Irvine, California-based UCI Health this week announced the promotion of Julie Eastman, RN, who will serve as the health system’s new chief information officer.
WHY IT MATTERS
Eastman, who started the job on July 24, has deep expertise in both nursing and information technology, and UCI officials noted her “strong leadership skills and a forward-thinking vision that will shape the future of the technology infrastructure at UCI Health.”
For the past year and half, Eastman served as associate CIO at UCI. With her new role, she’ll take the reins from Scott Joslyn – who’ll now concentrate fully on his job as chief innovation officer at the health system.
As CIO, Eastman will be tasked with aligning UCI’s information technology investments with its larger business and strategic goals. She’ll manage and maintain the health system’s IT infrastructure and oversee many projects and initiatives.
She’ll also lead several departments across the IT teams, focused on application delivery and support, clinical informatics, telecommunications and biomedical engineering, according to UCI leaders.
“Julie’s unique combination of nursing and IT experience, leadership qualities, and vision stood out, making her the ideal choice for this crucial role,” said UCI Health CEO Chad T. Lefteris in a statement. “Her strategic direction will aid us in integrating the latest technology to streamline our operations and uphold our commitment to patient care excellence.”
Since beginning her career as a critical care nurse, Eastman has held a variety of technology leadership roles in California, including executive director of information services at CHOC Children’s and VP of information services at MemorialCare Health.
THE LARGER TREND
Despite the clear value of having a nursing informatics expert in the role, nurse CIOs are still a rarity in healthcare.
Earlier this month, Healthcare IT News spoke with Jung In Park – coincidentally, a professor at the UCI’s School of Nursing – who spoke about some of the technology opportunities for the nursing workforce, especially the use of artificial intelligence to streamline workflows and enhance care delivery in RNs’ day-to-day practice.
See also these two interviews from HIMSS23 this past April: How to make IT and informatics work better for nurses and Technology tips for boosting the nursing workforce.
ON THE RECORD
“I am excited to assume the CIO position at UCI Health and to continue driving our organization’s technology solution delivery excellence,” said Eastman in a statement. “I am deeply committed to furthering our mission and look forward to collaborating more broadly with our talented teams and esteemed partners to continue to deliver exceptional, patient-centric solutions that redefine healthcare in the consumer digital age.”
Before joining UCI Health, Eastman held the position of executive director for Information Services at CHOC Children’s. Starting her career in critical care nursing, she possesses a unique understanding of the intersection of healthcare and technology.
Mike Miliard is executive editor of Healthcare IT News
Email the writer: [email protected]
Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS publication.