Sunday, January 31, 2010

Attend HIMSS or AMIA?

This year, I'd really like to attend a health IT meeting. I'm torn between HIMSS and AMIA. Ideally, I would attend both. However, I don't think that's practically going to happen, so I need to choose one or the other.

I was planning on attending HIMSS until I went to the Alliance for CME meeting. After speaking with some individuals and hearing Dr. Don Detmer speaking about CME and medical informatics, I'm now more inclined to attend AMIA instead of HIMSS this year. I'd love to attend both in 2010, but I don't think that will be possible. Both meetings are very important and I'd encourage you to attend both if you're serious about pursuing a career in health information technology.

Join over 1,200 members in our social network (Non-Clinical Healthcare Professionals)

Join over 1,200 members in our social network (Non-Clinical Healthcare Professionals).  Meet physicians and other health care professionals who have an interest outside of clinical medicine. To join, visit:

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Ten practical part-time jobs for medical students

When I was a medical student, I didn't work too many part-time jobs. How do you find to work if you're studying all the time? Plus, once you begin your clinical rotations, you lose complete control of your schedule.

Some medical students need to work to survive. What type of jobs should they find? Here are a ten practical suggestions:
  1. Food services. Work in a restaurant. You'd be surprised how much you can make in tips if you work in a high-end restaurant. Of course, it can be difficult to get a job working in a high end restaurant if you don't have any restaurant experience, so it helps to start somewhere. You can even work for a coffee shop like a Starbucks.
  2. Private tutoring. You'd be surprised at how much you can earn by tutoring college and high school students. Whether it's SAT test prep or science tutoring, you can set up a nice little private tutoring business for yourself. Alternatively, you may choose to work for a tutoring agency (but you won't make as much money). 
  3. Test prep. Similar to tutoring, but consider working for a Kaplan or other type of test prep company. You'll be working with groups of students and giving lectures instead of working one-on-one with an individual student.
  4. Medical or scientific research. If you're a medical student, you may find an opportunity to get involved in some basic science or clinical research. You're killing two birds with one stone by gaining valuable research experience and generating income on the side.
  5. Blogging. Yes, if you're a good writer and you're persistent, then you can make money by blogging.  There are two major models of revenue generation: paid blogging and advertising. Some blog publishing networks will pay you $10-25 (or more) per blog post. 
  6. Medical transcription. You're familiar with those medical terms, right?
  7. Medical assistant. Some private physician offices or urgent care centers may be willing to hire you as a medical assistant. Its a great way to gain additional clinical experience.
  8. Library assistant. Every medical school has a library, so you may want to look for some jobs in the library.
  9. Technical support. You've seen those Geek Squad vehicles. If you're a technology expert, maybe you can help people with their computers. 
  10. Retail. If you mainly want a weekend job, consider a retail job. Stores in the mall often have "help wanted" signs. I'd love to work in a bookstore. If you live near a medical supply store or a book store, then you may have more luck. 
Good luck!

Met some interesting non-clinical physicians at the Alliance for CME meeting (#ACME10)

Here at the Alliance for CME meeting in New Orleans, I met several physicians who had left clinical practice to work in the medical education industry. Most hold a "medical director" role, but their roles and responsibilities vary tremendously because they are in different companies where the title "medical director" means different things.

I also met some physicians who are entrepreneurs and some who have been running their own companies in medical education, technology, consulting, etc. I look forward to maintaining these connections since they are valuable resources for other physicians who wish to learn more about leaving clinical medicine.

Friday, January 29, 2010

How to Start, Build and Run a Successful Expert Witness Practice

SEAK specializes in showing practicing physicians how to become highly successful expert witnesses. They have an upcoming conference titled:

How to Start, Build and Run a Successful Expert Witness Practice

February 3-4, 2011
Naples, FL
The Naples Beach Hotel and Golf Club

Excellent and ethical medical-legal consultants can easily double their clinical income by devoting one day a week to medical-legal matters. Time spent by physicians on such matters is commonly billed out at $400-$1000 per hour. How to Start, Build and Run a Successful Expert Witness Practice is an intensive, content rich workshop that is designed to show physicians how to start, build, and run a successful expert witness practice. This course is appropriate for physicians with all levels of medical-legal experience including prospective and novice expert medical witnesses. Physician attendees will learn from an experienced faculty in a step-by-step fashion how to start, build, and run a successful and ethical expert witness practice.

Learn more here.

Physician Executive - Sales (health IT job post)

Here's another interesting health information technology (health IT) for physicians. Cerner is a leading supplier of healthcare information technology solutions in the United States.

Physician Executive - Sales
The Physician Executive is responsible for the support of marketing, project initiatives, and product enhancement. The development of strong on-going relationships with client physicians is a key component of this role. Specific responsibilities of the Sales Physician Executive include conducting Cerner solution presentations to current and potential clients, including physicians and key executives, in support of the sales team; host client physicians during visits to Cerner's World Headquarters and reference sites; and, develop, maintain and assume long term ownership of effective relationships with client physicians, executives and key decision-makers throughout the sales process as well as during the implementation of the solution at the client site.
Click here to learn more about this opportunity on the AMIA website.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

AMIA 10x10 Program

Here's a brief summary of the AMIA 10x10 Program (directly from the AMIA website):
AMIA believes that strengthening the breadth and depth of the biomedical and health informatics workforce is a critical component in the transformation of the American health care system.  AMIA is committed to the education and training of a new generation of clinical, public health, research, and translational bioinformatics informaticians to lead the transformation of the American health care system through the deployment and use of advanced clinical computing systems of care by the end of the decade.  AMIA's 10x10 program aims to realize the goal of training 10,000 health care professionals in applied health and medical informatics by the year 2010. This training will be conducted in a wide range of settings across the United States by AMIA in collaboration with key academic partners in the biomedical and health informatics education community. The AMIA membership includes thought leaders who are the most qualified to pursue this effort through their many current and future informatics training programs. These programs have a tradition of turning out the leading thinkers, dating back more than thirty years, many of whom are now at the forefront of the health information and communication technology (HICT) revolution.
AMIA's 10x10 utilizes curricular content from existing informatics training programs and other AMIA educational initiatives with a special emphasis toward those programs with a proven track record in distance learning. The content provides a framework but also covers plenty of detail, especially in areas such as electronic and personal health records, health information exchange, standards and terminology, and health care quality and error prevention.

Currently AMIA's 10x10 courses cover the following topics in the field of informatics:
  • Clinical or health informatics
  • Clinical research informatics
  • Translational bioinformatics
  • Nursing informatics
  • Public Health informatics
AMIA’s 10x10 involves participants developing solutions to problems in real-world settings, ideally their own, guided by established informatics principles. Participants will be exposed to a set of concepts that upon completion will enable them to serve as champions in their local hospitals, outpatient offices and clinics, and other health care settings to use relevant informatics views in their health information technology projects.

