Information Systems’ mission is to provide an integrated delivery system solution for information. Whenever possible, Information Systems will strive to seamlessly integrate information systems functionality and data accessibility to all users of Partners systems.
Functional Areas of Information Systems
Here are some of the functions within the Information Systems Department, to give you an idea of the range of work that we do in support of our integrated health network:
- Applications Development
- Clinical Informatics Research & Development
- Clinical and Quality Analysis
- Clinical Systems
- Connected Health
- Finance & Administration
- Health Information Services
- IS Administration
- Medical Imaging (IS Radiology)
- Integrated Network Communication
- Support Services
- Continuing Care Services
- Research Computing
- Technology Planning
- Technical Services and Operations
Clinical Informatics Research & Development
CIRD is responsible for leading the development of clinical systems strategy for Partners Healthcare, conducting applied informatics research and development, and key design issues in Partners enterprise clinical systems (especially those involving complex clinical workflows, usability, controlled terminology, knowledge management, and clinical decision support).
Clinical and Quality Analysis
The Clinical and Quality Analysis, Information Systems (CQA) group in Partners IS evaluates information systems across the Partners' network. The CQA team does both analyses intended to improve operations internally, as well as research analyses intended for publication. These analyses focus on the benefits, costs, and net impact of clinical information systems. CQA collaborates closely with many of the IS departments as well as with clinicians Partners-wide, health service professionals, informaticians, and researchers at Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health.
Clinical Systems is responsible for the planning, implementation, and support of clinical applications for Partners HealthCare. This division supports both entity level and enterprise-wide clinical systems.
Connected Health is responsible for the establishment of Telemedicine and Connected Health facilities and applications that will improve the cost effectiveness, as well as improve the quality and convenience, of care to Partners' patients. The Center is also chartered to establish sources of revenue for Partners through the expansion of Connected Health services to new patient populations. Connected Health is responsible for programs encompassing activities in remote education, clinical research, and remote consultation domestically and internationally.
Finance & Administration
Finance & Administration is responsible for the planning and implementation of Financial and Administrative systems to support the operations of PHS Finance, Human Resources, Materials Management, Development, and Real Estate.
Health Information Services
Health Information Services is responsible for the development and management of health information standards and health information department operations for Partners and the urban sites. Central services include the oversight of coding, transcription services, electronic record management and confidentiality policies and procedures.
IS Administration is responsible for Finance Management, Human Resources, Project Management, Contract Management and Facilities Management for the Information Systems Department. IS Administration’s scope of responsibility spans market research and moves, payroll processing and workforce development, intellectual property and the IS intranet, solutions delivery and ConnectedWork.
Medical Imaging (IS Radiology)
Medical Imaging directs the coordination and delivery of radiology systems across Partners entities, including core radiology systems support and new initiatives such as the Picture Archiving and Communication System. Additional areas of responsibility are Radiology Decision Support and Radiology Order Entry (MGH), as well as newer and investigatory imaging informatics areas. An example of a newer area is integration work with the Research Patient Data Registry.
Integrated Network Communication
Integrated Network Communication is responsible for the development, implementation, and provision of technical services and operations to support the voice and data network needs of the overall Partners HealthCare System. Telecommunications includes the management of voice technology, related systems, large scale project/call center/vendor management, future technology designs, and related business operations such as revenue generation, and billing and paging. Network Engineering includes support of wired and wireless network, network security, related systems, large scale project management, vendor management, and future technology designs.
Support Services is responsible for directing all support services activities and functions. This includes the centralized help desk, email and accounts administration, remote access, procurement, desktop support, IT training, configuration management, asset management, and problem management. IT involves a varied mix of technology, direct user support services, and project management.
Continuing Care Services
Continuing Care Services provides a variety of non-acute services in home care, rehabilitation and long-term care settings. It enables Partners to provide the patient with the entire spectrum of care. The continuing care group is comprised of the following facilities: Partners HealthCare at Home, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Boston, Spaulding Hospital for Continuing Medical Care Cambridge, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Cape Cod, and Long Term Care Facilities. The continuing care group also develops and supports the Partners transition of care application 4Next.
Research Computing is responsible for the IT strategic planning, support and coordination of the Partners Research Enterprise including basic and Clinical Research. This includes the support of non-standard infrastructure, development and support of research administrative systems, development and support of Genetic IT infrastructure (including the Personalized Medicine IT Roadmap), the development and support of the Research Patient Data Registry, i2b2 Clinical Research Chart, and Pharmacovigilence discovery.
Technical Services and Operations
Technical Services and Operations is responsible for all operations systems and support for Partners HealthCare and its organizational entities. This includes the back office server team, operating systems support, database administration, data center operations, disaster recovery, and information security.
A Look at the Career Growth Initiative for Partners IS Employees
The Career Growth Initiative (CGI) was launched in 2005 in recognition of the need to enhance professional development within Partners Information Systems (IS). Professional development is more than just taking a training class or going to an educational conference (the traditional definition). It’s also helping employees manage their own careers and taking the time out of our busy workdays to put a focus on employee goals.
Some employees may be looking for guidance about what they really want to do with their professional lives. Others want to work toward a job with more responsibility and greater challenges. Some are content with their skills but would like to apply them in another area of IS. Still others want to stay in their current positions but are looking to learn new technical or professional skills or gain further industry or organizational knowledge.
The CGI effort employs tools to help with all of these scenarios, through “Career Conversations” – discussions between employees and their mangers about the future. The goal is to ensure that every employee has a personally meaningful, documented career plan.
To that end, tools, templates, and training opportunities were developed to aid discussions between managers and employees (called “career owners”) about career growth plans. These include the Career Self Evaluation and the Career Action Plan.
The self evaluation tool helps an employee prepare for a Career Conversation by asking a variety of questions about job satisfaction, motivation, and career aspirations. The career action plan itself is a written document containing the actions that the employee and his or her manager have identified as needed to support the employee’s expressed career goals.
Career Conversations are required annually for employees. The IS organization has also instituted a policy that provides up to 40 hrs per year of “discretionary, non-project required” professional development. Together, these steps ensure that career-minded employees have time allocated to supporting their career development goals.
Work at Partners
There are career opportunities in finance, I.T., administration, research and clinical support areas at Partners HealthCare and across the Partners system.