Home Healthcare and Hospice Information Technology (H3IT) Conference

[2016-11-02 Wed]

H3IT 2016 is organizing its third annual international conference for all stakeholders interested in leveraging health information technology (HIT) in home and hospice care. The event will be held in Chicago, IL on Nov 11, 2016 and will be chaired by Dr.Gunes Koru.

H3IT conference provides a forum where evidence-based research findings, information, and tools are communicated to achieve better health outcomes, quality of care, utilization of and access to care, and reduced care costs in home and hospice care settings. It's interdisciplinary and applied elements make the conference highly relevant to the patients, providers, payers, vendors, and governments.

We request you and your colleagues to attend H3IT 2016. we look forward to seeing you in Chicago!


Presentation in MNCHA 2016 Annual Conference

[2016-09-22 Thu]

Saiadithya Cumbulam, Setareh Salimi, and Dr. Gunes Koru presented a poster titled "A Methodology for Determining Financial Feasibility of Health IT Solutions in the Future of Home Care" and also delivered an interactive presentation on "Automated Fraud Detection for Medicaid-Reimbursed Home Care Claims".



SINI 2016 Nursing Informatics Research Poster Award Winner

[2016-06-20 Mon]

Dr. Gunes Koru and Dr. Dari AlHuwail won the 2016 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics Research Poster Award for their poster presented titled "Identifying Home Care Clinicians Information Needs to Achieve Better Care Coordination in Fall Risk Management".



Started Research Projects at Health IT Lab

[2016-06-01 Wed]


Dr. Koru has received funding and started research projects at the Health IT Lab at UMBC. The research projects focus on (i) supporting the enhancement and evolution of data governance infrastructures used in health services for achieving the triple aims, better care, reduced costs, and better health , through leveraging data analytics, (ii) establishing continuous quality improvement practices for software and healthcare-administration systems, (iii) and on investigating the challenges and opportunities to improve the in-home healthcare support and administration systems and preventing waste, fraud, and abuse.

The three-year funding from the State of Maryland has been supporting seven students as full-time graduate research assistants in the Health IT Lab at UMBC since June 1, 2016. The students are (from left to right in the picture) Ms. Ashkezari, Ms. Kakalasaria, Mr. Hamid, Ms. Zhang, Mr. Patil, Ms. Rao, and Mr. Thangaraj.


Home Health IT Summit 2016

[2016-04-22 Fri]

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 – 11 AM – 4 PM
Empowering Engagement in the Digital Age
Organized by the Health IT Lab at UMBC
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC)
Information Technology and Engineering Building (ITE) Room 456
1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore, MD 21250

Home care clinicians, executives, administrators, and information technology professionals are invited to participate in meaningful discussions about how health information technology can be used to achieve better levels of engagement with various stakeholders in the delivery of patient-centered home care.

No registration fee is required to attend this event

Space is limited. RSVP today via email! (

Dari Alhuwail wins the Audience Choice Award in IS poster competition

[2016-04-20 Wed]


The Information Systems Department at UMBC has awarded Dari Alhuwail, a PhD graduate of the Health IT Lab, with the "Audience Choice Award" for his poster entitled "A Qualitative Case Study Investigating How Health IT Solutions Responds to Home Care Clinicans' Information Needs for Fall-Risk Management". The Annual IS Student Research Poster Contest encourages students to submit posters based on their research.

Nursing Informatics Research Award

[2016-04-11 Mon]

The 2016 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics (SINI) has selected Dari Alhuwail and Dr. Koru's abstract titled "Identifying Home Care Clinicians' Information Needs to Achieve Better Care Coordination in Fall Risk Management" for a podium presentation. This abstract has also been selected to receive the Nursing Informatics Research Award.

SINI is a highly established nursing informatics conference with an extensive history that is well known globally. The conference will be held in Baltimore, MD from July 20 to July 22nd. Further conference details can be found at Join us on Wednesday, July 20th from 3:15-4:15 PM for our presentation.

Outstanding Nursing Informatics Practice Poster Award

[2016-04-11 Mon]

The 2016 Summer Institute in Nursing Informatics (SINI) has selected Uche Uchidiuno, Gunes Koru ,Pooja Parameshwarappa, and Dari Alhuwail's abstract titled "Leveraging Data Analytics to Investigate the Relationship Between Patient Demographic and Falls in Home Care" for a poster presentation on July 21, 2016. This abstract will receive the Outstanding Poster Award in the category of Nursing Informatics Practice.

SINI is a highly established nursing informatics conference with an extensive history that is well known globally. The conference will be held in Baltimore, MD from July 20 to July 22nd. Further conference details can be found at Join us on Thursday, July 21st from 8-8:45 AM as well as 4:15-5:00 PM for this poster presentation.

Congratulations to Dr. Alhuwail!

[2016-04-04 Mon]

Figure 5: Dr. Alhuwail and his Dissertation Committee Members: From left to right, Drs. Anthony F. Norcio, Mary Stuart, Güneş Koru, Dari Alhuwail, Dongsong Zhang, and Lina Zhou

It is a great pleasure to announce that Dari Alhuwail has successfully defended his PhD thesis. Dr. Alhuwail studied how home health agencies can use health IT to achieve their performance improvement targets. Starting from Fall 2016 semester, he will be conducting research and teaching at the Kuwait University as an assistant professor. Congratulations to Dr. Alhuwail and his family for the very successful completion of this important milestone in his scientific career!


Journal paper accepted by Home Health Care Management and Practice

[2016-03-28 Mon]


Mr. Alhuwail and I had another paper accepted by the Home Health Care Management and Practice journal. This paper is from Mr. Alhuwail's doctoral study leading up to the dissertation defense on April 4th. The paper reports what was learned about the clinicians' perspectives about using various health IT solutions for fall-risk management in home care. As the elderly population and home care utilization increases, the use of health IT by home care clinicians' becomes critical.


Journal paper accepted: Information Needs for Managing Fall Risks

[2016-01-29 Fri]


We are pleased to announce that our paper about identifying home care clinicians' information needs for fall-risk management was accepted by the Applied Clinical Informatics Journal. This journal is an official journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. The authors are Alhuwail and Koru. Congratulations to Mr. Alhuwail on his first third journal paper and first first-author journal paper. He will be defending his PhD dissertation on April 4, 2016.



Journal paper published: Home Care Performance Improvement

[2015-12-17 Thu]


A recent paper about the key performance improvement domains in home care has just been published by SAGE Open Medicine. The paper is available from here. The work is the result of a collaboration between UMBC and VNA Health Group. The authors are Koru, AlHuwail, and Rosati. We do hope that the findings will help the US home health agencies in their quality assessment and performance improvement programs.


Dr. O'Kane's talk on m-Health adoption

[2015-12-01 Tue]

This health-IT related talk should also be of broad interest:

Adopting and Use of Mobile Health and Wellbeing Technologies in the Wild

Dr. Aisling O’Kane
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
University College London Interaction Centre
University College London

Monday December 7th 3:00PM Room: ITE 459

Adults with Type 1 Diabetes have choices regarding the technology they use to self-manage their chronic condition. They can use glucose meters, insulin pumps, smartphone apps, and other technologies to support their everyday care. However, little is known about how their everyday lives might influence what they adopt or how they use these mobile medical technologies. A multi-method study was conducted to examine contextual factors that influence their technology use. While individual differences play a large role in everyday use, social, physical and cultural factors were also found to influence use. This talk outlines these findings, and also shows how situated qualitative methods were used beyond mobile medical devices to examine personal fitness technologies “in the wild” and concludes on how individual differences are driving DIY health and wellbeing practices.

Aisling Ann O’Kane is an EPSRC Doctoral Prize Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University College London Interaction Centre and a human factors engineer originally from Toronto, Canada. She’s interested in the impact of situated user experience on the “in the wild” adoption, use, misuse, and DIY practices surrounding personal medical, health and wellbeing technologies, a space between human factors engineering and human-computer interaction. She has worked in industry and in various labs in Europe and North America, including Georgia Tech as a Ubicomp visiting researcher, Mobile Life as a masters student in Stockholm, and Microsoft Research Cambridge as an intern.


Journal paper accepted by JAMDA

[2015-10-09 Fri]


We are happy to announce that one of our recent papers about leveraging health IT in home care was accepted by the Journal of the American Medical Directors Association. Note that the impact factor of this prestigious journal is 4.939. The authors are in the following order Koru, AlHuwail, Topaz, Norcio, and Mills. The work was funded by the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality, and the paper is a result of the collaboration among UMBC, Harvard Medical School, and the School of Nursing at the University of Maryland.

Presentation and Panel Participation in WHITE 2015 Workshop

[2015-10-09 Fri]

Dr. Koru presented our research in advanced data analytics at the WHITE 2015 workshop and participated in a panel discussion. The authors of the study include our PhD student Pooja Parameshwarappa and Dari Alhuwail.

IBM visits UMBC and our PhD student Dari Alhuwail presents Home Care Data Analytics

[2015-10-06 Tue]

Dr. John E. Kelly III, IBM's Senior Vice President of research and solutions, visited UMBC on Tuesday, October 6. There was a poster session on the third floor of the ITE building. Dari Alhuwail, a PhD candidate, from the health IT lab presented our research on predicting quality in home health care. We look forward to an increasing partnership and collaboration between UMBC and IBM.

Our group presents Home Care Quality Poster at the AHRQ Conference

[2015-10-05 Mon]

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality had a really wonderful meeting where many grantees reported their research results. This annual meeting was discontinued in 2013 and 2014 and it is great to see that it is back. Right after the AHRQ conference, there was a PCORI meeting and a joint plenary session. It seems like PCORI and AHRQ collaboration will be really beneficial for seeing the dissemination and implementation of the results from the PCORI funded projects in the first half of 2010s. We presented a poster about performance improvement in home care which received quite a lot of interest. Already looking forward to AHRQ 2016!


