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We recently welcomed Tina Grande to our “There’s a Better Way: Smart Talk on Healthcare and Technology” podcast. Grande is Executive Vice President of Policy at the Healthcare Leadership Council, and as Surescripts Chief Marketing Officer Melanie Marcus says, Grande has policy and healthcare “in her blood.”

Delivering patient information—on a TV screen

Tina Grande’s first “real job” after college involved filing paperwork for a startup that aimed to display information on a television screen at the patient’s bedside, so doctors could see what they needed to know at a glance, rather than flip through a paper chart.

At the startup, Grande was witness to one of the earliest forms of healthcare digitization.

“It was revolutionary at the time,” she says, tongue in cheek, thinking of the rapid advancements in healthcare technology that were soon to come. “Little did I know.”

Bringing people together to improve healthcare

Grande then shifted to healthcare policy and joined Senator Dave Durenberger as a junior staffer, where she dove deep into Medicare and saw first-hand how difficult it could be to understand. There are thousands of pages of information and regulation.

“For a health system, long-term care facility, whatever it might be," Grande says, “it’s a lot to digest to stay in compliance.”

The experience propelled Grande back into business, and as an entrepreneur, she worked to transform 44,000 pages of Medicare policy into a consumable electronic format for policymakers and providers alike. To do this, Grande brought people together: coders in San Francisco on one hand, and policy wonks in Washington, D.C., on the other.

Grande continued to build her career at the intersection of healthcare, technology and national policy at the Healthcare Leadership Council, where her fundamental mission is to bring people together.

“We focus on safety, quality, access, affordability, innovation—the hallmark big picture policy issues,” Grande says. “And you want to get as many people as possible behind an idea to make it happen.”

Balancing patient privacy with technological innovation

At the Healthcare Leadership Council, Grande works to advance the industry’s highest priorities, including interoperability, which is just one—albeit important—part of the bigger picture. There’s a lot that goes into information exchange, particularly in healthcare, which involves sensitive patient data.

For Grande, privacy is top of mind.

“My job,” Grande says, “is to make sure that health information is protected, and to maintain trust in our providers.” And she does this while continuing to support and nurture innovation. After all, as Marcus says, innovation is incredibly important in healthcare.

“When was the last time somebody asked you to bring your entire list of medications?” Marcus says, in reference to a typical interaction at the point of care. Providers tend not to ask anymore. “That’s because they have it.”

Listen to the third episode of our podcast, “There’s a Better Way: Smart Talk on Healthcare and Technology,” and subscribe on your favorite streaming platform to catch future episodes.

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