Intensive in-person sessions will be located around the country, typically aligned with AMIA meetings (Summit, Spring Congress, or Annual), sometimes co-located at the institutions of higher education, or offered as satellite meetings to various professional informatics, medical, nursing or meetings of other health professional groups. These sessions will provide additional lectures, panel discussions, project work, and an opportunity for students to interact in-person with faculty who are leading educators in the field of biomedical and health informatics.
To learn more about the AMIA 10x10 Program, click here.

Master of Science in Health Informatics

I admit that it starts to get a bit confusing when you compare degrees:
  • Master of Science in Health Informatics
  • Master of Science in Medical Informatics
  • Master of Science in Biomedical Informatics
  • Master of Science in Bioinformatics
Let's talk about the Master of Science in Health Informatics today.  If you type "Master of Science in Health Informatics" into Google, several programs pop up, including:
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Northeastern University
  • The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • Saint Louis University
  • Northern Kentucky University
  • UC Davis
  • University of Central Florida
Only a few programs are currently approved by Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM). Many of these programs are offered online so that you can obtain your Master of Science in Health Informatics and continue working your day job.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Have you ever been to boot camp? The American Medical Informatics Association holds a boot camp for physicians who hold leadership positions.  How would you answer this question: Are you a physician in a leadership role at a health care provider organization?
CMIO Boot Camp is designed for Chief Medical Information Officers who want to broaden and deepen their understanding, knowledge and skills in biomedical and health informatics and the current challenges in using EHRs in the health system.
Two CMIO Boot Camps are scheduled in 2010:
Spring Boot Camp
March 24-27, 2010
Hyatt Regency Coconut Point
Bonita Springs, FL
Fall Boot Camp
September 29-October 2, 2010
The whole concept of a boot camp is quite creative. Can you imagine the conversation at work? So, where did you go for the weekend? Oh, I was at boot camp...
AMIA’s pilot CMIO Boot Camp was so successful last October that there is an on-demand schedule of two more boot camps to be rolled out in 2010.  The Spring Boot Camp for CMIOs will take place March 24-27, at the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa in Bonita Springs, Fla.  Its focus, Achieving Meaningful EHR Use, will provide a comprehensive, engaging experience for physicians embarking on CMIO leadership roles. The four-day program will provide CMIOs or those aspiring to that role with knowledge and tools essential to take the reins. CME is available. Visit for more information.
Click here to view the Boot Camp program from last year.

Epic is looking for physicians to join their Clinical Informatics team

In the spirit of "health IT" month here on, I wanted to share this job post because I know that many physicians are eager to find jobs in the health information technology industry. This job does not indicate that any formal health IT experience is necessary. Plus, software experience is not necessary! However, you can expect to do a considerable amount of traveling and it looks like they want you to live in Madison, WI. Here are the details:

Clinical Informatics

Company Overview

Epic is a national leader in software development for healthcare systems. We create and implement a wide range of integrated software for many of the largest healthcare organizations in the country. Our software improves patient care and reduces costs. Over the last 15 years we have seen steady growth, and currently, organizations using our software care for about 76 million people across the United States. That means that 1 in 4 people in the U.S. are directly affected by the work we do.
Beyond all of that Epic is an exciting, innovative place to work.

Position Summary

Use your clinical expertise to make a wider impact on healthcare and on practitioners across the country. Epic software helps physicians focus on high-quality, personalized patient care.
We are looking for physicians who can effectively demonstrate the capabilities of our software to clinicians and healthcare organizations across the country. As a member of the Clinical Informatics team, you will also serve as a liaison with existing and prospective users of our software, work with existing customers to optimize their use of the software, and provide ongoing clinical input to the research and development efforts at Epic. You will help to shape the future of healthcare delivery.


  • MD with several years of inpatient and/or outpatient experience
  • Ability to successfully present to customers
  • Willingness to travel 35-45%
  • Software experience is not required--we will train you to be an expert
  • Relocation to the Madison, WI area
To apply for this job, click here.

Attending the Alliance for CME meeting today #ACME2010

Today, I'm in New Orleans attending the annual Alliance for CME meeting. You can read more about the meeting here:

Preparing to attend the Alliance for CME meeting in New Orleans #ACME2010

Anyone who has a strong interest in developing a robust career in the world of certified CME (continuing medical education) should attend the Alliance for CME meeting. I'm eager to reconnect with colleagues and discuss all the recent proposed changes pertaining to the CME industry.

If you're following me (@DrJosephKim) on Twitter, you can follow this hashtag #ACME10 to keep up with all that's going on here in New Orleans. If you're attending the Alliance for CME meeting this year, swing by the NAAMECC (North American Association of Medical Education and Communication Companies, Inc.,) booth and say hello.

The shrinking CME industry

The CME (certified continuing medical education) industry is shrinking. According to the ACCME (Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education), there has been a significant reduction in CME providers. Here's how MMM (Medical Marketing & Media) puts it in the recent story, "ACCME reports industry shrinkage"
In the last 12 months, 142 medical-education providers either lost their accreditation to offer CME or decided not to apply for renewal, said the ACCME in a report issued last Friday. The tally includes med-ed companies, societies, hospitals and other entities which, for a variety of reasons, have found it too difficult to offer certified activities or, in some cases, to remain in operation at all...  There are now 713 accredited providers (vs. 725 in 2008) and 1,523 providers accredited by ACCME-recognized state and territory medical societies (vs. 1,600 in 2008).
Wow, 142 seems like a really large number (roughly 20% of 700). I personally know that quite a few CME companies have chosen to leave the CME industry to pursue opportunities focused on promotional medical education, advertising, etc. I really enjoy working in the CME industry, but I admit that I wonder about the future of this industry.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Public health job with the Border Health Foundation (Research and Development Specialist)

The Border Health Foundation (BHF) is a non profit organization founded in 1984. Its mission is to improve the health of the people of the Americas. The organization aims to do so by developing relationships that further educate and empower people, and maximize the utilization of resources through capacity building and public health programs addressing a myriad of health care concerns that affect low-income communities and high-risk underserved populations throughout the United States and its territories.

They are currently looking to fill a position for a Research and Development Specialist.
The BHF is now accepting applications for Research and Development
Specialist. The R & D Specialist must have experience working with various
racial/ethnic groups. The selected individual must be able to demonstrate a
history of securing grant funding from federal agencies. Individual must be
willing to travel out of state. Preferred requirements; Ph.D. or Master's in
the Social Sciences, Public Health or Anthropology, and 5 years experience
in the HIV/AIDS field. Minimum requirements Master's Degree in the Social
Science, Public Health or Anthropology and 8 years experience in the
HIV/AIDS field. Please submit your resume and 3 recent letters of reference
and salary requirements, to BHF/HR 3365 N. Campbell Ave., #141 Tucson, AZ
85719. EOE. Position opened until filled. The position is housed in BHF's
Administrative office in Tucson, Arizona.
Learn more about the Border Health Foundation

Another reason to attend HIMSS10

Click here for yet another reason to attend HIMSS10 (in case you can't seem to find enough reasons).