Data Analytics for Improving the Utilization Outcomes for Home Health Agencies

[2015-10-01 Thu]

Location Health IT Lab, ITE 446
Speaker Dr. Koru
Date Oct 2, 2015
Time 10:15 am

Come and learn about our recent research on how to utilize disparate large data sources to draw conclusions about improving home care outcomes. Everyone is welcome.


Performance Improvement Domains for Home Health Agencies

[2015-09-25 Fri]

Location Health IT Lab, ITE 446
Speaker Dr. Koru
Date Sep 25, 2015
Time 10:15 am

Today, in our lab meeting, we talk about our recent findings about the areas for performance improvement for Home Health Agencies in the US. All are welcome to attend.

Health IT lab presents research findings at MNCHA 2015

[2015-09-17 Thu]


MNCHA 2015 conference took place today at the PIER 5 hotel in Baltimore MD. This hotel is right at the Inner Harbor in Baltimore with beautiful views. Mr. AlHuwail and Dr. Koru attended the conference. Health IT Lab at UMBC had a display table. Dr. Koru presented the research findings about data analytics for quality improvement in home care. More pictures to follow.

H3IT Conference Announces its Program; Our submissions got accepted!

[2015-09-10 Thu]

H3IT 2015 conference which will be held at the Vanderbilt University on Oct 27, 2015 announced its program. It seems like many opinion leaders in health IT adoption in home care and hospice are coming together. We look forward to the opportunity for the exchange of ideas. And, of course, we are pleased that two of our submissions were accepted for a podium presentation, and one for a poster presentation.

Our WHITE workshop submission gets accepted!

[2015-09-02 Wed]

We are pleased to hear that a paper we submitted to WHITE 2015, The 6th Annual Workshop on Health IT and Economics (WHITE 2015), was accepted. The authors are are Koru, Parameshwarappa, and AlHuwail. The paper talks about leveraging data analytics to improve home care processes and utilization outcomes. Happy to hear the news and we look forward to the conference. We also express our gratitude to WHITE 2015 leadership. They built a strong scientific community since their first meeting in 2010.

MITRE visits UMBC: Health IT Lab presented two posters

[2015-09-02 Wed]

It was a pleasure seeing the MITRE leadership on campus. Our lab presented two posters during this visit: One analyzing data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid to predict utilization outcomes; and the other about achieving cybersecurity in multi-institutional healthcare environments. We look forward to seeing tighter cooperation and collaboration between our two institutions.


Dr. Koru receives leadership award in Nursing Informatics

[2015-07-21 Tue]

SINI 2015 conference presented a leadership award to Dr. Gunes Koru for his contributions to the nursing informatics education and research.

We receive outstanding research award in Nursing Informatics Conference

[2015-07-20 Mon]

SINI 2015 conference presented the authors, Koru, AlHuwail, and Aifan an outstanding research award for their poster at the conference.


White House Announces the Precision Medicine Initiative

[2015-01-26 Mon]

Figure 15: Precision Medicine Announcement at Harvard

This is really exciting news! We all noticed the phrase "Precision Medicine" used in the President's State of the Union address. Today, Obama was introduced by a student from the Harvard University to announce the initiative (Photo: Reuters). You can find more information here:

A Coalition of Professional Organizations Write a Letter to Express Concerns about the Certification Methods for Electronic Health Records

[2015-01-26 Mon]

Figure 16: Letter to ONC

In this unusually direct letter addressed to Karen B. DeSalvo of the Office of the National Coordinatior for Health IT, a coalition of professional organizations express an urgent need to change the current mechanisms in place for the certification of the Electronic Health Records (EHR).



H3IT 2014 - Home Healthcare and Hospice Information Technology Conference Concludes with Great Success

[2014-11-17 Mon]

Figure 17: H3IT Community

H3IT conference brought the thought leaders of health IT in home healthcare and hospice together in Washington, D.C. on November 15, 2014. The photos from the Home Healthcare and Hospice Information Technology conference can be found here.


Dr. Bing Liu - Distinguished Lecture Series

[2014-10-13 Mon]

Figure 18: Dr. Bing Liu visits UMBC

Speaker: Dr. Bing Liu
Professor of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC)
Date/Time: October 20, 2014 12:00PM-1:00PM
Location: ITE 459

Abstract: Opinion mining (OM) or sentiment analysis is the computational study of people's opinions, sentiments, and emotions expressed in written language. It is one of the most active research areas in natural language processing (NLP) and text mining due to almost unlimited applications and numerous research challenges. OM can be seen as a semantic analysis problem in NLP, but it is also highly targeted and bounded because an OM system does not need to fully “understand” each sentence or document. It only needs to comprehend some aspects of it, e.g., positive/negative opinions and emotions. Due to this targeted and bounded nature of OM, it allows us to perform deeper text analyses to gain better insights into NLP than in the general setting because the complexity of the general setting of NLP is too overwhelming. Thus, although general natural language understanding is still far from us, we may be able to solve the OM problem satisfactorily. OM also offers an excellent platform for NLP and text mining researchers to potentially make major breakthroughs on many fronts of text analysis. In this talk, I will first introduce OM and then discuss a recent study that uses OM as a platform to explore an important idea of intelligent top discovery involving continuous machine learning and big data.

Biographical Information: Bing Liu is a professor of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). He received his PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Edinburgh. Before joining UIC, he was a faculty member at the National University of Singapore. His current research interests include sentiment analysis and opinion mining, data mining, machine learning, and natural language processing (NLP). He has published extensively in top conferences and journals. He is also the author of two books: “Sentiment Analysis and Opinion Mining” (Morgan and Claypool) and “Web Data Mining: Exploring Hyperlinks, Contents and Usage Data” (Springer). In addition to research impacts, his work has also made important social impacts. Some of his work has been widely reported in the press, including a front-page article in The New York Times. On professional services, Liu has served as program chairs of many leading data mining related conferences of ACM, IEEE, and SIAM: KDD, ICDM, CIKM, WSDM, SDM, and PAKDD, as associate editors of several leading data mining journals, e.g., TKDE, TWEB, DMKD, and as area/track chairs or senior technical committee members of numerous NLP, data mining, and Web technology conferences. He currently also serves as the Chair of ACM SIGKDD, and is an IEEE Fellow.

Interested in learning more about biomedical informatics and biomedical computing? Join us this Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 11:30 AM in ITE 406.Come learn about research in the biomedical informatics and biomedical computing areas and interact with other faculty and students.

This meeting is open to all students. Masters and PhD students are encouraged to attend.

What: Biomedical informatics and biomedical computing When: Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 at 11:30 AM Where: ITE

Data Science Platforms: Integral to Help Drive Molecularly Targeted Therapy Development and Personalized Medicine Research

[2014-10-10 Fri]

Figure 19: Dr. Subha Madhavan visits UMBC

Speaker: Dr. Subha Madhavan,
Director, Biomedical Informatics,
Innovation Center for Biomedical Informatics,
Georgetown University, Washington D.C
Date/Time: October 17, 2014 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
Location: ITE 459

Abstract: The advent of the microarray technology in 2000 has paved the way for advanced translational research methods that use molecular markers such as microRNA, proteins, metabolites and copy number data. Our flagship web platform, the Georgetown Database of Cancer (G-DOC), was deployed in April 2011 to enable the practice of an integrative translational and systems-based approach to research and medicine in cancer. G-DOC is a feature-rich shareable research infrastructure that allows physician scientists and translational researchers to mine and analyze a variety of “omics” data in the context of consistently defined clinical outcomes data for cancer patients.

The popularity of next generation sequencing (NGS) grew exponentially in 2007 when a faster, more accurate and affordable sequencing throughput became a reality. Since then, the size and complexity of genomic data has increased many fold, making its analysis, management and integration increasingly challenging. Scientists today are using not only a combination of clinical, NGS and omics data for analysis, but also medical and pathology images for validation of analysis results. To drive hypothesis generation and validation of molecular markers for biologists and researchers, it would be convenient to have a “one–stop” system that can handle all these data types, including NGS and medical images, in one location. For this purpose, we expanded the G-DOC system to support NGS and medical images. Moreover, the success of G-DOC in the cancer realm has helped us realize the importance of such systems in the non-cancer world for complex diseases such as Alzheimer's, Duchene Muscular dystrophy, etc.

With the goal of improving overall health outcomes through advanced genomics research, we present G-DOC Plus, our web platform that enables the integrative analysis of multiple data types to understand mechanisms of cancer and non-cancer diseases for precision medicine. G-DOC Plus allows researchers to explore data one sample at a time, as a sub-cohort of samples; or as a population as a whole, providing the user with a comprehensive view of the data.

