Category: Healthcare IT Leaders

Drew Madden discusses problems with slow adoption of new tech within healthcare

Drew Madden is one of the leading figures within the healthcare IT space in the United States. He served for more than five years as the president of Nordic Consulting Partners, a firm that he was able to radically grow, turning it into one of the leading healthcare IT companies in the country today. He is currently the CEO of Evergreen Healthcare Partners, a consulting firm that seeks to create seamless integration between both the software and human elements of the nation’s healthcare system while driving down costs and increasing efficiency.

Madden says that one of the historic problems within the U.S. healthcare system has been its unwillingness or inability to adopt revolutionary technology and then adeptly apply it to increasing efficiency and bettering patient outcomes. He cites the revolution that took place in the late 1970s with respect to barcode technology. Madden points out that by the early 1980s, the majority of consumer goods in the United States were marked with UPC codes. This, coupled with UPC readers at both the point of sale and in the warehousing and stocking realms, created a revolution in the management of inventories. It created enormous cost savings for the retailers that were able to adopt it. And these cost savings were ultimately passed on to the consumer. Madden believes that it is not an exaggeration to say that barcode technology has been one of the reasons that inflation has been so historically low over the last 30 years. The cost savings across the nation’s economy that can be attributed to this revolutionary technology are hard to overstate.

Yet, at the same time, Madden said that barcode technology was not adopted by hospitals until the late 2000s. And he says that it currently is still not universally seen throughout the nation’s healthcare system. Madden says that while barcodes can lower the cost of a box a cereal, they can actually save lives when they’re applied to scanning for adverse drug reactions at the patient’s bedside. Madden says that more competition needs to be introduced so that hospitals are as quick to make capital improvements as retailers were in the ‘70s.

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Categories: Healthcare IT Leaders