HIMSS = Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society

Will you be at HIMSS? 

Should you continue to practice medicine?

One question that seems to come up all the time when I speak with medical students and residents is: Should you practice medicine? 

When I speak with practicing physicians, the question is: Should you continue to practice medicine?

Dr. Zoe Kiren Deol has written a nice feature article on (Surgical Products Magazine) titled, "To Practice Or Not To Practice ... That Is The Question" and you can read it here.

She ends her editorial (blog post) with this line:
What are the possibilities for doctors who decide against a clinical career?  How wonderful and exciting to have the skills that would allow you to live several different lives during your time on earth, rather than staying in the one niche you carved out before you even knew what you were getting yourself into.  When I was in medical school, I never would have thought I would be writing a blog for a surgical products magazine.
Thanks for mentioning as a resource for physicians interested in non-clinical careers. The reality is that most medical students don't learn about non-clinical career options so many end up practicing medicine even though they don't enjoy it. They feel "trapped" in their career because they can't imagine themselves doing anything else. Is that you?

Comparing the costs of an MBA (a physician's perspective)

If you're a physician and you've been thinking about business school, you've probably been doing some cost comparison. How much will it actually cost to get an MBA?

Let's make a few assumptions here:
  • You're probably not going to a full-time program. The lost income alone would be tremendous.
  • You're thinking about part-time programs, online/distance learning programs, and executive MBA programs. 
  • You want to get an MBA from an AACSB-accredited business school.
Now, these assumptions may not apply to everyone, but for the sake of this blog post, let's take a look at some of the costs associated with an MBA based on these assumptions.

Executive MBA
  • In general, an executive MBA is the most expensive way to get an MBA. An executive MBA could cost well over $100,000. Here's an example:
  • The Wharton executive MBA (San Francisco) is $165,900 while the Wharton executive MBA (Philadelphia) is $156,600.
Online MBA
  • An online MBA from an AACSB-accredited business school can be very affordable.
  • If you pursue an MBA and you qualify for in-state tuition, then you can get an MBA for under $10,000.
  • Don't qualify for in-state tuition? Then you can still find some AACSB-accredited business schools that offer online MBAs for less than $15,000, but the average is closer to $20-25,000 for an online MBA.
Part-time MBA
  • Part-time MBA programs may be just as affordable as online MBA programs. 
  • You're primarily going to be limited by your geography, but that could work in your favor if you qualify for in-state tuition.
So, what makes the most sense? If you can afford to pay for an executive MBA, then you'll probably enjoy that learning experience compared to an online learning experience. Also, you'll gain valuable leadership skills and have the opportunity to build a strong network if you choose a solid executive MBA program. I realize that it may be difficult to justify the costs associated with an EMBA. I don't know many physicians practicing medicine who have employers who are willing to pay for an MBA. If you're a physician working in a non-clinical corporate setting, then you can probably get some tuition reimbursement from your company.

If you're "tight" on finances and you want to get an MBA to help you transition into a non-clinical career, then you may want to pursue a cost-effective alternative. Some may argue that you should get additional school loans to get the best possible education, but there are pros/cons to this type of approach. If you have a family and you can't afford to strain the family finances, then it can be difficult to justify spending over $100,000 when you could be spending $10,000 to get an MBA. I'm not trying to give advice - I'm simply stating the obvious: we're all in different financial situations and so decisions regarding MBA programs must be personalized for each individual.

I've been wrestling with this whole MBA question for several years. I still don't have an answer for myself, but maybe I'll eventually make a decision.

Monday, January 25, 2010

What's a diploma mill?

Suppose you plan to pursue an online graduate degree. Are you getting a legitimate degree or are you simply paying money to a diploma mill to receive a fake degree? Here's what Wikipedia has to say about diploma mills:
A diploma mill (also known as a degree mill) is an organization that awards academic degrees and diplomas with substandard or no academic study and without recognition by official educational accrediting bodies. The purchaser can then claim to hold an academic degree, and the organization is motivated by making a profit. These degrees are often awarded based on vaguely construed life experience. Some such organizations claim accreditation by non-recognized/unapproved accrediting bodies set up for the purposes of providing a veneer of authenticity.
There are some common misconceptions about online degrees (distance learning programs) and diploma mills. Many people think that online degrees are not legitimate because you're simply purchasing a degree. The reality is that if you attend a legitimate university online, then you'll get a legitimate degree. The problem with diploma mill arises when you pursue a degree from a university that is not legitimate.

One great resource that can help you identify diploma mills is a website called GetEducated. GetEducated tracks more than 300 fake online colleges and you can click on the "Diploma Mill Police" section to search for schools and to read accreditation reports on different online universities.

Top universities providing online graduate degrees

There are some top universities providing distance learning (or online) degrees. What does this say about the concept of distance learning? If top universities like Johns Hopkins and Stanford are willing to provide online degrees, then does this support the idea that online graduate degrees are equivalent to degrees obtained on campus?
  • Stanford University offers an online masters program in biomedical informatics
  • Johns Hopkins University offers a distance-learning master of public health
  • Northwestern University offers an online master of science in medical informatics
  • New York University (NYU) offers an online master of science in management and systems
  • Duke University offers an online master of environmental management
I think it's fair to say that we'll see other top universities that will eventually offer online graduate degrees. I doubt that all of them will, but the trend will gradually change as universities recognize that certain programs can be delivered effectively online.

The online graduate degree that interests me the most right now is the Northwestern University Master of Science in Medical Informatics (MMI). Maybe you know some physicians who are currently enrolled in this program.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Join our discussions around Health Information Technology (Health IT) this month

Since January has been designated Health IT month here on, I hope you've had an opportunity to join our forum discussions around health IT in our members-only section (remember, it's free to join our social network).

Visit: Non-Clinical Healthcare Professionals (

Thanks for being a fan on Facebook

We currently have 230 fans on Facebook on our "Non-Clinical Medical Jobs, Careers, and Opportunities for Physicians" fan page. Considering that we only launched this fan page a few months ago, we're doing fairly well. Social networking websites like Facebook can be very instrumental in helping you make some contacts in the non-clinical medical industry.

If you haven't become a fan yet, I hope you'll join the others to show your support of this website. Click here to become a fan on Facebook.