Biographical Information: Dr. Madhavan is the Director of Biomedical Informatics and Center Director. She leads several informatics efforts including the Georgetown Database of Cancer a tool for both researchers and clinicians to realize the goals of personalized medicine at GU, and the NIH caBIG In Silico Research Center for Excellence. She also directs the Informatics cores for NIH funded translational efforts. She is the PI on the Breast and Colon Cancer Family Registries data center that coordinates public health and epidemiology data across 12 sites in the US, Australia, and Canada. More recently, she has partnered with the FDA on the Center for Excellence in Regulatory Science program to develop evidence bases for pharmacogenomics and vaccine adverse event detection. She is also involved in a whole genome data analysis project with the Inova Translational Medicine Institute. Prior to joining Georgetown, Dr. Madhavan served as the Associate Director of Product and Program Management in the Life sciences informatics area at NCI's Center for Biomedical Informatics and Information technology. Her work at NCI involved bridging the gap between bench and bedside by enabling researchers and physician scientists to use cutting edge biomedical informatics solutions to identify better therapies for cancer. At NCI she led a group of scientists, physicians and software engineers in building REMBRANDT (REpository for Molecular BRAin Neoplasia DaTa) – a database that hosts and interconnects clinical data points with various genomics datasets from large brain tumor clinical trials. This effort won the Service to America Award. While at NCI she also established the data coordination center for The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), which managed and analyzed high dimensional genomic data of approximately 100 TB over a period of 3 years. At Georgetown, she leads various informatics efforts including the caBIG In Silico Research Center for Excellence, and the Georgetown Database of Cancer. She also directs the Informatics cores for NIH funded translational efforts such as the Center for Cancer Systems Biology at Georgetown; and the Clinical Translational Science Award at Georgetown along with Howard University, the Washington Veteran's Affairs Medical Center, and MedStar Health Research Institute. She is the PI on the Breast and Colon Cancer Family Registries data center that coordinates public health and epidemiology data across 12 sites in the US, Australia, and Canada. More recently, she has partnered with the FDA on the Center for Excellence in Regulatory Science program to develop evidence bases for pharmacogenomics and vaccine adverse event detection. She is also involved in a whole genome data analysis project with the Inova Translational Medicine Institute. Dr. Madhavan has a master of science in Information Technology from University of Maryland and a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology and Biological Sciences from the Uniformed Services University for the Health Sciences (Indo-US Collaborative program). – See:

Dr. Koru teaching IS 461/661 Health Informatics - II in Spring 2015

[2014-10-01 Wed]

Figure 20: Shortliffe-Cimino Textbook

Second in the series, IS 461/661 focuses on applications

IS 461/661 Health Informatics - II will introduce the senior and graduate students to the applications of biomedical informatics. The students will learn about electronic health records, health information infrastructure, management of information in healthcare organizations, patient centered care systems, public health informatics, and telehealth along with other important application areas. The information provided in this course is crucial for students who may want to participate in the health IT organizations at any capacity. The students will also gain an opportunity to gain more in-depth knowledge in a topic they choose to further explore within a team formation.

The contents of the course are as follows (the last two depending on time):

  • Electronic Health Record Systems
  • Health Information Infrastructure
  • Management of Information in Health Care Organizations
  • Patient-Centered Care Systems
  • Public Health Informatics
  • Consumer Health Informatics and Personal Health Records
  • Telehealth
  • Patient Monitoring Systems
  • Imaging Systems in Radiology
  • Information Retrieval and Digital Libraries
  • Clinical Decision-Support Systems
  • Computers in Health Care Education
  • Bioinformatics
  • Translational Bioinformatics
  • Clinical Research Informatics
  • Health Information Technology Policy
  • The Future of Informatics in Biomedicine


Health IT Lab presented at the MNCHA 2014 annual meeting

[2014-09-18 Thu]

Figure 21: Conversations at the Health IT Lab's display table in MNCHA 2014

Dari AlHuwail and Dr. Gunes Koru presented a poster and delivered an interactive presentation on findings from a recent qualitative research study on the Quality of Care in Home Health context.

Mr. Azari passes PhD proposal exam

[2014-09-13 Sat]

Figure 22: Dr. Koru and Mr. Azari talking about research

Congratulations to Ali! He passed his PhD proposal exam and he is now a PhD Candidate.

Dari AlHuwail passes PhD proposal exam

[2014-09-09 Tue]

Figure 23: Mr. Alhuwail in his proposal defense

Congratulations to Dari! He passed his PhD proposal exam in the area of Health Informatics and is now a PhD Candidate


Designing for Understanding: Helping Older Adults Understand Over-the-Counter Medication Information

[2014-07-03 Thu]

Figure 24: Aquesha Martin, now a postdoc at UMBC

Speaker: Aqueasha Marie Martin, School of Computing, Clemson University

Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 11:00 am

Hosted by Amy Hurst

Location: ITE 404, Department of Information Systems, UMBC

Abstract: Each year, thousands die or are injured due to adverse drug events due to medication. Technology such as health records and other consumer-based health applications have been shown to be beneficial for helping individuals manage their health. Despite this growing body of work, little to no research has been conducted to gauge the possible effectiveness of technology created through a user-centered process to assist consumers in understanding over-the-counter medication information.

In this talk, I will discuss research that explores the implications for the design of interactive technology to help older adults understand the possible risk of adverse drug events resulting from taking over-the-counter (OTC) medications. I will briefly discuss three studies that are part of an Exploratory Mixed-Methods Study that was designed to identify current practices and challenges, identify opportunities for technology integration, and examine usable and effective ways to present over-the-counter medication information to older adults.

Bio: Aqueasha Marie Martin is currently a Ph.D. Candidate in the School of Computing at Clemson University. She is working towards a Ph.D. in Computer Science with a specialization in Human-Computer Interaction. She is a member of the Human-Centered Computing Lab under the direction of Dr. Juan E. Gilbert. She received a B.S. in Computer Science with a minor in Mathematics in 2005 from Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, MS. She received an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Alabama, Birmingham in Birmingham, AL in 2007. In addition, she completed one year of graduate study toward Ph.D. in Computer Science at Auburn University in Auburn, AL in 2008 before transferring with her advisor to Clemson University to continue her Ph.D. studies.


Dr. Koru teaching IS 460/660 Health Informatics - I in Fall 2014

[2014-05-01 Thu]

Figure 25: Textbook for IS460/660

Dr. Koru will be teaching IS 460/600 Health Informatics - I in Fall 2014. The course is a regular face-to-face on campus course scheduled for Tuesdays 4:30 - 7:00 pm.

As the healthcare industry is going through major transitions and changes, health information systems and technology gain a major renewed focus. While it is widely believed that supporting the complex US health ecosystem will be very difficult without health IT, leveraging the existing and emerging health information technologies remain an important challenge. The initiatives and incentives provided by the US Federal Government in this decade marks only the beginning of a new era.

This course will provide a thorough overview of information systems and their importance in the healthcare industry. A detailed discussion of the primary clinical and administrative uses of health information will be provided along with health information technologies such electronic health records, decision support systems, etc. How can a student benefit from this course? In addition to increasing students' capacity to further explore this topic (by taking Health Informatics - II) and to conduct research, what an earlier student wrote in a thank-you email (below) says a lot about how this course can positively affect students' job opportunities in the future.

Dear Dr. Koru,

I was in your Health Informatics I class during the Fall 2012 semester. I graduated with my Master's in IS back in May, I am currently employed as a web application developer for a company that develops health-IT related systems. I wanted to thank you for all that you taught me during that class. So much of what I learned in your class has helped me in my new job. In addition, I was told during my initial interview that the fact that I had taken a dedicated health IT class was a major factor in deciding to invite me in for an interview, as they considered that a major bonus (the actual job announcement didn't require any health-IT experience, although it was preferred).

I really wanted to take the time to let you know how much your class has positively impacted my life. I honestly believe that having a health IT class on my resume is what turned me from just another one of hundreds of IT graduates looking for work into someone who stood out, at least for this company. And on top of that, I feel that I have been able to adjust to my new job so much faster than if I hadn't taken your class. Otherwise, I would still be struggling to understand most of the jargon in meetings.

Once again, thank you for everything.


Open House for the Health IT masters' degree

[2014-04-23 Wed]

Figure 26: Dr. Koru speaking at the Open House for Health IT

Prospective students for UMBC's MPS in Health IT program attended the Open House on Apr 23, 2014 organized on the South Campus. Dr Koru, interim graduate program director, gave information about the need for health IT professionals in the Baltimore-Washington area and the nature of the health IT program bringing people, organizational, and technology aspects of health IT together to boost professionals' capacity to leverage health IT in the delivery of quality healthcare. Eighty six students registered for the event, and many students asked questions and received answers from Dr. Koru and Renee Eisenhuth, who is the program coordinator, about the admission and graduation requirements.

Translational Bioinformatics Approaches to Evaluate and Implement Genomic Medicine Programs

[2014-04-18 Fri]

Figure 27: Casey is an assistant professor at UMD

Dr. Casey Overby, Assistant Professor Program for Personalized and Genomic Medicine University of Maryland - Baltimore

1:00pm Friday, 25 April 2014, ITE 325b, UMBC

Abstract: There is a growing evidence base to support the use of many genomic applications in healthcare. There are, however, several barriers to healthcare providers making use of genomic data and information on a routine basis. This talk will describe some of the challenges and successes with implementing genomic medicine programs within the Program for Personalized and Genomic Medicine at UMB, introduce one way to conceptualize translational research and translational bioinformatics in this context, describe a proposed model for evaluating and implementing genomic medicine programs, and describe some of the current and planned research in translational bioinformatics

Bio: Casey L. Overby is an Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Program for Personalized and Genomic Medicine and the Center for Health-related Informatics and Bio-Imaging at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. She received her Masters of Biotechnology from the University of Pennsylvania in 2006, her PhD in Biomedical and Health Informatics and a Graduate Certificate in Public Health Genetics from the University of Washington in 2011. In 2013, she completed her post-doctoral training in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University and started her position at University of Maryland, Baltimore.

Health IT Lab Students win the poster competition in the IS Poster Day @ UMBC

[2014-04-11 Fri]

Figure 28: Dari and Ahmad poster competition winners

Our PhD students Ahmad Alaiad and Dari AlHuwail presented their work at the Poster Contest organized by the Information Systems Department at UMBC. The committee selected both students for the #1 place in the poster competition.

