Randall Gaboriault MHCDS ‘14
Chief Information Officer; Senior Vice President, Innovation and Strategic Development, Christiana Care Health System
When Randall Gaboriault left his job as an executive with a large medical device manufacturer to work for a hospital system in 2010, he quickly saw how different management practices were.
“I was blown away at how fragmented care delivery was,” he says. “What happened with each patient varied by what the doctor’s or nurse's preferences were. I thought this was incredible—in manufacturing and engineering you try to drive variation out of your process.”
There were other aspects he found surprising. “One department contributes to the bottom line, but another department loses 30 percent,” he says. “You’d ask people, Why is that? And they’d have no answer.”
Now a vice president and chief information officer for Christiana Care Health System, the nation’s 17th largest hospital by admissions, Gaboriault is looking for new management strategies through Dartmouth's Master of Health Care Delivery Science program.
One of his goals is to learn how to better integrate medical information across hospital departments. An example of the problems he says hospitals face is illustrated by that of the diabetic patient who has various medical records kept independently by a series of health care providers—a primary care physician, an endocrinologist, an ophthalmologist, a dietician, and a podiatrist. “Who is the integrator of all this medical information? It’s the patient himself," he says. "There’s no organized mechanism to present the doctor with the big picture.” That has to change, he says.
Balancing study with family and a full-time job as a hospital executive isn’t easy, but Gaboriault says the effort is worth it.
“I can be in a meeting seven minutes before lecture starts, walk out of the meeting, fire-up an iPad or laptop, and attend a live lecture,” he says. “The workload is rigorous and intense—everybody has the same reaction: wow!"
"But we’re all committed, he adds, "because the quality of the experience is so incredible.”