In the United States, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) was created by Congress as part of the Affordable Care Act (2010) to fund comparative effectiveness research. This type of research compares different treatments to determine which treatments work best for which patients. To conduct such research on a national scale, there needs to be a way to combine the data from hospitals, clinics and patients around the country. To facilitate this type of data aggregation, PCORI recently launched a clinical research network called PCORnet. This network is described in the current issue of JAMIA by the authors Fleurence, Curtis, Califf, Platt, Selby and Brown. Read further >
Vice President, Medical Informatics
Wolters Kluwer Health
As the VP of Medical Informatics for Wolters Kluwer Health – Clinical Solutions, Howard focuses on building products that answer clinical questions and integrate knowledge with electronic medical record (EMR) and computerized physician order entry (CPOE) systems. He is also actively involved in standards development as a co-chair of the Health Level Seven (HL7) Clinical Decision Support (CDS) Technical Committee, which develops CDS standards in areas such as Infobuttons, order sets, and decision support services.
Prior to joining Wolters Kluwer Health in 2003, he was CEO of Skolar, Inc., an online provider of clinical information and "in context" continuing medical education (CME) for medical professionals.
Howard received his MD degree from the University of Western Ontario and his MS degree in Medical Information Sciences from Stanford University. He is board certified in Family Medicine. As a hobby, he enjoys following the airline industry, especially with regards to the latest schedules, routes, fares and frequent flyer programs.
Posts by Howard Strasberg
A couple of years ago on this blog, I talked about the new frontier of personalized medicine based on each patient’s genomic data. We are getting closer and closer to making this vision a reality. We recently announced some exciting enhancements to our pharmacogenomics content, both in our Lexicomp Online reference database, as well as in our Medi-Span clinical decision support content and software. With these enhancements, clinicians can be alerted when ordering a drug that may be affected by a patient’s genetic variation. Read further >
Machine learning is a hot topic in today’s Big Data world. Computers in many different industries are being asked to analyze the vast amounts of data being collected by our modern technological infrastructure. One of the common problems given to these computers is to see if they can learn how to make a binary prediction from a set of input data. For example, given the details of a person’s credit history, would a bank consider them to be a good credit risk? Another example: given the words in an email message, should the email be sent automatically to the spam folder? In healthcare, an example I mentioned on this blog last year had to do with predicting whether a medication safety alert is relevant given a set of patient contextual variables. Read further >
Drug-drug interactions can lead to adverse drug reactions, which have high costs and may cause significant morbidity and mortality. Detecting drug-drug interactions as early as possible during a patient’s course of treatment may help to prevent some adverse drug reactions from taking place. It’s also important to be able to identify new drug-drug interactions that may result from the use of new drugs on the market. Although electronic health records (EHRs) use structured data in certain places, a large amount of the data in EHRs remains in a free text format. Read further >
Infobuttons are context-sensitive links from electronic health records (EHRs) to knowledge resources. They are designed to make it easier for clinicians to find answers to their questions in a timely fashion. I have written about Infobuttons at length on this blog, but having just returned from the January 2014 HL7 working group meeting, I thought it would be worthwhile to post an update on the most recent changes to this standard. Read further >
Since 1934, the American Board of Medical Specialties (formerly the Advisory Board for Medical Specialties) has been recognizing medical specialty boards in various disciplines, such as Internal Medicine, Surgery, and Radiology. The complete list of the 24 approved ABMS member boards can be found here. In addition, some member boards offer subspecialty certificates in various areas, such as Geriatric Medicine as a subspecialty of Internal Medicine, or Neuroradiology as a subspecialty of Radiology. The complete list of subspecialty certificates can be found here. Read further >
The AMIA 2013 conference just wrapped up in Washington, DC. I had the honor of giving two talks on topics I often discuss on this blog – medication safety screening and clinical decision support (CDS) standards. Read further >
One of the most important benefits of implementing an electronic medical record (EMR) system is the ability to provide clinical decision support (CDS). CDS can come in many forms, such as order sets, alerts, reminders, documentation templates, relevant data display, and filtered reference information. Evaluation of CDS systems is required to make sure that they are providing the right advice. While the impact of CDS systems is often evaluated after the system has been in use for a period of time, evaluations should also occur before these systems have been deployed – i.e. as a condition of deployment. Read further >