Discovery and Innovation: UMB's Commitment to Health Informatics and Bioimaging

[2014-04-11 Fri]

Figure 29: UMB, strategic planning, and Discovery and Innovation

The symposium "Discovery and Innovation: UMB's Commitment to Health Informatics and Bioimaging" will update the research and practice community on gains made in university health informatics, both here at the University of Maryland, Baltimore and other national exemplars.

  • Time: May 5, 2014, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
  • Location: University of Maryland, Baltimore, Southern Management Corporation Campus Center, 621 West Lombard Street Room 349

Speakers Include

Paul Harris Director, Office of Research Informatics Vanderbilt University School of Medicine
Owen White, PhD Director, Center for Health Informatics and Bioimaging (CHIB) and Associate Director, Institute for Genome Sciences University of Maryland School of Medicine
Amitabh Varshney, PhD Director, Institute for Advanced Computer Studies University of Maryland, College Park
Mia Levy, MD, PhD Director, Cancer Clinical Informatics Vanderbilt Ingram Cancer Center
Kathleen Tracy, PhD Associate Director, CHIB and Director, Clinical Translational Research and Informatics Center University of Maryland School of Medicine

Get a first glimpse of UMB's Research HARBOR (Helping Advance Research By Organizing Resources), our interactive web portal to support research and innovation.


UMBC Offers Health Information Technology Master's Starting Fall 2014

[2014-04-14 Mon]

Press release…

The University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) is accepting applications for its new Health Information Technology Master's Program, offered beginning fall 2014.

As technology infiltrates the healthcare industry, the health IT field continues to grow at a rapid pace. The industry presents significant career potential, with postings for health care informatics jobs rising 53% between 2007 and 2012.

Given its large population and dynamic healthcare environment, the Baltimore-Washington area is poised for significant continued growth in the health IT field. UMBC, located just outside of Baltimore, offers a convenient location for industry professionals to receive the credentials needed to move into high-demand health IT roles.

UMBC's MPS in Health IT is an excellent choice for those who already have a degree in an IT or healthcare-related discipline, as well as those whose career has taken them into the field of healthcare IT. Designed with working professionals in mind, the program offers flexible evening, weekend and hybrid course options.

Those interested in learning more about the program can attend UMBC's Professional Graduate Programs Open House on April 23, 2014, for an opportunity to learn more about the curriculum and format, as well as receive information on financing and meet Career Services representatives. Those interested should RSVP in advance.

Home Health IT Summit 2014

[2014-04-01 Tue]

Figure 30: Home Health IT Summit Bringing the HHA Community in Maryland Together at UMBC

The Home Health IT Summit 2014 will be held on Thursday, May 1, 2014, 11:30 am - 4:00 pm, in ITE 456, which is on the fourth floor of the ITE (Information Technology and Engineering) building at UMBC. The summit brings together the movers and shakers of information technology in the home healthcare industry in Maryland. The attendees will discuss the current status and future of health IT in Home Health Agencies. Lunch, coffee, and pastries will be served.

Directions, maps, and parking information


Health IT and Advanced Analytical Models

[2014-03-10 Mon]

Figure 31: Jesus Caban speaking at UMBC IS Department

Jesus Caban

Monday March 10, 2014 at 11:50 am

Presentation in Room ITE 459

ABSTRACT: Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is an invisible injury that is poorly understood and its sequelae can be difficult to accurately diagnose.Patients who have been screened positive for mTBI are at an increased risk of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), headaches, sleep disorders, concentration difficulties, and other problems. During the last decade, a significant amount of attention has been given to the acquisition of clinical data from patients suffering from mTBI. Unfortunately, most of the data collection and analysis has focused on individual or specific aspects of the injury, not necessarily in comprehensive datasets that can enable research in multi-modal techniques to capture the complex biological state of mTBI patients. This talk will present (a) a large-scale informatics database that has been developed to enable interdisciplinary research on mTBI, (b) specific multi-modal analytical techniques necessary in the analysis of clinical data, and (c) innovative visual data mining techniques used to facilitate the exploration of the complex interactions triggered by mTBI.

SHORT BIO: Dr. Caban is the Acting Chief of Clinical and Research Informatics at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE) at Walter Reed Bethesda. He received a Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of Maryland, UMBC (2009), his M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Kentucky (2005), and his B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Puerto Rico (2002). Over the last 9 years Dr. Caban's research has focused on the design and development of techniques to analyze clinical and imaging data. His research and experience has given him the opportunity to work at top healthcare organizations including the National Institutes of Health (NIH), John Hopkins University, and the University of Maryland Medical Center, among others organizations. Dr. Caban is presently an adjunct faculty member at John Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab and an adjunct instructor at the Department of Computer Science at UMBC. Currently, he is serving as the Associate Editor of the JAMIA special issue on Visual Analytics in Healthcare and as the contracting officer representative (COR) and manager for the DoD program on "Watson-Like Technologies for TBI/PTSD Clinical Decision Support and Predictive Analytics".


User-Experience Driven Mobile Health Applications and Services

[2014-02-12 Wed]

Figure 32: Dr. Wac speaking on Mobile Health Apps and Services

By Ms. Katarzyna Wac

Abstract Increasingly, we use mobile applications and services in our daily life activities, to support our needs for information, communication, leisure, or even health and care needs. However, user acceptance of a mobile application depends on at least two conditions: the application's perceived experience, and the appropriateness of the application to the user's context and needs. However, we have a weak understanding of a mobile user's quality of experience (QoE) and the factors influencing it. In my talk i discuss a 4-week-long 29-Android-phone-user study, where we collected both QoE and the underlying network's quality of service measurements through a combination of user, application, and network data on the user's phones. We aimed to derive and improve the understanding of users' QoE for a set of widely used mobile applications in users' natural environments and different daily contexts. I present data acquired in the study and discuss implications for mobile applications design, especially those in mobile health domain. I propose a framework for assuring the user's experience for these applications.

Bio: Ms. Katarzyna Wac is a senior scientist (fr. "MER") at the Institute of Services Science (ISS) of University of Geneva (UniGE) and leader of the Quality of Life (QoL) research area since 2010. She holds a BSc and MSc degree in Computer Science from Wroclaw University of Technology (WUT, Poland), an MSc in Telematics from University of Twente (UT, the Netherlands), as well as a PhD in Information Systems from University of Geneva (Switzerland). In 2003-2004, Ms. Wac was a research staff member at University of Twente. In 2005 she joined University of Geneva as a research and teaching assistant, while keeping her affiliation with the University of Twente. In 2007-2010, Ms. Wac was also affiliated with the MobiHealth BV start-up company. In 2009-2010, Ms. Wac was on leave for a one-year Swiss NSF Fellowship at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU, USA), Human-Computer Interaction Institute (HCII). Along the summer 2013, Ms. Wac was supported by Swiss NSF International Visits program to research at Stanford University (Stanford, USA), and particularly at the Stanford Human-Sciences and Technologies Advanced Research Institute (H-STAR). Ms. Wac's research interests include Quality of Service-aware mobile systems and services with special emphasis on support of adaptive multimedia protocols and Quality of Service mechanisms, especially in the mobile healthcare (i.e., mHealth) domain. Ms. Wac strives towards effective and efficient pervasive mobile computing and communication - meeting the end-user Quality of Service requirements and Quality of Experience expectations. Ms. Wac is since 2012 an Associate Expert of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) European Regional Initiative for mHealth.

Geometric Modeling and Visualization for Science

[2014-02-11 Tue]

Figure 33: Liz Marai at UMBC

Liz Marai

Abstract: The incredible array of measurement technologies available to the scientific community is changing fundamentally our understanding of physical and biological processes. However, scientific data acquisition marks only the first step. To turn numbers into insight, computer graphics and visualization help us model complex systems, make predictions about their behavior, and finally harness the immense power of the human visual perception system to make insights into complex processes possible. In this talk I will present several novel geometric representations, computational modeling, and visual analysis tools to facilitate the simulation and analysis of such complex scientific phenomena. These representations and tools were developed at the Pitt Interdisciplinary Visualization Research lab I direct, and have applications in domains as diverse as neuroimaging, astronomy, biology, and turbulent combustion.

Bio: Liz Marai is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of Pittsburgh, with joint and adjunct appointments in the Pitt Department of Computational Biology and at the CMU Robotics Institute. She is a recipient of an NSF CAREER award, and of multiple Best Paper awards and teaching awards.

Mr. Alaiad becomes a phd candidate

[2014-02-01 Sat]

Figure 34: Mr. Alaiad defends his proposal successfully

Congratulations to Ahmad! He has passed his proposal exam and formally become a PhD candidate. A brief summary of Ahmad's PhD research topic is as follows:

Healthcare is one of the largest growing burdens for the US economy. Effective and efficient home healthcare can help control healthcare costs and improve healthcare quality and increase patient independence. In the future, it will be almost unimaginable to consider home healthcare without the emerging home healthcare information technology including wireless sensor networks and robotics. Despite their potential for home healthcare, previous research on these technologies has largely focused on the technical implementation, technology improvement and clinical applications with very limited discussion of the larger socio-technical, cognitive, and contextual issues that are arguably equally important. Ahmad's PhD dissertation aims to bridge this knowledge gap by building a generic model that explains the adoption behavior for these emerging technologies in home healthcare.


