Health IT Contributes to a Prosperous Economy

HIMSS is excited to see President Obama using the Global Center for Health Innovation in Cleveland, home to our HIMSS Innovation Center, as the site of his speech on jobs and the economy.  A prosperous economy, like the one President Obama spoke of today, can involve several different industries and arenas.  

Health information technology (IT) is a growth sector for the U.S. economy in two important areas – jobs and export potential.

In fact, health IT jobs have become increasingly important to support healthcare transformation in the U.S.

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects the need for thousands of new health IT jobs over the next decade—current BLS data projects that employment in health IT occupations will increase by 21% through 2020.
  • The 2014 HIMSS Workforce Survey indicated a strong future for health IT jobs as three-quarters of healthcare provider organization respondents expected to hire more IT staff and 70% plan to use outsourced services in the next year .

Workforce development programs, such as the Bellevue College/HIMSS initiative for our nation’s veterans (funded by a generous grant by the U.S. Department of Labor, Education and Training Administration, Grant #TC-23745-12-60-A-53), need visibility and support from federal and state efforts on job creation and improvement.

It’s tradition.  Every U. S. President since Jimmy Carter has taken the podium at the City Club of Cleveland to speak. And today, President Barack Obama presented his thoughts on middle class economics.

Policymakers need to work with non-profit associations and the business community to launch and support internships, apprenticeships, and fellowships that give students and transitioning professionals’ real-world experience.

At HIMSS, we are working with our members and organizations across the healthcare community to guide and assist candidates to make a smooth transition to health IT.  The HIMSS workforce development initiatives, most notably our Emerging Professionals program and our Veterans Career Services Center, are designed to engage new entrants into the health IT community.  Education throughout the year and at HIMSS15 can truly help these professionals make the transition to health IT


The President talked about challenging the country to be innovative.  Innovation is essential to transforming the economy.  Innovation is required to leverage the power of IT to create better, safer and more efficient care delivery. Our podcast series – Innovation That Sticks – offers many examples of how people are using IT, in innovative ways within a health environment to achieve the Triple Aim.  And, we freely offer our Innovation Pathways framework, so organizations can create customized innovation models.

The Department of Commerce’s National Export Initiative is leveraging the buying power of 95% of the world’s population to support US company expansion beyond our borders.  Healthcare organizations and companies can apply the lessons and best practices learned from implementing EHRs and enhancing health IT interoperability to developing nations, where they can make a huge difference in improving healthcare delivery.

The HIMSS Innovation Center is a permanent demonstration and testing site open year round to show how interoperable technologies improve the quality and efficiency of care for patients and communities.



The Innovation Center strives to bring collaborative organizations together to solve real-world clinical workflow and financial transactional challenges and enable solutions providers to prove systemic compliance with health information exchange, interoperability with other solutions, and regulatory compliance.

So yes, a prosperous economy and job creation can start with health IT.


We are truly delighted to have President Obama visit the Global Center for Health Innovation, and stand ready to work with all stakeholders to make sure health IT truly meets the challenges in supporting the U.S. economy.





About Carla M Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS

Carla M Smith, MA, CNM, FHIMSS , is HIMSS Executive Vice President.
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