Skip to main content

New Survey Sets the Shopping List for Healthcare Technology Purchases

Analysis  |  By Eric Wicklund  
   March 23, 2023

With ViVE on the doorstep, a new survey finds that healthcare decision-makers are looking for technology that addresses workforce shortages, prepares the health system for a recession and improves data management.

Healthcare executives looking to make technology deals at next week's ViVE conference are looking for solutions that address clinician and staff burnout or help the health system weather a potential recession, a new survey reports.

The survey of some 300 decision-makers in healthcare, conducted by Intelligent Medical Objects, also puts data storage and analysis tools at the top of the shopping list, while AI tools aren't yet worth all the flashy marketing.

According to the survey, 94% say they plan to invest in technology that either addresses workforce issues or prepares the health system for a recession. 

“Hospital providers face a lot of uphill battles, from data integration to clinician burnout, and this survey shined a light on how data integration can have a positive impact on patient care and day-to-day operations,” Ann Barnes, the company's CEO, said in a press release accompanying the survey. “It’s helpful to understand the most pressing needs as US provider organizations are making bold changes to improve patient care and are adapting their strategies faster than ever before.”

The survey comes as healthcare CIOs and chief digital health officers converge in Nashville next week for the ViVE 2023 conference, and as they and other decision-makers prepare for the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society's (HIMSS) annual conference next month in Chicago.  Both events are expected to feature discussion on a wide range of critical healthcare issues, including staff and clinician shortages brought on by burnout and stress, the upcoming end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, new technologies and programs like telehealth, remote patient monitoring, Hospital-at-Home, digital therapeutics and AI, and federal efforts to improve privacy and security, enforce prior authorization rules and improve interoperability and data sharing.

Data will likely figure in a lot of conversations, according to the IMO survey.

Almost all of the decision-makers surveyed say their organizations must improve the way it uses data to improve healthcare delivery and operations, and 90% said they've had moments in the past where they lost or leaked revenue due to inefficient practices.

The survey shows similar results from other surveys and reports that list workforce management as the top priority of healthcare organizations, many of which are struggling to retain clinicians and field a good IT department. Many are also worried about the economy, with hospital margins at or perilously close to the red and a recent report indicating more than 60 hospitals are at risk of closure.

According to the survey, 71% cited maintaining or improving clinical care quality as the most important internal risk. Some 65% percent cited problems with clinician burnout, while half cited administrative burnout and 45% cited data issues.

The survey also pointed out a continuing issue for healthcare organizations looking to stay on top of the latest technologies while facing staffing issues. Some 84% of those surveyed said their health system is working with more then 20 vendors. Almost a third said software integration was their biggest problem with vendors, while 29% cited inadequate training provided by vendors and 17% reported long implementation timelines.

And that's a problem. With the economy struggling, many healthcare organizations are taking a hard look at new purchases and technologies, and requiring solid proof of ROI before they consider any new purchases. Health systems aren't going to invest in anything new if they don't see immediate and lasting value, and they certainly won't be interested in products that take a long time to install.

Finally, healthcare leaders are interested in AI technology, and both this and another recent survey pointed out that they're using the technology to address back-end operational and workforce management issues. But at the same time, many of those surveyed said the hype currently outweighs the value.

“For technology to have a positive impact on providers, it has to get out of the way and integrate seamlessly into clinical workflows,” Steven Rube, MD, IMO's chief clinical officer, said in the press release. “This survey validated an assumption that … providers needed assistance to seamlessly integrate relevant clinical data in the care of their patients. The pandemic unleashed a torrent of investment in new healthcare software solutions, and provider organizations have struggled to understand which types of software will present the best ROI."

Eric Wicklund is the associate content manager and senior editor for Innovation at HealthLeaders.


A new survey of some 300 healthcare decision-makers by Intelligent Medical Objects finds that 94% plan to invest in technology that improves workforce management and/or prepares the health system for a potential recession.

Almost all of those surveyed say they've lost revenue because of data issues, and want technology that improves data capture and analysis.

Many health systems are also dealing with more than 20 vendors, and are reporting problems with integration, data silos and long implementation times.

Get the latest on healthcare leadership in your inbox.