Informatics for Population Health

[2014-01-10 Fri]

By Taxiarchis Botsis, Jan 28, 2014, Tuesday, 10 am, ITE 459, Department of Information Systems, UMBC

This presentation will describe the contribution of Informatics to the promotion of population health and the corresponding use of various methods for getting the most from BIG DATA. The presentation will begin with a short discussion on the disease surveillance for high risk populations using diabetics as a prototype and the nuances of handling large Electronic Health Record data. Then, the talk will focus on the post marketing safety surveillance and, particularly, the extraction of key features from spontaneous reports, the use of case classification methods, the retrieval and quantification of specific information (of interest) and the pattern recognition and signal identification from BIG DATA; certain methodologies with real examples will be presented. A new approach for the literature-based development of case definitions will be also discussed.

Brief Speaker Biography: Taxiarchis Botsis works as a Medical Informatician at the Office of Biostatistics and Epidemiology (OBE), Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research (CBER) at the FDA. He is also an adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Tromsø in Norway. His background lies in the field of Medical Informatics. After receiving his MSc and PhD in Health Informatics from the University of Athens in Greece he worked on the data management of International Randomized Clinical Trials. He then received a fellowship from the European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics (ERCIM) to work as a Post-Doctoral Researcher at the University of Tromsø in Norway; at that time his main area of interest was the disease surveillance for high risk populations. He then spent one year at the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University (New York, NY) where he worked on a number of Electronic Health Record data mining projects. In 2010, he received an ORISE fellowship to work on post-marketing safety surveillance at OBE at the FDA (Rockville, MD) and, last year, he was promoted to a full-time employee. During this period he has been working on various projects and developing new approaches for improving the efficiency, effectiveness and rigorousness of safety surveillance.



Learning Narrative Structure from Annotated Stories

[2013-11-15 Fri]


By Mark Finlayson

Narrative structure is an ubiquitous and intriguing phenomenon. By virtue of this structure humans are able to perform high-level processing of stories necessary for deep understanding; for example, we recognize the presence of 'villainy' or 'revenge', even if those words are not actually present in the text. Narrative structure is an anvil for forging new artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques, and is a window into abstraction and conceptual learning as well as into culture and its influence on cognition. I will discuss various components of my approach to learning narrative structure automatically.

First, I will present Analogical Story Merging (ASM), a new machine learning algorithm for extracting plot patterns from sets of stories. I demonstrate, for the first time, automatically learning a theory of narrative structure from text: ASM can learn a substantive portion of Vladimir Propp's influential theory of the structure of folktale plots. Second, I will discuss data and tools that support this extraction, including: the several deeply-semantically-annotated story corpora I have created; the Story Workbench, a general-purpose text annotation tool I have designed for collecting the corpus data; and the new linguistic representation schemes I have developed to capture important aspects of story semantics. I will highlight a new result, namely, the first-ever demonstration of the reliable double-blind coding of higher-level narrative by trained annotators. Third, I will discuss future applications for my techniques and tools, including in cultural studies, persuasive communication, understanding religious extremism, and understanding the structure of business and law cases, as well as an upcoming project funded by the NIH on investigating narratives that affect patient health care behavior.

Bio: Dr. Mark Finlayson is a Research Scientist at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT. His research focuses on representing, extracting, and using higher-order semantic patterns in natural language, especially with regard to narrative. He received the B.S.E from the University of Michigan in 1998, and the M.S. and Ph.D. from MIT in 2001 and 2012, respectively, all in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. He is general chair of the Computational Models of Narrative (CMN) Workshop series, now in its fifth iteration, and is lead guest editor of a special issue on Computational Models of Narrative, to be published by the Journal of Literary & Linguistic Computing in 2014.

Improving the Reliability and Quality of Electronic Health Record Systems

[2013-11-15 Fri]

Figure 36: Yan Xiao visits UMBC

Yan Xiao, PhD Wednesday, November 20th noon in ITE 459

Electronic health record (EHR) is an integral part of work in growing number of healthcare organizations. Quality of care received by patients and quality of working life of frontline professionals are increasingly tied to EHR. This presentation will share the experience of improving EHR usability in an integrated healthcare delivery organization, the largest in Texas.

Usability as experienced by frontline clinicians is an evolving property of a complex socio-technical system, with leveraging points in hardware infrastructure, user training, technical support services, on-going system integration, optimization, and organizational policies. Case studies will be used to illustrate the role of human factors in understanding usability challenges, in defining approaches to improve EHR related safety and quality, and in identifying research opportunities. On-going projects sponsored both internally and by federal Office of National Coordinator for Health Information technology will be presented as well.

Biographic information: Yan Xiao leads the human factors program at Baylor Heath Care System, Dallas, Texas, and conducts patient safety research sponsored by the federal government. He is adjunct professor at University of Texas at Arlington, and previously adjunct professor at UMBC. His education includes a PhD in human factors from University of Toronto in 1994 and a Masters degree in systems engineering from Beijing Institute of Technology in 1985. He published more than 60 peer reviewed journal articles in the past 20 years in key aspects of human factors, including collaborative work, team leadership, and information systems. He left academia as a tenured full professor of anesthesiology at University of Maryland School of Medicine in 2009. As principal investigators his work has been sponsored by such federal agencies as National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, NASA, and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Industry support for his work! came from top telecommunication, medical devices, and defense companies. He has two patents related to technology support for team performance. He is on editorial board for Human Factors & Journal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making. He serves in a standing panel of AHRQ to advise federal government on sponsored research.

A Systematic Review of the Decision Making Challenges in Home Health Care

[2013-11-01 Fri]

Figure 37: MS Student presenting research

Kabir Goyal, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Date/Time: Friday 8 Nov 2013, 2:30 pm Location: ITE 406, UMBC

Abstract: The presentation shall start by giving a brief introduction about the researcher, what Home Healthcare is, Home Health Agencies, and the professionals who are involved in Home Health care. After that, the presenter will speak about the study plan and its components. The search keywords used in the systematic review will be discussed. Various papers which have been read and which may form an integral part of the final report will be discussed. The presentation will conclude by speaking about the criteria followed for short listing the papers, along with tagging, categorization, and synthesis.


Development and Testing of a Social Networking Site (SNS)-Based Obesity Prevention Program for Korean American Adolescents

[2013-10-18 Fri]

Figure 38: Ms. Park revisiting UMBC

Bu Kyung Park, MSN, RN PhD Student Nursing Informatics School of Nursing University of Maryland

Date/Time: Friday, November 1, 12 pm Location: ITE 456, UMBC

Abstract: In this presentation, Ms. Park will introduce her dissertation project entitled "Healthy Teens," which is supported by the Sigma Theta Tau International, Pi Chapter.

The prevalence of adolescent obesity has more than tripled during the past three decades. Adolescent obesity increases risk for a number of comorbidities and creates economic burden for families and the nation. Given that using social networking sites (SNSs) has become ingrained in adolescents' daily life, obesity prevention education via SNSs for lifestyle modification can be an innovative and promising approach.

Although current obesity prevalence among Korean American (KA) adolescents is relatively lower than the national average, acculturation to American lifestyle increases the risk of obesity for the second and the third generations of KA immigrants compared to the first generation immigrants. Therefore, obesity prevention education tailored for KA adolescent lifestyle is important. The purposes of this proposed study are to (1) develop a social cognitive theory-based "Healthy Teens" program on Facebook for KA adolescent obesity prevention, which includes physical activity and healthy eating modules, and (2) conduct usability testing of the "Healthy Teens" program for a future randomized controlled trial. Usability testing will be conducted using two usability assessment methods: (1) heuristic evaluation by three experts, which will identify usability problems based on Nielsen's heuristics; and (2) user testing, which aims to assess usual users' performance on the Healthy Teens program using observation, a think-aloud method, and a questionnaire by 20 KA adolescents (13-17 years old). Using a convenience sampling method, participants will be recruited from two Korean language schools in Maryland. Both qualitative and quantitative data will be collected and analyzed. The expected impact of this proposed study is two-fold. First, this proposed study will develop an innovative Facebook-based KA adolescent obesity prevention program that will be used for a future larger scale study. Second, the findings will provide important ground work on how to use an SNS to develop a structured, theory-based health education program for adolescents and contribute to other investigators' research that uses similar technologies.

Brief Bio: Ms. Bu Kyung Park is a PhD student in School of Nursing at the University of Maryland. Her research focuses on the use of Web-based interventions to prevent obesity among children and adolescent. She has participated in various studies (conducted by her advisor, Dr. Eun-Shim Nahm) as a research assistant including mHealth, qualitative, and usability studies as well as randomized controlled trials. During her years in the PhD program, she has found advantages to adapting SNSs for adolescent health research. She recently published "A systematic review of social networking sites: innovative platforms for health research targeting adolescents and young adults" in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship based on extensive review of the literature.


Dari AlHuwail passes comps

[2013-09-09 Mon]

Figure 39: Health IT Student passes his comps

Congratulations to Dari! He passed his PhD comprehensive exam in the area of Health Informatics.

Dr. Koru receives a research grant from Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)

[2013-09-03 Tue]

Güneş Koru receives a research grant from Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality to investigate effective and efficient Health IT adoption in Home Health Care.

Higher quality of care, improved health outcomes, and reduced costs become important targets in home health care due its necessity and importance. Successful and effective adoption of health information technology (IT) by Home Health Agencies (HHAs) is a critical tool for achieving those targets. However, currently, the level of health IT adoption is limited in HHAs for various reasons including the issues with eligibility to receive incentives for electronic health records systems purchase from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. Therefore, the major problem for advancing health IT in the home health care industry is to leverage health IT to effectively respond to HHAs' important challenges and opportunities about improving the quality of care and health outcomes as well as reducing costs; this should be done in an efficient manner by considering the contextual determinants of health IT adoption. So far, the pressing challenges and opportunities of HHAs have not been sufficiently studied from an information systems analysis perspective. In addition, the determinants of health IT adoption in HHAs have not been studied by collecting rich contextual data from HHAs. To address this gap, this research project will: (i) Assess the challenges experienced by HHAs in delivering home care, including the privacy and security challenges, and the opportunities to improve quality of care and health outcomes, to reduce costs, and to improve access (ii) Assess the current health IT adoption activities and investigate the issues that can be addressed for successful and more efficient health IT adoption (iii) Iteratively refine, organize, and report the evidence about health IT adoption in HHAs in an evidence base and make recommendations about key solutions and strategies that can be implemented by HHAs as well as other parties such as vendors and government agencies.


