Spotlight: How Helen Figge helps apply IT to management

MPWHIT winner contributes a variety of talents to support the industry.

Health Data Management has announced the honorees in its program to recognize the Most Powerful Women in Healthcare IT. All will be recognized at our event May 12 in Boston. In leading up to that event, HDM editors are highlighting some of the honorees—here, we feature Helen Figge, who is senior vice president of global strategic development for LumiraDx USA.

Name: Helen Figge

Title: Senior Vice President, Global Strategic Development

Organization: LumiraDx USA, Inc. Waltham, Mass.

Years in HIT: 12 years exclusively in healthcare IT with extensive prior experiences in the healthcare field

Previous roles:
  • Vice President, Global Clinical Integrations Accountable Care Solutions, Alere, Inc., 2013-2014
  • Director, Clinical Integrations, Alere, Inc., 2013
  • Senior Director, Career Services, Professional Development, HIMSS, 2011-2013
  • Director, Client Office (last held position), Allscripts, 2008-2011
  • IT Consultant, HIXNY, 2007-2008
  • Vice President, Strategic Solutions (last held position), AmerisourceBergen, 2004-2007
  • Manager, Clinical Operations, St. Peter’s Health Partners, 1996-2004

Current job responsibilities:
At LumiraDx, Figge is responsible for facilitating healthcare management concepts using global healthcare technology solution portfolios to support best practices and community relations while expanding the company’s footprint. She cultivates healthcare relationships with her strategic vision in the areas of health IT and outcomes improvement. Her writings, presentations and business development activities help to shape, design and support healthcare management programs under various governmental healthcare reform initiatives, on a national and international level.

Primary achievements:
  • Helped to create unique patient engagement opportunities and healthcare best practices that support LumiraDx’s health IT solution sets, ultimately facilitating the empowerment and education of healthcare consumers.
  • Influences end users on critical healthcare issues by understanding, educating and authoring white papers, columns, blog pieces and social media content.
  • Works to accelerate the adoption of healthcare management solutions by serving on boards and committees for a number of influential organizations, including HIMSS, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME), the Sullivan Institute and WEDI, the State University of New York’s School of Public Health and Global Institute for Health and Human Rights, The Sullivan Institute and the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI).

Impact on HIT:
Figge strives to encourage critical thinking of current health IT industry trends. As a talented writer and pharmacist by trade, Figge authors, presents and voices her opinions on critical healthcare issues through various social media venues as well as extensive committee involvement, helping to shape the way healthcare is practiced nationally and internationally. She has helped educate thousands of healthcare executives, leaders and clinicians about the changes needed to improve the healthcare industry. As a volunteer board and committee member for HIMSS, CHIME, WEDI and other organizations that serve national and international platforms, Figge actively works to improve healthcare IT standards and increase user adoption and awareness on how best to use healthcare technology solutions to improve health.

Figge continually seeks new opportunities to engage patients through healthcare management solutions. Toward this end, she helped create a nationally recognized program that supports clinical adoption of LumiraDx’s health IT solutions, while also targeting the educational needs of patient populations, such as those suffering from obesity, diabetes and cardiac conditions. These programs have been used by several national and international clients.

Figge strives to raise awareness of women’s opportunities in healthcare management. She is a mentor to those in her workplace as well as in other organizations where she volunteers. She is eager to mentor those who are new to the industry and looking for career guidance. She created the HIMSS Career Services Center before returning to industry and has created unique mentorship programs providing educational sessions for employees, providing career guidance and identifying strategies for achieving goals and career milestones. Figge creates awareness about the healthcare environment, encouraging all to make a difference in the lives touched by the technologies and solutions on the healthcare market today.

Her philosophy:
“I always want to leave a place better than how I found it and always try to do the right thing regardless of professional or personal consequences. I always try to lead by example, and take on professional tasks many never want. If I didn’t understand something, I learned how to do it first hand.”

Her thoughts on the role of technology:
“I think technologies in healthcare should be viewed as empowerments toward a common good and never used as a replacement for professionals practicing their art.”

Her career advice:
“I think gender should not define career accomplishments. My best career advice is to seek out mentors you can learn from and have skills you want to emulate. In my career, I sought out those I admired, learned from the best in their profession and now many have become great friends and colleagues. And every career circumstance that I encountered or endured has made me the person I am today. A heart-felt thanks goes out to those individuals whose path I have crossed in my career because they made me the person I am today.”

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