Drew Madden says people, not lifeless technology, are most important element in healthcare

Drew Madden is a one-man hurricane within the healthcare IT space. The veteran healthcare IT specialist has been in the industry for his entire career, first going to work for the Epic Systems straight out of college. After stints there as well as at competitor Cerner, the quick-learning Madden had become a world-leading expert on the ins and outs of the EHR technology that drives the vast majority of the U.S. healthcare system.

But, like so many other fields that are heavily technology driven, Madden began to notice a trend. The software developers were becoming blind to the limits of their product. They were hammersmiths touting hammers as the one and only tool to be used in every project. To them, everything looked like a nail.

Madden saw differently, however. He witnesses the failings that occurred when highly sophisticated and competently designed software systems were implemented in settings where the people those systems where designed to help had no idea how to properly use them. He watched as cross-compatibility issues with electronic health records rendered some of the most complex and exquisitely designed patient management systems completely unusable due to the simple lack of understanding and properly devised protocols on the part of the end users. For Madden, the problem wasn’t software: It was the people who didn’t know how to properly use it.

As the founder of Evergreen Healthcare Partners, Madden has created a firm that is first and foremost focused on the development of human systems, not just technological ones. Madden’s novel approach is to first make sure that the ways in which the human participants in any given healthcare system are interacting with each other and with the technology upon which they rely are maximally efficient and conducive to good patient experiences. Madden believes that this is one of the crucial missing pieces to the U.S. Healthcare puzzle, which has led this country to have some of the highest healthcare costs and worst outcomes of any industrialized nation.

Drew Madden says that it is scandalous that the richest country in history has one of the worst healthcare systems in the developed world. Through Evergreen Healthcare Partners, he is determined to change that.