Adventures in Health Informatics: Real-world Experience in Improving Healthcare Access, Quality, and Value Using Health IT

[2013-04-09 Tue]

Figure 40: Dr. Daviss shares experiences

Steve Daviss, MD, DFAPA Clinical Assistant Professor at University of Maryland School of Medicine

Date/Time: Tuesday, April 16, 7:10 pm Location: ITE 456, UMBC

Abstract: Guest lecturer Steven Daviss MD, clinical assistant professor at University of Maryland School of Medicine, will discuss his experience in using HIT in his practice as the Chair of Psychiatry at the University of Maryland's Baltimore Washington Medical Center. Dr Daviss will share the many hats he wears as he navigates the HIT landscape, and will address practical issues that face HIT workers, including change management, governance, project management, engaging patients and health care professionals, clinical decision support, CPOE, patient safety, and regulatory and policy development and compliance. His bio is at He tweets as @HITshrink.

Short Bio: Steve Daviss is a physician double-boarded in Psychiatry and in Psychosomatic Medicine, which is the intersection of primary care and psychiatry. He is the Chair of the Department of Psychiatry at Baltimore Washington Medical Center since 2004, and is Clinical Assistant Professor in the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he also attended medical school. He trained at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic. He completed an NIMH-funded clinical research fellowship in schizophrenia at the Maryland Psychiatric Research Center.

Dr Daviss is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. He is Chair of the APA Committee on Electronic Health Records, APA Assembly Representative for Maryland, Past-President of the Maryland Psychiatric Society, and is active in the Legislative Committees for Medchi and for the MPS, where he is often called upon to analyze legislation and testify before the Maryland General Assembly. His experience includes patient-centered health care policy, health informatics, and use of health IT and social media in health care. He has served as past co-chair of the CCHIT Behavioral Health Work Group, where he helped direct the development of certification standards for behavioral health electronic health records with a diverse group of clinical, informatics, and vendor stakeholders. He has served on URAC's Health Standards Committee since 2004, where he helped develop mental health parity (MHPAEA) compliance standards for URAC's Health Plan accreditation in preparation for the Affordable Care Act's Health Benefit Exchange programs. He also serves on the Maryland Health Care Commission's Health Information Exchange Policy Board, on the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene's Behavioral Health Integration Work Groups, and on the Clinical Committee for the Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP), Maryland's state-designated HIE. Dr Daviss is the Chief Medical Information Officer for M3 Information, LLC, a DC-based mobile mental health IT company that developed the peer-reviewed, multidimensional, patient-centered mental health screening tool, WhatsMyM3. He recently helped his hospital implement and switch from Cerner to Epic. Enthusiastic about merging his clinical and administrative experience with health care policy, informatics, and health care reform efforts, his goal is to integrate behavioral healthcare with physical healthcare to save costs and improve healthcare quality and outcomes.

Dr Daviss is a member of the American Psychiatric Association, American Medical Informatics Association, American Association for Technology and Psychiatry, American Medical Association, Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine, American Society of Addiction Medicine, HL7, HIMSS, Maryland HIMSS, Maryland Psychiatric Society, Medchi, and the Southern Psychiatric Association. He serves on the Boards of the nonprofit organizations, Maryland Foundation for Psychiatry and the Anne Arundel County Mental Health Agency, Inc.


Nursing Informatics and Consumer Health Informatics

[2013-03-05 Tue]

Figure 41: Nursing Professor Nahm talks about consumer health informatics

Eun-Shim Nahm, PhD, RN, FAAN Associate Professor, OSAH Program Director, Nursing Informatics School of Nursing University of Maryland

Date/Time: Tuesday, March 12, 7:10 pm Location: ITE 456, UMBC

Abstract: The aim of the presentation is two-fold. In the first part, the domain of nursing informatics within health care informatics will be introduced. The unique roles and practices of informatics nurse specialists will be discussed within the framework of the recent national health information technology initiatives. In the second part, current trend in consumer health informatics and selected applications in practice and research will be discussed.

Brief Bio: Dr. Eun-Shim Nahm is an Associate Professor and the Program Director for the Nursing Informatics program at the University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON). Her research focuses on the use of technology-based interventions to promote health and to manage chronic illnesses of older adults. She has conducted various studies in this field, including qualitative, measurement, theory testing, and usability studies, as well as randomized controlled trials. She has developed and successfully implemented multiple online health behavior interventions for adults aged 50 and older and their caregivers. Dr. Nahm is the recipient of multiple grant awards from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Her most recent R01 grant project, "Dissemination of a Theory-Based Bone Health Program in Online Communities," is supported by the National Institute of Nursing Research. She has published more than 35 peer reviewed journal articles and five book chapters in her area of expertise. She also has given numerous presentations at regional, national, and international scientific conferences. At the UMSON, Dr. Nahm teaches graduate level nursing informatics courses and doctoral-level research courses and has mentored many master's and doctoral students.


Connecting People, Compressing Time and Creating Opportunities: The Promise of Mobile Health

[2013-02-02 Sat]

Figure 42: Global Health Professor Labrique speaks at UMBC

Alain B. Labrique, PhD, MHS, MS, MACE Director, Johns Hopkins Global mHealth Initiative

  • Assistant Professor, Department of International Health/Epidemiology (jt) Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland, USA Department of Community-Public Health Johns Hopkins School of Nursing (jt)
  • Director, Johns Hopkins Bangladesh, Ltd
  • Visiting Professor, Xiamen University, Fujian, China

Date/Time: Tuesday, Feb 26, 7:10 pm Location: ITE 459, UMBC

Abstract: In these final months leading to the 2015 Millennium Development Goal deadline, we find ourselves redoubling efforts to bend downward the trajectories of change, striving to reach the UN targets set in September 2000. Over the past decade, these shared goals have galvanized the global community, across national boundaries and political agendas to strive for certain universal targets – from dramatically reducing global poverty and improving equitable access to education to achieving substantial reductions in infant, child and maternal mortality. Between October 2011 and March of this year, these ambitions were further challenged by a global population that finally exceeded 7 billion, further straining efforts to reduce inequities. These challenges start at the very beginning of life – providing a clean and safe birth, attended by competent care–providers – through childhood – ensuring timely vaccination against major causes of death – into adolescence – providing education that prepares young men and women for a productive future. Into adulthood, these encompass access to employment, appropriate financial remuneration, competent and affordable healthcare, access to adequate nutrition and protection from disease.

With a denominator of 7 billion, it is not difficult to rationalize both why inequities in health, education or gender equity persist and why national or global institutions fail to deliver on promises. Populations, rural and urban, socially or economically disenfranchised, have been characterized as the "bottom billion" or the "ultra poor" –where incomes stagnate at less than US$1.25 per day. One basic component linking these challenges is that of measurement – making every life count, irrespective of where a child is born or when a pregnant woman dies. This has remained a lofty, unattainable goal – until now. By the end of 2010, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) estimated that over 90% of the world's population lived within reach of a mobile phone network, with over 143 countries having access to high-speed Internet services. In 2011, this UN agency estimated that 5.9 billion mobile phone subscriptions reflected a 79% penetration in the developing world alone. Of the one third of the global population using the Internet, 62% are residents of the developing world. In the last fiscal quarter of 2011 alone, 180 million new mobile subscribers were registered, reflecting the rate of the near-exponential growth in this sector.

This rapid, market-driven technologic revolution has spawned a sea change in global development. Initially, organizations like the Grameen Bank capitalized on mobile technology as an innovative small enterprise solution for landless women to provide connectivity to their villages. These business models are rapidly becoming obsolete as mobile penetration increases and access to phones becomes ubiquitous. In the past decade, entirely new fields of research and implementation science have emerged, prefaced by an 'm', representing the novel 'mobile' facet of their approach: mHealth, mBanking, mAgriculture, and mLearning.

Mobile technologies are also rejuvenating the domain of telemedicine and electronic health (eHealth), which were previously largely "tethered" systems, focused on facility–based record—keeping, supply chain monitoring and sometimes, decision-support. Mobile technologies serve to untether these systems from their facilities. They widen the reach and versatility of the eHealth infrastructure to support frontline health workers, where and when they need access to patient information, while also allowing them to contribute to the clinical record from the field.

This is, to many of us, the most exciting endgame for mobile health, or mHealth – a pragmatic and now, tested, series of solutions to help us bridge that Last Mile, to accelerate progress towards the MDGs by 2015 and beyond. Over the past 5 years, hundreds of pilot projects across the globe have tested mHealth strategies to increase the capacity of community health workers and improve the quality of care received by the populations they serve. From this field of a thousand flowers of innovation, a healthy bouquet of solid enterprise solutions have emerged and are being used in countries at regional and even national levels. These systems enable tasks that were previously thought to be logistically impossible – enumeration of populations; registration of pregnancies, births and deaths; scheduling of antenatal, postpartum, and immunization visits with accountability for missed or delayed contacts; and providing at least a rudimentary health record. Importantly, these systems also provide a means to improve system efficiencies, from worker management to monitoring supply chains (including identifying counterfeit medications), as well as real–time monitoring and reporting of vital events and system performance. Most importantly, the most vital function of mobile phones, often lost in the whirlwind of innovation–voice communication – is a central facet of the mHealth revolution, allowing workers to access peer and supervisor guidance when and where they need it.