Pharmaceutical Physician group on LinkedIn

Are you trying to connect with some pharmaceutical physicians on LinkedIn? Then take a look at the Pharmaceutical Physician group on LinkedIn. 
The Pharmaceutical Physician Group is open to all currently employed pharmaceutical physicians. Our aim is to facilitate networking and discussion for medics working in the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotech industry.
You can't join if you're not a pharmaceutical physician, but you may find some interesting people in the group. Maybe you'll want to browse through that group and see how these physicians entered the pharmaceutical industry.

To view the Pharmaceutical Physician Group on LinkedIn, click here.

Traveling for work (in my non-clinical career)

There are times when I often think about the pros and cons of traveling for work. Practicing physicians generally don't fly around too much for work-related travel, but physicians who choose to leave the world of clinical medicine to work full-time in the business sector of health care are often traveling and collecting frequent flyer miles. In many ways, I'm glad that work-related travel has decreased for me. It was never too much in the first place, but now it's even less. Some people really enjoy work-related travel. It's nice to eat out and sleep in a comfortable hotel bed, but I'd rather spend time with my wife and kids.

If you're a physician and you're considering a full-time non-clinical career, then you can probably expect to travel quite a bit. I know some physicians who are traveling almost every week. They're hardly ever at home. Would you be happy if you were living out of a suitcase?

Later this week, I'll be in New Orleans for the Alliance for CME annual conference. This is a meeting that I attend every year. Last year, the meeting was in San Francisco and I took a red-eye flight back home so that I could spend a portion of the weekend with my family.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Certificate in Healthcare or Biomedical Informatics

Don't have time to pursue a master's degree in medical informatics? How about a certificate? There are several universities offering certificate programs in health IT. For instance, Drexel University offers a Certificate in Healthcare Informatics. Drexel and quite a few other universities offer these certificate through an online curriculum. Distance learning technology has improved dramatically over the past several years and it's become very popular among those interested in pursuing a career in health information technology (health IT).

HIMSS has also formed some partnerships with the following universities to offer a certificate program in biomedical informatics:
HIMSS has partnered with the Oregon Health & Science University to offer members a certificate program in healthcare information technology and a graduate certificate program in biomedical informatics at a discounted fee. HIMSS members are eligible to receive a 5% discount on tuition for both these programs. Find out more about the OHSU Graduate Certificate Program.

HIMSS has partnered with the University of Connecticut to offer members a certificate program in healthcare information technology and a graduate certificate program in biomedical informatics at a discounted fee. HIMSS members are eligible to receive a 5% discount on tuition for both these programs. More on the HIMSS/Uconn Certificate Program in Healthcare Information Technology.
Want some more information about some of these certificate programs?

Drexel University

Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU)

University of Connecticut

Northeastern University

Stanford University

University of Maryland

To see a more comprehensive list of medical, biomedical, and health informatics programs in the United States, click here.

Physician career opportunities in Canada

Sometimes, the transition from a clinical career to a non-clinical career isn't the best option. Some physicians simply need a change in scenery and if they move to a new clinical opportunity, they end up much happier.

How many physicians do you know who practice medicine in Canada? Do they seem to have a high level of job satisfaction, or do they seem disgruntled by administrative paperwork? Do they seem to be struggle with reimbursement issues and are they contemplating cash-only or concierge practice models?

It's been many years since I've visited Canada, but perhaps you may be interested in exploring your career options in Canada. I recently got a brochure in the mail describing physician career opportunities in Ontario, Canada. To learn more, visit for more information.  You may want to look at some Ontario Physician Locum Programs (OPLP) opportunities as well.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Careers as a healthcare executive

Considering a career as a healthcare executive? Consider learning about the ACHE:
The American College of Healthcare Executives is an international professional society of 30,000 healthcare executives. ACHE is known for its prestigious credentialing and educational programs and its annual Congress on Healthcare Management, which draws more than 4,000 participants each year. ACHE is also known for its journal, the Journal of Healthcare Management, and magazine, Healthcare Executive, as well as ground-breaking research and career development and public policy programs.
Here's a little intro that you'll find on the ACHE website: 
You will make decisions about your career throughout your life. No matter what stage of the decision-making process you are in, we hope that this essay will give you a better understanding of the exciting profession of healthcare management. Healthcare is one of today’s most dynamic and growing fields, with a wide range of opportunities and challenges. Healthcare executives work in a variety of settings, including hospitals and integrated delivery systems, managed care organizations, long-term care facilities, home health agencies, and consulting firms, to name a few. The American College of Healthcare Executives wants to help you make a positive, informed decision about your career. You can count on us as a resource for career advice, resume consultation, continuing education, and other career services.
Thomas C. Dolan, Ph.D., FACHE, CAE
President and Chief Executive Officer
American College of Healthcare Executives

ACHE is known for its prestigious FACHE® credential, signifying board certification in healthcare management, and its educational programs including the annual Congress on Healthcare Leadership, which draws more than 4,000 participants each year. ACHE's established network of more than 80 chapters provides access to networking, education and career development at the local level.

To learn more about the ACHE, visit:

Develop Your Career With Health Communication

Have you considered a career in medical or health communications? There are several graduate degree programs that may interest you. Here's a description from the Boston University Online Master of Science in Health Communication:
Empowering Health Communicators

Health care is a rapidly growing and ever-evolving field that relies on skilled communications professionals to craft and disseminate messages with clarity and authority on topics that influence public and personal health. From significant contributions in disease prevention, to groundbreaking campaigns in health awareness, and through efforts to improve doctor/ patient relations, Health Communicators are in demand and critical to the facilitation of public awareness and understanding of health care issues. The Boston University Online Master of Science in Health Communication program is designed to shape progressive Health Communicators, equipping them with the tools needed to effectively impact public and personal health literacy.
You can learn more about the BU program here:

Tufts University also has an MS in Health Communications and you can learn about their program here:

Emerson College has a Master of Arts (instead of Master of Science) in Health Communications. Learn about their program here:

January is National Mentoring Month (NMM)

Created by the Harvard School of Public Health and MENTOR, National Mentoring Month (NMM) is marking its ninth year in 2010. By focusing national attention on the need for mentors, as well as how each of us—individuals, businesses, government agencies, schools, faith communities and nonprofits—can work together to increase the number of mentors, we assure brighter futures for our young people.

As in years past, the Harvard School of Public Health is working with the national media to heighten awareness of mentoring and prompt individuals to volunteer to mentor. At the same time, MENTOR is working with the NMM campaign’s local partners who are organizing special NMM events in their communities with their local media. These events help interested adults learn how to turn their concern for young people into direct action by becoming mentors. The Corporation for National and Community Service, a NMM partner since 2006, promotes the month to its vast network of Senior Corps, AmeriCorps and Learn and Serve America grantees and highlights mentoring during its annual Martin Luther King Day of Service event.

