Neal Patterson and the Mission of Health IT
We understand that healthcare technology – let alone electronic health records – is a niche field. Regardless, there are giants within our industry who were revolutionizing this kind of tech from the start. Their work has a big impact on the systems we use today and how we treat healthcare, in general.
One of those giants was Neal Patterson, Cerner CEO, who recently passed away from complications with cancer. The son of farmers, Patterson started Cerner with two partners and led the effort of digitizing health records.
An advocate of EHR interoperability and patient engagement, Patterson shared personal stories to underline the failings of our (still) current system. He was passionate about changing our healthcare system and reducing the percentage of healthcare dollars sent to insurance, which in 2012 came in around 30%.
Some of the biggest players in the healthcare industry are where they are because of personal experiences that have imbued them with a passion to change the field. They’re there because they want to make healthcare more affordable or accessible, or just more effective.
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