IT Forefront

To leverage new tech, you need strong infrastructure. Here's how INFRAM can help.

by Anita Mago and Jordan Angers

The HIMSS Analytics Infrastructure Adoption Model (INFRAM) has been on the market for over a year now, and it's still gaining traction. The model is increasingly popular as health care organisations optimise EHRs, manage cybersecurity concerns, and invest in infrastructure as the first step on their digital journey.

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INFRAM helps organisations assess and develop infrastructure capabilities. For anyone familiar with the benefits of the HIMSS Electronic Medical Record Adoption Model (EMRAM), INFRAM is the counterpart for infrastructure development. INFRAM is an 8-stage model (0-7) that measures infrastructure capabilities across five areas: mobility, security, collaboration, transport, and data center.  Below is the full INFRAM assessment.

The model defines and tracks capabilities to improve care delivery, reduce risk, and support strategic goals. The model is especially helpful in showing how infrastructure maturity levels directly impact clinical experience and outcomes, making a strong strategic case for investment in infrastructure.

INFRAM is helpful in the changing landscape of health care

Health care is changing rapidly, requiring increased digitisation and new technology. There is always a new technology for hospitals to invest in, and with so many options, organisations tend to focus on the new and shiny, while ignoring the infrastructure needed to support it.

Organisations that neglect infrastructure don't get the most out of their technological investments. Just look at EHRs, the "IT villains" in patient care and physician satisfaction. No physician entered the health care field with dreams of staring at a computer screen all day, and bad EHR systems disrupt workflow and prevent physicians from focusing on patients: It takes too long to input notes, it's frustrating when your connection drops, or the user interface is confusing.

Yet hospitals continue to invest millions, or even billions, implementing EHR systems. They invest even more money troubleshooting. But the problems are never solved, because EHR systems are only as good as the infrastructure supporting them.

Strong infrastructure makes your life easier

The introduction of INFRAM has shone a light on an often overlooked, but critical piece of IT strategy—infrastructure. By evaluating the state of current infrastructure and providing a model for improvement, INFRAM bolsters IT investments such as EHRs.

And unlike other methods of assessments that take months, INFRAM assessments only take a few weeks, enabling organisations to attack strategic goals earlier and more effectively. INFRAM helps leaders work together towards shared goals by identifying gaps in the infrastructure and the path to upgrading capabilities. By recognising infrastructure as the foundation for technological and strategic advancement, INFRAM enables organisations to optimise EHRs, enable cybersecurity measures, and begin their digital transformation.

 

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