NMM celebrates mentoring and the positive effect it can have on young lives. Its goals are to:
  • Raise awareness of mentoring in its various forms.
  • Recruit individuals to mentor, especially in programs that have waiting lists of young people.
  • Promote the rapid growth of mentoring by recruiting organizations to engage their constituents in mentoring.
Each year since its launch in 2002, NMM has enjoyed the strong support of the U.S. President and Congress. Additional prominent individuals who have participated in the campaign include: Maya Angelou, former President Bill Clinton, Clint Eastwood, Senator John McCain, Quincy Jones, General Colin L. Powell, Cal Ripken, Jr., Bill Russell and Usher.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Top Interviewing Tips for the Bio-Pharma Industry

There's a nice article on BioSpace by Megan Driscoll (founder and current President of PharmaLogics Recruiting) titled, "Top Interviewing Tips for the Bio-Pharma Industry." She lists some practical advice for each of the 4 stages:
Part 1 - The Telephone Screen
Part 2 - The Face-to-Face Interview
Part 3 - The Scientific Presentation
Part 4 - The Offer Stage
I think that many of the principles she describes apply outside of the bio-pharma industry as well. For many practicing clinicians who have never worked outside of the clinical setting, these tips may not be so intuitive. If you're considering a career outside of clinical medicine and you've never gone through all 4 of the stages described above, then I'd encourage you to read the full BioSpace article that's here.

HIMSS group on LinkedIn

Speaking of HIMSS, don't forget to join the HIMSS group on LinkedIn. They currently have over 23,600 members in the group.
The HIMSS Linkedin Group is for constructive and stimulating discussion regarding the optimal use of health IT (HIT) and management systems for the betterment of healthcare worldwide. The goal of the discussions and news forums, and subgroups are to lead change in the health IT and management systems field through knowledge sharing and communications among professionals.
Click here to view the group profile on LinkedIn.

Are you attending HIMSS10?

If you're seriously interested in a career in health information technology, then I hope you're planning on attending HIMSS10 (Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society 2010).

March 1-4 in Atlanta, Georgia.

Find the best possible activities that match your profile from hundreds of educational and exhibit options.
* CIOs/Senior IT Executives
* Clinical Engineers
* Consultants
* Management Engineers
* Military
* Nurses
* Payers
* Pharmacists
* Physicians
* Legal Counsel
* Project Managers
* Public Health Professionals
* Government Sector
* First Time Attendees
* Investors
Why should you attend HIMSS?  Here are some reasons:

300+ education sessions
Search for education sessions focused on the industry’s hottest topics: Meaningful Use, HITECH, HIE, standards, interoperability and more.

Join Colleagues and Leaders at the Pre-conference Symposia and Workshops
These half day and full day sessions will go in depth to address key issues and the industry’s hottest topics.

Participate in SIG Meetings
Exchange information on shared areas of interest with your peers at one or more of HIMSS Special Interest Groups.

Don’t Miss the Interoperability Showcase
See the nation’s premier forum highlighting the Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise’s (IHE) common framework for delivering interoperability across local, regional, and national health information exchanges.

For more information, visit:

Featured physician executive: David S. Tierney, M.D.

This week's featured physician executive is David S. Tierney, M.D.

David S. Tierney, MD, is President and Chief Operating Officer of Oceana Therapeutics, Inc. Previously, Dr. Tierney was the President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of Valera Pharmaceuticals, Inc., until it was acquired by Indevus Pharmaceuticals, Inc., in April 2007. From January 2000 to August 2000, Dr. Tierney served as President of Biovail Technologies, a division of Biovail Corporation, a Canadian drug delivery company, where he had responsibility for all of Biovail's research and development and regulatory and clinical activities. From March 1997 to January 2000, Dr. Tierney was Senior Vice President of Drug Development at Roberts Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal Corporation, with responsibility for all research and development ac­tiv­i­ties, and overall responsibility for drug development, medical affairs, world­wide regulatory affairs and chemical process development, as well as being part of the executive management team. From December 1989 to March 1997, Dr. Tierney was at √Član Corporation in a variety of management positions. Dr. Tierney received his medical degree from the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland, and subsequently trained in internal medicine.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

MBA vs. MS in biomedical informatics?

If you could get a graduate degree, would you choose an MBA or an MS in biomedical, medical, or health informatics? The topic of the month here at is Health Information Technology this month (January), so that's why I'm comparing these 2 graduate degrees in the context of a career in health IT.

Before we answer this question, let's consider a few other questions that will impact our answer:
  • How do you plan to leverage your graduate degree? If you get an MBA or an MS in biomedical or medical informatics, how will you use that degree?
  • What level of experience do you have in the health information technology industry?  
  • Have you mapped out a long-term career plan for yourself? Do you hope to become a CMIO? A medical director of informatics? A CEO of a company?
  • How strong is your professional social network? Are you already well-connected with high-level executives who work in health IT?  
  • Are you currently working in health IT?
If you're fully committed to a long-term career in health IT, then an MS in biomedical informatics will provide you with valuable skills that will help you grow professionally in this industry. However, an MS in medical informatics does not guarantee that you'll find a job. If you're exploring various aspects of a non-clinical career in health IT, then an MBA could be much more beneficial if you're considering careers as an entrepreneur or a marketer. Even if you choose to consult in the health IT industry, an MBA could be more beneficial than an MS in biomedical informatics. 

At the end of the day, you may find yourself pursuing both an MBA and an MS in biomedical informatics. We're lifelong learners, aren't we? If we could learn for free, then many of us would take that course. The unfortunate reality is that graduate degrees can be expensive (especially executive MBAs that can easily cost well over $150,000). Degrees in biomedical informatics are much more affordable.

If you're willing to learn online, then an online degree in either medical or biomedical informatics could be a great learning experience. If you'd like to build your professional social network and explore options outside of becoming a CMIO, then make the investment and pursue an executive MBA.

Epocrates has a new CMO and EVP of Product Development

Epocrates has a new Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and Executive Vice President (EVP) of Product Development.

Geoffrey Rutledge, MD, PhD
CMO, EVP of Product Development, Epocrates

Dr. Rutledge has been in clinical practice for over 20 years as a physician, board certified in internal and emergency medicine. While practicing at San Mateo Medical Center, he was responsible for the strategy and implementation of highly successful outpatient and emergency department clinical information systems. As a medical executive at WebMD and Wellsphere, he developed two of the most popular online consumer health information services. Previously, he taught and practiced clinical medicine at Stanford University and Harvard Medical Schools, where he was principal investigator on NIH-supported research in clinical applications of medical information systems. He graduated from McGill medical school, completed a residency in internal medicine at UCSD Medical Center, and earned a doctorate in Medical Information Sciences from Stanford University.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Webinar series about Health IT (meaningful use of EHRs)

It seems like we're getting bombarded by free webinars focusing on the topic of "meaningful use" of electronic health (or medical) records (also known as EHRs or EMRs). NextGen Healthcare Information Systems, Inc. has a series of webinars on EMR/EHRs and the first webinar is today. It's titled,  "Meaningful Use Definition: An Analysis For Medical Providers." Here's a brief description:
On December 30, 2009, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) finally released for public comment, the rulemaking document that defines Meaningful Use.