Frontline health workers who are often the first and only point of care for most of the 'bottom billion' and the world's rural poor, have been disconnected from the parent health systems they serve. Their isolation and often rudimentary training, limited the capacity of this cadre to provide little more than basic care, often disjointed from the broader health system within which they function. Mobile systems now exist to address gaps which, until recently, seemed intractable. Strategies exist that provide continued skills development and training to frontline health workers, and that integrate them as full-fledged members of their health systems. mHealth systems have empowered families with the information they need to maintain their health, and knowledge about services they should expect from the government or health providers. Exciting strategies that bridge the worlds of mHealth and mFinance offer novel approaches to demand–side financing and performance–based incentive schemes.

In 2012, we find ourselves armed with functional mHealth systems, with a growing evidence–base for what works under various conditions. Mobile technologies continue to grow in sophistication and shrink in cost, providing fuel to several visions. We can imagine, in the not-too-distant future, a mobile phone being part of the core set of tools provided to every new community health worker, or a temporary phone, connected to essential downstream services and health information, being given to pregnant women as part of their antenatal services, as banally as an Iron-Folic Acid supplement. Through these visions, we build on the legacies established by public health giants John B. Grant, whose work established the models for training China's "barefoot doctors" in the 1960s and 1970s, and Carl Taylor, founder of the academic discipline of International Health and proponent of the vision that empowered communities and frontline health workers can shape their own futures. Without mHealth, these leaders changed the delivery of care to disconnected populations across the globe – imagine what is possible to accomplish under a new paradigm of universal connectedness. In the next decade, if these mobile-enhanced systems have not been integrated as mainstream approaches to delivering health, financial, education and legal services across socioeconomic boundaries, it will not be because we weren't able to do so, it will be because we will have chosen not to.

Short Bio:

Dr. Alain Labrique is the founding director of the Johns Hopkins University Global mHealth Initiative, a multi-disciplinary consortium of over 70 faculty and 150 students engaged in mHealth innovation and research across the Johns Hopkins system. An infectious disease epidemiologist, with training in molecular biology and over a decade of field experience running large population-based research studies, Dr. Labrique serves on the faculty in the Global Disease Epidemiology and Control Program of the Department of International Health. He holds joint appointments in the Department of Epidemiology, Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Department of Community-Public Health in the School of Nursing of the Johns Hopkins University. He is lead investigator in several research projects measuring the impact of mobile information and communications technologies on improving maternal, neonatal and infant outcomes in resource-limited settings, primarily in South Asia. Dr. Labrique was recognized as one of the Top 11 mHealth Innovators in 2011.

In addition to developing training curricula for mHealth education, Labrique serves as an mHealth advisor to several international and global health agencies, including WHO, USAID and the mHealth Alliance. In addition to teaching and mentoring students at the Bloomberg School, Dr. Labrique and his team are working to understand the "trajectories to mortality" in resource-limited settings experienced by women of reproductive age and infants, to identify novel opportunities for intervention. Dr. Labrique is also actively engaged in designing, exploring and validating appropriate diagnostic and public health technologies, and is the inventor of a number of diagnostic and anthropometric devices.



HIV online information and services targeting African-American females

[2012-12-03 Mon]

Figure 43: Dr. Payton visiting UMBC

Fay Cobb Payton, PhD. This research is supported by the National Science Foundation.

Date/Time: Friday, December 7, 2012 10 am Location: ITE 459, UMBC

HIV online information and services targeting African American females are of particular interest given the impact of this infectious disease in this underserved community. That is, data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention show that African Americans are the racial/ethnic group most affected by HIV.

In 2009, Black women accounted for 30% of the estimated new HIV infections among all Blacks. The estimated rate of new HIV infections for Black women was more than 15 times as high as the rate for White women, and more than three times as high as that of Latina women (CDC Data, 2009). Numerous technology-based tools and applications have been designed for intended populations and users based on age, gender, ethnicity and medical conditions, including smoking cessation, breast cancer, Alzheimer's Disease and heart disease. Prior research (Payton, 2009; Payton and Kiwanuka-Tondo, 2009; Payton, et al., * evaluated health information technology applications relative to people, processes and patients as well as the HIV prevalence among Black women. As articulated in Payton, et al. (2011), patient-centered care has its focus in community involvement, participation and formulation, such as social networks or support groups, thus enabling social change. According to Healthy People 2020, the criticality of health communication and health information technology lends itself to a myriad of topics, including building health skills and knowledge, supporting community and home care, facilitating clinical and consumer decision-making and improving the public health infrastructure. Further, Healthy People 2020 articulates the need for the application of evidence-based best practices in user-centered design approaches to dissemination health information across underserved and under-represented populations to better understand health disparities and health outcomes. Given this context, interdisciplinary approaches can enable improved design and awareness while creating a service experience to address the health issues affecting and infecting a vulnerable population, such as Black female college students. Aforementioned research studies provide insight to social models that can drive the technology design and experiences among Black females. In an effort to reach underserved populations, engagement, design research, communication and human computer interaction frameworks collectively provide the theoretical bases to better engage and design service systems.

Speaker Bio:

Dr. Fay Cobb Payton is the director and founder of, MyHIN, MyHealthImpactNetwork, a social network site which focuses on health disparities and social media technology interventions. MyHIN is starting with HIV and prevention information targeting Black female college students and is the result of a National Science Foundation grant. Dr. Payton is an editor for Health Systems, an OR Society journal, a Visiting Scholar at RTI in the Health Communications and Technology group and Associate Professor of Information Systems at North Carolina State University. As a 2009-2010 American Council on Education Fellow, she worked with the NCSU Institute of Emerging Issues and North Carolina Central University.

She earned a Ph.D. in Information & Decision Systems (with a specialty in Health Care Systems) from Case Western Reserve University. Prior to joining the academy, she worked in corporate IT and consulting for IBM, Ernst & Young/Cap Gemini and Time, Inc. Dr. Payton was featured in Diversity Careers in Engineering and Information Technology for her mentoring work with minority and majority STEM undergraduate and doctoral students.

Her research interests include healthcare informatics and disparities; data management, analytics and data quality; and the digital divide, STEM careers and workforce development. Her recent health care publications have appeared in the European Journal of Information Systems, Journal of Health Disparities and Practice, Health Care Management Science, and Telemedicine and eHealth. She recently received NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduate support for

She was a 2007 National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Fellow where she worked on data management and communications strategies for a breast cancer study. She was awarded the first SAS Institute Fellow in 2006 for her work in analytics and teaching in the IS classroom, the 2006 & 2007 NC State University Alumni Extension Award. She is a member of the IEEE Medical Technology Policy Committee, Decision Science Institute Strategy International Planning Committee. She is the co-editor of Adaptive Health Care Management Information Systems.

In the digital divide and inclusion domain, she recently published, "Considering the political roles of Black talk radio and the Afrosphere in response to the Jena 6:Social media and the blogosphere", in Information Technology & People. Her work has appeared in the International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences, Communication of the ACM and Encyclopedia of Information Science and Technology.

Dr. Payton serves on several local and national boards and has been recognized in NC State and other media outlets for research and mentoring work. She will deliver the keynote for the 2013 International Conference on ICT for Africa in Zimbabwe.

Follow her at:


AEGIS: Healthcare IT and Interoperability

[2012-11-03 Sat]

Figure 44: Mr. Hyland on Interoperability

By Mario Hyland

Senior Vice President,


Date/Time: Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:10 pm Location: ITE 459, UMBC

AEGIS.Net Inc. is a CMMI and ISO rated consulting firm with a focus on Healthcare IT and interoperability, defining interoperability standards, procedures, and helping to ensure quality of care given to patients. Their clients include the VA with the VLER initiative, Office of the National Coordinator, the Healtheway eHealth exchange and the Interoperability Work Group (IWG), and Meaningful Use Standard testing through NIST. Mario has led the efforts at these initiatives to ensure interoperability and organizations adhere to the standards and specifications as produced by the governing bodies.

Aegis recently was selected by the National Institute of Standards and Technology to establish a health IT test infrastructure that verifies conformance and interoperability with industry standards as part of meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs). The NIST $6.25 million contract award is one example of the recognition and rising importance of testing for interoperability to make sure that health IT systems have standards in place according to specifications and can effectively exchange information.

The initial emphasis of the NIST contract will be on testing the standards for meaningful use, but it will also provide test tools to support electronic health record communication and electronic clinical document exchanges, such as for e-prescribing, lab results, immunization and patient administration, as health care moves in that direction, according to a recent NIST announcement in Federal Business Opportunities.

In another testing effort, is partnering with the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) to use its testing software, the Aegis Developers Integration Lab, to test interoperability for the EHR/HIE Interoperability Workgroup, an effort led by the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) that includes 15 states and 34 health information exchanges (HIEs). Aegis will work with CCHIT to make sure that the interfaces are consistent between the health IT and HIEs across multiple states and systems.

The open source Developers Integration Lab (DIL) is the heart of Aegis' testing, according to Mario Hyland, senior vice president and founder of Rockville, Md.-based Aegis.Net Inc. Hyland spoke with Government Health IT while at the Oct. 17 conference of the Open Source Electronic Health Record Agent (OSEHRA), a non-profit organization formed to modernize VistA for open source and to contribute to the VA-Defense Department's integrated electronic health record (iEHR). is a participant.


