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Lack of healthcare IT workers slows tech progress

Lucas Mearian | March 13, 2013
Tech workers skilled in informatics are the most-sought.

Systems and data integration skills were in second place among those surveyed, with 28%, and technology and architecture support as well as data statistics and analytics were named by 10% and 9% of the respondents, respectively. Fifteen percent said they didn't know what IT skills were highest on their priority list.

Healthcare executives revisit IT talent strategies

The survey found that 54% of health insurers have acquired another organization in the past year, and with industry consolidation comes the need to integrate systems and data. Not surprisingly, insurers ranked systems and data integration skills as most important to meeting HIT priorities, and 89% think it is very important to have employees trained to integrate and analyze data from various sources.

Seventy percent of insurers said it will be very important for new hires to have informatics and data analytics skills over the next three years.

Meanwhile, drug and device companies need to support emerging methods of conducting research and be able to prove the value of drugs to public and private purchasers. Thirty-nine percent believe it is important for new hires to be skilled in health economics outcomes research.

In the biopharma industry, there's a growing need for HIT workers who are skilled in economic outcomes research and bioinformatics who can prove the value of drugs, the PwC report said.

"The IT organization remains the critical connector to delivering real-time data and metrics to make smarter business decisions," Garrett said. "Despite differing IT priorities, general IT staffing needs across the industry reflect a shared goal of improved health outcomes - particularly as payment shifts from a fee-for-service model that rewards value over volume."


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