Be sure to sign up for this webinar to learn:
  • Why and how you can participate in the public comment period
  • The rulemaking document’s relationship to the healthcare reform movement
  • Why it’s important to make your EHR selection now
Over the next 60 days (January 14 through March 13) the medical community will analyze this document with the intention of helping to shape its direction. Did you know, for example, that the first incentive paid in 2011 will be based on data captured for three months in 2010?
To view the entire list of NextGen webinars, click here.

Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine January 2010

You can view the January 2010 digital edition of Pharmaceutical Executive Magazine here:
When pharmaceutical decision makers need news and insights about pharma’s future and how to respond to it, they turn to Pharmaceutical Executive magazine. From strategy to marketing to the best new ideas about sales, R&D, regulations, finance, meetings and IT, Pharmaceutical Executive covers it all.
You can also visit the Pharmaceutical Executive blog here:

Connect with other physicians on Sermo

If you're a physician, what do you know about online social networking? If you're like many other U.S. physicians, then you probably spend very little "social" time on the computer.

I'd encourage you to visit Sermo because you may really enjoy the humor, the medicine, the stories, and the remarkable photos that physicians will share when they know they're amongst colleagues. It's free to join (you must be a U.S. physician) and it only takes a minute. Click here to join Sermo.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Health Information Management webinar (complimentary)

Here's a complimentary webinar on health information management coming up in a few days (plus it will be available after the event, but you must register to access the content). This web seminar has been approved by HIMSS for up to 1.2 contact hours of continuing education credit toward renewal of the CPHIMS credential.

The Key to Addressing Regulatory Compliance While Improving your Financial Position through Effective Health Information Management

Date: Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Time: 2 p.m. Eastern / 11 a.m. Pacific
Duration: 1 Hour

Here's a brief description:
Today's healthcare environment presents a constant storm of challenges. Recent regulatory changes and the privacy and security measures enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 have presented a new set of challenges that providers must comply with, which often become a lower priority when it comes to allocating spending in uncertain economic times. These measures are critical in achieving widespread HIT adoption.

As heightened regulations with stiffened penalties go into effect, it is important that providers address privacy and security measures now - to avoid the costs later. These costs not only come in the form of steep financial penalties, but also require resource dedication, which can disrupt processes and cause further negative impact to your bottom line.
Attend this Web seminar on January 20, and you will:
• Understand the scope of the new privacy and security measures enacted with the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009 and how this is affecting Health Information Management.
• Learn how heightened HIPAA enforcement, also enacted through ARRA, is affecting Health Information Management in provider organizations like yours and what potential financial impact these stiffened penalties can have on your organization.
• Develop a comprehensive knowledge of how process improvement in Health Information Management can advance your economic position to enable success in the current economic environment.
• Discover how technology can bring value to your organization through enabling regulatory compliance and streamlining processes.
Kelly McLendon, RHIA
Health Information Xperts

Bill Kloes
Vice President and General Manager
Enterprise Imaging Group
McKesson Corporation
Chip Means
Web Editor
Healthcare IT News
Healthcare Finance News
Can't make the live event? Register now and after the event you will receive an e-mail with the complimentary presentation content.

Click here to register for this webinar

Medical, Biomedical. and Health Informatics Programs in the United States

Let me refer you to a nice resource on the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science website. The Informatics Degree Programs Summary is a resource that outlines various academic informatics programs offered in the United States. So, whether you're thinking about a master's program or even a PhD program, you should study this list.

The list is broken down into several different areas of informatics, but I'll highlight these 5 areas:
  1. Medical informatics
  2. Biomedical informatics (or bioinformatics)
  3. Health informatics
  4. Nursing informatics
  5. Pharmacy informatics
The site also lists dental informatics and others like chemoinformatics. Do we really need so many different types of health-related informatics programs? Is it really critical for us to differentiate between medical vs. biomedical informatics? Is it better for a nurse to get a degree in nursing informatics vs. health informatics? Is it getting too confusing to have all these different informatics programs?

Saturday, January 16, 2010

CAHIIM (health informatics and information management)

Are you familiar with the acronym CAHIIM?

The Commission on Accreditation for Health Informatics and Information Management Education (CAHIIM) recognizes degree-granting programs in Health Informatics and Information Management that have undergone a rigorous process of voluntary peer review and have met or exceeded the minimum Accreditation Standards as set by the CAHIIM. These programs are awarded accreditation status by the CAHIIM, which provides public recognition of such achievement.

CAHIIM Mission

CAHIIM advances the value of health informatics and information management through quality education by:
* Establishing and enforcing accreditation Standards
* Recognizing programs that meet the Standards
* Assessing student achievement
* Respecting educational innovation and diversity
* Recognizing academic institutions' autonomy
* Emphasizing the principle of volunteerism and peer review
* Embracing a culture of continuous quality improvement
Considering a graduate degree in health information management or health informatics? (not to be confused with medical informatics or biomedical informatics)

Definition: Health Information Management (HIM) at the master's degree level leads to executive level health information management, enterprise wide HIM leadership, administration, education or research. HIM is focused on the strategic and operational relevance and robustness of clinical information resources, workflow, and connectivity within the healthcare industry and public heath sectors.

Click here to see which academic programs are accredited by the CAHIIM.

Or, you can view this list (current as of 1/15/2010) of graduate programs that are accredited by the CAHIIM:
  • Claremont Graduate University
  • College of St. Scholastica
  • Oregon Health & Science University
  • University of Illinois at Chicago
  • University of Pittsburgh
  • University of Tennessee Health Science Center

Health IT is the topic of the month

In case you missed it earlier, the topic of health information technology (health IT) is the "topic of the month" here on

We'll be covering some other topics as well, but you'll see that I'm placing a heavy focus on health IT. You'll also see that we're discussing this topic in our Members-Only Forum (found here: It's free to join our social network of Non-Clinical Healthcare Professionals and we currently have over 1,150 members.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Physician Consultant in Health IT (Job Post)

This job post is from the AMDIS website:

Physician Consultant
posted 1/13/2009

Dearborn Advisors, LLC is a healthcare professional services firm that partners with healthcare organizations to maximize return on advanced clinical information technology investments. Our mission is to add value to our clients by establishing a unique leadership position in clinical systems strategy, deployment and clinician adoption by providing advisory services that measurably enhance our clients’ performance.

