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Health information technology manager

Julie Gabriele, ambulatory applications manager in the management of information systems department at Greater Baltimore Medical Center, has been working in health information technology for 20 years.

What does your job entail?

I work closely with over 200 physicians and their staff in 40 practices to improve the safety and the quality of care that we provide our patients by leveraging the use of health information technology (HIT). This assists our physicians and our Care Teams to achieve the best possible health outcomes for our patients. To do this, I lead an applications team that implements and supports a secured electronic medical record and a patient portal (myGBMC).

We securely maintain and manage patient health information. By leveraging data, our physicians can proactively manage their patients' health, as well as improving the health of targeted populations via our Accountable Care Organization. In addition, I keep our team focused by staying on top of all government regulatory requirements.

On any given day, I can find myself with a group of physicians discussing needs assessments and technical issues, managing the quality of work and timeline deliverables from large outside application vendors and meeting with my team both individually and as a whole to mentor and guide them through their daily challenges.

I also have additional responsibilities which allows me to work closely with our physicians to improve practice workflow, remove unnecessary waste and focus on maximizing patient value-added activities by way of using proven LEAN methodologies.

What kind of schooling or training did you go through?

I have an MBA from Loyola University in Maryland, with an emphasis in management information and decision support systems. My MBA has been invaluable to me in many ways. Most technical directors opt for a master's in IT. I found, however, that it is critical to understand "the business" first, before you can successfully develop IT strategies that will position your business to remain highly competitive.

What inspired you to this career?

My parents. My father was an engineer with the Department of Defense prior to his retirement and always encouraged me to pursue a career in technology. My mother spent her entire career in health care as a librarian. I've been very lucky to have such a strong support system in them.

What do you like best about your job?

GBMC fosters innovation. In my role, I have been given a great deal of flexibility to try new ways of solving business challenges with technology. Case in point, we were the first health care organization in Maryland to implement a patient portal, myGBMC, which enables our patients to log into a secured environment to retrieve patient visit summaries, lab results, appointment requests, medication renewals etc. Now, we are looking to further engage our patients with the use of mobile technology. Telemedicine is just around the corner. Moreover, we recently worked with the Virginia Mason Institute to create the "Practice of the Future." It is entirely innovative and ground-breaking.

It is incredibly satisfying to know that when I come to work each day, I am participating in the transformation that is now taking place in our country.

What are the challenges?

Constant change. It is incredibly challenging to stay abreast of all the changes in the health care industry related to HIT from a regulatory perspective. Technology is changing at such a rapid rate, and it is difficult to maintain a long-term IT strategy. However, with these challenges comes great opportunity and a lot of fun innovating along the way.


The average salary (nationwide) is between $86,000 and $140,000.

Barbara Haddock Taylor, Baltimore Sun
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