Gartner Blog Network

“It Takes a Region:” Progress Without EHRs

by Wes Rishel  |  January 15, 2010  |  2 Comments

This is a sermonette on what can be accomplished absent EHRs and an HIE when there is a a strong leader in a leadable community.

In It Takes A Region CD-Rom: Improving Chronic Illness Care the Robert Wood Johnson foundation proselytizes work it sponsored on regional approaches to managing chronic disease by the Wagner model. I reside in Humboldt County, one of the two rural counties that comprise the region in the title. Indeed, I am proud to say that the strong leader featured in the CD-ROM is my own physician, Dr. Alan Glaseroff.

With nary an EHR in site the Humboldt Diabetes Project has brought down the A1Cs of at-risk diabetics, more than doubled follow-up on and achieved these improvements in the SP-12 scores of diabetics in the study.

Humboldt Diabetes Project SP-12 survey results.

Humboldt Diabetes Project SP-12 survey results.

The only Health IT enabler has been a Web-based community version of the open-source Chronic Disease Electronic Management System (CDEMS) registry. Physicians that started using it for diabetic care have extended their interest to other diseases.

In part, it has been seeing the work here that has directed my interest to interconnecting the community of physicians that have EHRs and the rest of the healthcare world. I actively support the roll out of EHRs and the full-bore, carefully managed exchange and look up of patient information through HIEs. At the same time the success of Alan and this community makes it clear that IT-enabled progress does not need to wait and it will be necessary to support the interface between the two communities for many years.

Additional Resources

View Free, Relevant Gartner Research

Gartner's research helps you cut through the complexity and deliver the knowledge you need to make the right decisions quickly, and with confidence.

Read Free Gartner Research


Wes Rishel
VP Distinguished Analyst
12 years at Gartner
45 years IT industry

Wes Rishel is a vice president and distinguished analyst in Gartner's healthcare provider research practice. He covers electronic medical records, interoperability, health information exchanges and the underlying technologies of healthcare IT, including application integration and standards. Read Full Bio

Thoughts on “It Takes a Region:” Progress Without EHRs

  1. Tim Elwell says:

    Wes — This announcement was made today and supports the desire to pull up community information through a standards-based HIE. We hope to make the cost of exchanges more reasonable for the community market:

    We encourage other vendors to kick the code around and become comtributors to the MOSS community.



  2. […] ← “It Takes a Region:” Progress Without EHRs […]

Comments are closed

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes, with attribution to Gartner. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.