Free health IT webinar on "Meaningful Use"

How well do you understand "meaningful use" as defined within the HITECH provisions within the ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009)?

You may be interested in this free webinar that will review the topic of "meaningful use." It's titled:

Meaningful Use: An Update on Meeting Criteria for Federal Incentive Payments

Jan 26, 2010
12:00 p.m. Eastern / 9:00 a.m. Pacific
Join us for a critical eSeminar to discuss important new legislation for Healthcare IT.

The situation is clear - the Federal Government is serious about creating substantial improvements in Healthcare IT. One of the most important components of this groundbreaking legislation is to meet "Meaningful Use" requirements as defined by the government. Understanding this definition, and what it means to your organization in actual use, is crucial in today's world of tight budgets and limited capital expenditures.

Join us and we'll help you understand the specifics, the requirements on your organization, and how you can meet the directive.
Here are the speakers:
Harry Greenspun, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer
Dell Perot Systems Healthcare Group

Matt Krupnick
Public Policy Counsel
Dell Government Affairs

Aaron Goldberg
VP, Market Experts Group
Ziff Davis Enterprise
Click here for more information about this upcoming webinar.

Regeneron is hiring (career fair)

Regeneron is hiring and they're having a career fair in New Jersey. Here are the details:
Regeneron Career Open House
Sheraton Mahwah
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
2pm to 7pm
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals is actively hiring in the following functional areas:
  • Clinical Sciences
  • Biostatistics
  • Clinical Data Management
  • Pharmacovigilance
  • Clinical Trial Management
  • Clinical Operations
  • Regulatory Affairs
  • Medical Affairs
  • Medical Writing
  • Program Management
Candidates should have experience in the following therapeutic areas: Ophthalmology, Oncology, Inflammation, Translational Medicine, and Pain.  Interview for open positions for Regeneron Pharmaceuticals’ Clinical Division. is pleased to present the Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Career Fair. Regeneron's Clinical Division will be conducting private, one-on-one interviews to fill multiple open positions. This is not a general Career Fair. This is a chance to meet with Hiring Managers and Department Directors for private, one-on-one interviews.  For this event Regeneron is ONLY looking for candidates with experience in the functional areas listed above.

Please join us at the Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Career Fair and learn about the opportunities now available at Regeneron.  At Regeneron, we are dedicated to doing great science. We take pride in overcoming challenges and searching for new and better ways to do things. We develop products that improve the quality of people's lives. But our culture isn't just about work. We enjoy what we do and the people we work with. At Regeneron we make time for fun.

Click here for more details and to register for this career fair on the Biospace website.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Post and find jobs on Sermo

If you're a U.S. physician, you can join Sermo and post and find jobs in the "jobs" section of Sermo. Most of the jobs that are posted are for clinical positions, but occasionally you'll find a non-clinical job posted as well. I don't think that most of the Sermo physicians search that job board to look for non-clinical opportunities, but I could be wrong.

2010 Spring Managed Care Forum

Spring Managed Care Forum
April 22-23, 2010
Disney's Swan and Dolphin
Orlando, FL

Presented by:
  •  American Association of Managed Care Nurses (AAMCN)
  •  National Association of Managed Care Physicians (NAMCP)
  •  American Association of Integrated Healthcare Delivery Systems (AAIHDS)
Our Managed Care Forums bring together Medical Directors, Nurses, Case Managers and Healthcare Executives for a unique educational experience that creates unification and solidification among all parties who play a part in healthcare delivery, improving both system quality and patient outcomes.

At the 2010 Spring Managed Care Forum, you will without a doubt, increase your awareness of clinical updates and changing protocols, learn about marketplace successes to implement those strategies into your population and receive interactive networking for generating leads and future business!

The Spring Managed Care Forum is intended for:

    * Medical directors of plans, provider groups, hospital and health systems, IPAs, PHOs and other integrated delivery systems
    * Nurse executives of plans, provider groups, hospital and health systems, IPAs, PHOs and other integrated delivery systems
    * Nurse care managers of plans, provider groups, hospital and health systems, IPAs, PHOs and other integrated delivery systems
    * Vice Presidents, Directors of managed care, contracting managers from hospital and health systems
    * Executive directors and board members of IPA, PHOs and other integrated delivery systems

The Spring Managed Care Forum will offer you:
• Four different educational tracks to choose from to create a schedule that best fits YOUR individual needs - Health Management Track, Business Track, Genomics & Biotech Track and our newest addition, a Cancer Track
• Two full days of the unparalleled continuing education relative to your day-to-day needs
• Profound networking with key contacts - both influencers and decision-makers
• Access to interactive vendors with the newest and evolutionary products available for enhancing organizational quality and improving outcomes in your marketplace
• A beautiful learning environment in a warm and sunny 'Magical' Florida oasis!
$250.00 Early Bird Discount through the end of January!

To register for the 2010 Spring Forum, please click this link. When registering, please make sure to put PNEB250 in the value code of the registration form to receive the $250 Early Bird Discount but don't delay as this will only last through January 29, 2010!

Learn more about the conference by clicking here.

State-specific Requirements for Initial Medical Licensure

A common question that comes up frequently is: "I don't want to complete my residency training. Should I just get my medical license and start working?"

As you can imagine, many residents don't enjoy residency training. The grueling hours and the sleep deprivation can be disheartening.

Back in the "old days," it was relatively easy to finish internship and practice medicine as a GP (general practitioner). Many states will still grant a medical license to a medical school graduate who has completed a single year of post-graduate training (internship) if you graduated from a U.S. medical school. If you're an international/foreign medical graduate (IMG or FMG), then you'll be required to complete 2-3 years of residency training in many states.

Right now, Nevada appears to be the only state that requires 3 years of residency for U.S. medical graduates who wish to obtain a medical license. 

The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) maintains a chart that outlines the State-specific Requirements for Initial Medical Licensure. The current version was updated in June 2009 and you can view it here

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Formal education and training necessary for physicians interested in health IT?

A common question regarding the health IT industry: Does a physician need to have any formal health IT training or education to pursue careers in this industry?

The answer is: yes and no. In other words, "it depends."

Many physicians gain valuable health IT experience without any formal education or training in informatics. They don't have a master's in science in medical informatics. They never completed a biomedical informatics fellowship. They simply have the proper level of experience and they also found the right opportunities.

Will formal education/training be beneficial? Yes. However, it may not guarantee anything unless you want to stay in the world of academia and publish papers related to health IT. Physicians tend to place a tremendous amount of focus and emphasis on formal education, but we often forget that such education may not get us anywhere if we lack relevant work experience.

