5 "Crazy Ones' Reshaping Health IT

Staff Writers | Healthcare IT News | August 12, 2014

We spotlight five innovators who are daring to do things a little different

...With a nod to Apple and its famous 1997 TV spot, which highlighted doers and dreamers in all fields of endeavor who colored outside the lines, we put the spotlight on just five of the many 'crazy ones' who are helping transform health IT in new and unique ways.

There was no Epic or Allscripts. It was long before the days of meaningful use. In fact, there was no full electronic medical record system in the nation to speak of. Clement McDonald, MD, recalls those days with ease.

It all took place beginning in 1972 at the Regenstrief Institute when McDonald and a few colleagues took it upon themselves to develop what was widely considered to be the first EMR system in the country.  What's more, no one had asked him to build it. "We were sort of mavericks all along," he says, chuckling. McDonald had been planning on building a system since the mid 1960s, a plan stemming from what he observed while interning at Boston City Hospital, where hospital admissions were an ordeal in their own right....