT workflow experience and knowledge, but also listens enthusiastically to every person he meets on health IT social media. Jim's passion for his#ProjectedEHR project rivals my own passion for workflow technology in healthcare.
Jerome Carter, MD (@EHRscience), in his blog EHR Science, investigates workflow notations, models clinical workflows, and reviews business process management systems with an eye toward their clinical application. He is as stubborn as I am, regarding continually campaigning for more workflow thinking and use of workflow technology in healthcare and health IT.
Wil van der Aalst, PhD (@wvdaalst) is a full professor at the Department of Mathematics Computer Science at the Eindhoven University of Technology. He has researched and written extensively about process-aware information systems, the science behind workflow technology, business process management, and other technologies embedding process-aware functionality. While Wil does not consider himself a medical informatics researcher, many of Wil's scholarly works are, essentially, about medical workflow informatics. Read my 2013 interview with Wil.
Hajo Reijers, PhD (@profBPM) is full professor in Business Informatics at the Department of Computer Science of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. Hajo had extensive practical experience in the IT industry before he became an academic. As such, his workflow research, especially in healthcare and health IT, continues to have many practical implications for workaday application of workflow technology in healthcare. He sympathetically participates in a growing contingent of health IT workflowistas on Twitter. Read my 2013 interview with Hajo.
In closing, I dedicate this short account of who inspires me in health IT to a growing band of healthcare workflowistas. You know who you are! (Please forgive me, William Shakespeare, for so compressively, and politically correctly, appropriating your famous St. Crispen's Day Speech from Henry, V.
We few, we happy few, we band of workflowistas— Charles Webster MD ⎌ (@wareFLO) August 26, 2014
4 he or she 2day that sheds his or her blood w/me
Shall b my bro/sis; be s/he ne'er so vile