If you're not able to invest the time and resources to pursue formal education and training, I would suggest some of these options:
  • Attend a major health IT meeting like HIMSS, AHIMA, or AMDIS. From there, you should make every effort to meet people, ask the right questions, and determine if you need formal education (such as a master's degree, a biomedical informatics fellowship, or CPHIMS) to pursue opportunities in the health IT industry. Based on your background and your level of experience, you may conclude that you need that formal training and education.
  • Meet other physicians and nurses who currently work in health IT. Maybe they're a CMIO or a medical director of informatics. Maybe you know some nurses working in clinical informatics. Perhaps they're consulting for a health IT company. Examine their backgrounds and see how they got to those positions. One of the best way to meet people is through social networking websites like LinkedIn. Also, you can leverage Twitter and other social media tools to meet health care professionals working in health IT.
  • Get involved with health IT committees in your hospital, your outpatient practice, your clinic, etc. Volunteer your time and look for opportunities where you can contribute. Perhaps your office needs to switch from paper records to electronic records. Are you willing to spearhead a committee to choose an EHR solution and implement it? What if your hospital is trying to reduce medical errors in the CPOE system?
  • As you learn more about health IT, determine a focus area in health IT. Do you want to focus on outpatient EHR utilization? Quality control? Reducing medical errors in the hospital setting? PHR and EHR integration? Performance improvement? Data integration? Interoperability?
  • Evaluate your knowledge level regarding the health IT industry. Are you familiar with the acronyms, or do you feel lost when people throw out: CCHIT, CPOE, HIMSS, ASP, FHA, HL7, and others? 
  • How quickly can you learn, and are you able to invest time to teach yourself?
What I've found is that many physicians don't have any formal training if they have the right level of experience working with health IT committees, consulting, and looking for the right types of opportunities to demonstrate their knowledgeability about the health IT industry. However, many physicians are very busy and they don't realistically have the time to learn about the health IT industry. For them, formal training and education can be very valuable.

Use Twitter to network in the health IT industry

In 2009, I made some significant contacts in the health IT industry through Twitter. Social media can be very powerful. I met CMIOs, health IT consultants, executives in health IT start-ups, clinical informatics nurses and nursing directors, and many others. Plus, I leveraged networking opportunities at meetings like HIMSS to establish connections in the industry. You have to be an active social networker if you want to meet people and make connections. You have to be deliberate and intentional.

Naturally, health IT professionals tend to gravitate towards technology and they find themselves embracing Web 2.0 (especially the social media component). Almost every health IT professional I know uses Twitter. Therefore, if you want to jump on the health IT train, then make sure to create a Twitter account and start following people. Establish your online presence so that people will remember who you are.

I've been actively using Twitter for the last year and it's been a tremendous social networking tool. I realize that many people don't understand the basics of Twitter, but Twitter is easy to learn. Be a fast learner and demonstrate your willingness to embrace modern technology. Contribute to my blogs as a guest author and show others that you have a solid understanding of information technology in health care. Establish a robust online presence so that potential employers recognize that you are on the cutting edge of Web 2.0 (and Health 2.0 for that matter). Start by using Twitter to communicate with health IT professionals.

Applied Clinical Trials (January 2010)

Interested in a non-clinical career focused on industry-related clinical research? You may want to start reading Applied Clinical Trials. You can view the January 2010 electronic edition by clicking here. This publication is a service of Advanstar Communications.

Advanstar also publishes magazines and websites like:
  • Pharmaceutical Executive
  • BioPharm International
  • Pharmaceutical Technology
If you're really serious about a career in clinical trials, then you may want to consider pursuing your CCRA® (Certified Clinical Research Associate), CCRC® (Certified Clinical Research Coordinator), or CPI® (Certified Physician Investigator). These credentials can be achieved through the Association of Clinical Research Professionals (ACRP).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Physicians' IT Symposium: What it Means to be a Meaningful User

This year, the Physicians' IT Symposium is focusing on: What it Means to be a Meaningful User. If you've been following the discussions surrounding the HITECH (health information technology) provisions within the ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act), then you know that one of the key phrases is "meaningful use." What does that mean? How does a physician demonstrate meaningful use of an electronic health record system? Attend the Physicians' IT Symposium on February 28 and stay for HIMSS 2010 (March 1-4) in Atlanta, Georgia. You can receive CME (Continuing Medical Education) credit for attending, so maybe you should make this your CME trip for the year.

Here's a brief description of the  Physicians' IT Symposium

From the large organization to the small physician practice, this is a critical time for healthcare IT. This highly acclaimed symposium will examine planning, implementation, workflow, vendor guidance, and legal aspects of the EMR. Small interactive discussions will tackle the meaningful use criteria.
Symposium Educational Objectives - After completing this activity, the participant should be better able to:
  • Discuss the meaningful use criteria related to aspects including patient privacy, clinical information exchange and public health organizations
  • Describe malpractice implications in using electronic health records, personal health records and health information exchanges
  • Summarize questions physicians should ask their vendor before implementing electronic medical records in order to comply with meaningful use criteria.
Will you be in Georgia next month?

Review charts as a physician expert witness (legal medicine)

Many physicians have found that they can review medical charts and earn supplemental income as a physician expert witness. Some people think that they may need to testify in court, but this does not happen very frequently. We all know that many cases get settled outside of court. If you'd like to be a medical consultant for attorneys, then you should pursue a career in the field of legal medicine. 

One way to get started in the field of legal medicine is to add your name to an Expert Witness Directory. For example, SEAK has an Expert Witness Directory and they offer a 100% Money Back Guarantee. Here's what they say:
If at any time within 8-months after the publication of the first Directory in which you appear you are not completely satisfied, you may request and receive a full refund of your standard listing fee.
Let's take a look at what it means to be a physician expert witness. Here's what the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) has to say about being a physician expert witness:
  1. The physician expert witness must have a current, unrestricted license to practice The physician expert witness should be fully trained in the medical specialty or area of practice about which he or she is testifying.
  2. The physician expert witness must have current clinical experience in the medical specialty or area of practice about which he or she is testifying and during the two-year period immediately preceding the occurrence which led to the lawsuit, such person must have been actively engaged in clinical practice in the medical specialty or area of medicine about which he or she is testifying.
  3. At least one physician expert witness for the plaintiff and one physician expert for the defendant should be in the same clinical specialty as the defendant physician. (1989) (2009 COD)
Interested in legal medicine? You may want to learn about the American College of Legal Medicine (ACLM)
The Mission of the American College of Legal Medicine is to “promote the continued professional advancement of its members, as well as non-member physicians, and other interested professionals, through education, research, publications, and interdisciplinary and collaborative exchanges of information. The educational meetings are designed to improve the professional performance of the participants and focus primarily on research, methodologies, techniques, and issues and advances in the field of legal medicine. The education activities encourage interdisciplinary exchanges of ideas and information and thereby facilitate enhanced service to society in the healing arts and legal professions.”
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