Maryland Health Information Exchange

[2012-10-23 Tue]

By Angela Plunkett and Scott Afzal

Date/Time: Thursday, November 1, 2012 7:10 pm Location: ITE 459, UMBC

Health Information Exchange (HIE) involves the secure electronic sharing of clinical and administrative information among disparate health information systems for clinical care, process improvement/simplification, research, and reporting. Widespread adoption of HIE has the potential to create efficiencies in the health care delivery system by reducing duplicate medical tests and improving care coordination among health providers, leading to better health outcomes for patients and public health.

Strategies to accelerate HIE are being implementing nationwide to realize the full benefits that HIE can provide. In August 2009, CRISP was designated as Maryland's statewide HIE. Efforts to facilitate the exchange of clinical information have focused on value-based technology solutions, sound privacy and security policies, financial sustainability, transparency, and stakeholder collaboration. Over the last two years, the statewide HIE has made considerable progress in implementing the infrastructure to support HIE; all acute care hospitals are now making electronic patient information available to other providers. The statewide HIE includes over four million unique patients and, at the end of September 2012, has more than 27 million clinical documents available. HIE is a core technical requirement in supporting coordinated episodic care delivery in the context of the Affordable Care Act and evolving value-based payment reforms.


Angela Plunkett is Division Chief, for Health Information Exchange at the Maryland Health Care Commission's (MHCC) Center for Health Information Technology. Angela manages the health information exchange Policy Board and coordinates various health information technology regulatory and research initiatives of the MHCC to advance secure health information exchange and widespread adoption of electronic health records. Angela holds a M.A. and M.P.P. from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration and Harris School of Public Policy.

Scott Afzal is a principal of Audacious Inquiry and directs the firm's Health Information Systems practice. He joined the firm in 2007, bringing several years of project management and systems integration expertise. Scott has served as the Program Director of Maryland's statewide health information exchange planning effort since the inception of CRISP, Maryland's state-designated entity for HIE. Scott is responsible for the successful deployment of the CRISP HIE infrastructure and for development of new service offerings. Scott holds a BSBA in Business Management from Bucknell University.


Distinguished Lecture by Charles P. Friedman: Learning Health System

[2012-09-13 Thu]

Figure 45: Learning Health System leader visiting UMBC

October 19, 2012 at 11 am in ITE 456

Presented by the Department of Information Systems, UMBC



It is widely recognized that the nation requires a Learning Health System (LHS) to provide higher quality, safer, and more affordable health care. An LHS is one that can routinely and securely aggregate data from disparate sources, convert the data to knowledge, and disseminate that knowledge, in actionable forms, to everyone who can benefit from it. Achieving a Learning Health System at national scale requires solution of a wide array of technology and policy problems and, as such, is the consummate challenge in health informatics. This presentation will describe the LHS, why it is vital to our future, the specific problems that must be addressed, and a pathway through which the nation might achieve an LHS.


Short Bio

His appointment at Michigan follows 8 years of work for the federal government, prior to which Dr. Friedman served for 26 years as a university faculty member and administrator.

Most recently, Dr. Friedman held executive positions at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. From 2007 to 2009 he was Deputy National Coordinator and from 2009 to 2011 he was ONC's Chief Scientific Officer. While at ONC, Friedman oversaw a diverse portfolio of nationwide activities that included development of a "learning health system", health IT research and workforce development programs, evaluation of ONC's programs, clinical decision support, and international cooperation for eHealth. He was the lead author of the first national health IT strategic plan which was released in June of 2008.

From 2003 to 2006 Dr. Friedman was Senior Scholar at the National Library of Medicine where he oversaw NLM's training and bioinformatics grant portfolios, and played a prominent role in developing the National Centers for Biomedical Computing. From 2006 to 2007, he served as an Associate Director and Chief Information Officer of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

Prior to his work in the government, from 1996 to 2003, Dr. Friedman was Professor, Associate Vice Chancellor for Biomedical Informatics, and Founding Director of the Center for Biomedical Informatics at the University of Pittsburgh. In these roles he functioned as Chief Information Officer of the university's schools of the health sciences and directed the Pittsburgh program for Integrated Advanced Information Systems (IAIMS). He also served for many years in a range of faculty and administrative roles at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He directed UNC's Office of Educational Development and served as Assistant Dean for Medical Education and Medical Informatics.

Dr. Friedman is an elected fellow and past president of the American College of Medical Informatics, and an Associate Editor of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. He was the Founding Chair of the Group on Information Resources of the Association of American Medical Colleges.




Mr. Haslbeck graduates

[2012-08-09 Thu]

Figure 46: Mr. Haslbeck now has a masters degree

Kirk Haslbeck successfully defended his thesis. Kirk developed an approach and implemented a tool to measure patients' risk for successful re-identification in the re-identification attacks under various data publishing scenarios by using the Census 2010 data. Congratulations to Kirk and his family!


Mr. Katukuri wins a poster award

[2012-04-23 Mon]

Figure 47: Congrats Mr. Katukuri

Mr. Katukuri received a runner up award with his poster presentation in the Poster day organized by the Information Systems Department at UMBC. Mr. Katukuri presented a methodology designed by Güneş Koru for one of the upcoming projects. Congratulations to Mr. Katukuri!

Mr. Azari wins the poster day

[2012-04-23 Mon]


Mr. Ali Azari received the winner award with his poster presentation on Length of stay Prediction for the Hospitalized Patients in the Poster day organized by the Information Systems Department at UMBC. This is from an independent study research conducted in the Spring 2012.

Congratulations to Mr. Azari!!


In Spring 2013, Dr. Koru teaches the IS 461/661 Healthcare Informatics

[2012-04-02 Mon]

IS 461/661 continues to introduce the major areas of Health IT outlined below. It will also include a number of guest speakers who will be chosen from the prominent leaders of the Health IT community in the Baltimore-Washington area. The three major course objectives are that the students will:

  • Develop a broad knowledge of Health IT
  • Understand the challenges and opportunities associated with adopting and meaningfully using Health Information Technology
  • Establish familiarity with the related literature, terminology, and concepts which will enable them to communicate with the other Health IT professionals more effectively and efficiently


    Health Informatics: Practical Guide for Healthcare and Information

Technology Professionals (Fifth Edition) by Robert E Hoyt, Nora Bailey, and Ann Yoshihashi

The course topics will include:

  • Online Medical Resources Search
  • Engines Evidence-Based Medicine and Clinical Practice Guidelines
  • Disease Management and Registries
  • Quality Improvement Strategies
  • Patient Safety
  • Electronic Prescribing
  • Telemedicine
  • Picture Archiving and Communication Systems
  • Bioinformatics
  • Public Health Informatics
  • E-Research in Health Care

Why learning about Health IT is Important?

Health care is a major challenge area for the US. Despite the advancements with the use of information systems in other fields, there is a very big need to adopt information technology effectively and efficiently in various areas of health care. Health IT is expected to support the target of achieving reduced costs, better care, and better health. Therefore, it is a national area of priority regardless of the specific US administration, i.e., both Democrats and Republicans are in favor of supporting health IT. Huge investments were made into this area during both Bush and Obama administrations. As a result, new jobs and research opportunities were created. Our Baltimore-Washington area is one of the important hubs for this industry with many related hospitals, corporations, governmental agencies, and research institutions. The area of health IT will further expand in the future, and its importance will further increase due to the information intensive nature of health services and care.


Dr. Koru will be teaching the IS 460/660 Healthcare Informatics - I in Fall 2012

[2012-03-22 Thu]

IS 460/660 Healthcare Informatics is related to an area which is becoming more and more important every day. Why is it so? According to the data presented by CMS, Since 2004, the National Health Expenditures (NHE) increased from 1,855.4 Billion Dollars (B), which was the 15.6% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), to 2,702 B in 2011 (17.3% of GDP). NHE in 2019 is projected to be 13,382 B (19.3%). Although the estimates beyond 2019 are not published, it can be easily argued that if NHE increases at the same rate, given the crucial nature of health care, there will be considerably less resources left for other areas important to our society in the future decades.

In this large picture, there has been a bi-partisan support for Health Information Technology (Health IT) with the hope that it can help reduce some of the healthcare costs while positively contributing to the quality of care and health outcomes. On the other hand, using IT to create sustained benefits presents complex issues caused by the unique characteristics of health settings, professionals, organizations, laws, etc., in addition to the technical ones. As a result, when it comes to Health IT, there are many interesting and important interdisciplinary and applied topics well-worth to learn and discuss.

IS 460/660 will discuss the major areas of Health IT outlined below. It will also include a number of guest speakers who will be chosen from the prominent leaders of the Health IT community in the Baltimore-Washington area. The three major course objectives are that the students will:

  • Develop a broad knowledge of Health IT
  • Understand the challenges and opportunities associated with adopting and meaningfully using Health Information Technology
  • Establish familiarity with the related literature, terminology, and concepts which will enable them to communicate with the other Health IT professionals more effectively and efficiently


Health Informatics: Practical Guide for Healthcare and Information Technology Professionals (Fifth Edition) by Robert E Hoyt, Nora Bailey, and Ann Yoshihashi

The course topics will include

  • Health Informatics Overview
  • Healthcare Data, Information, and Knowledge
  • Electronic Health Records, Practice Management Systems
  • Health Information Exchange
  • Data Standards
  • Architectures of Information Systems
  • Health Information Privacy and Security
  • Health Informatics Ethics
  • Consumer Health Informatics
  • Mobile Technology in Health

NOTE: The students taking this course will be able to make a transition to the second course Healthcare Informatics - II in Spring 2013 easily, if they would like to explore certain topics in depth.