Economic cluster hotspots featured at event in nation’s Capitol
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., September 14, 2010 — What do dishwashers and medical records have in common? They were both revolutionized by digital technology through the genius of Indiana entrepreneur Sam Regenstrief, who transformed the appliance industry by integrating digital controls into dishwashers. In the late 1960’s, Mr. Regenstrief established a charitable foundation, the Regenstrief Foundation, and the Regenstrief Institute at Indiana University to research and apply the same idea to the healthcare sector – allowing digital information to transform the delivery of healthcare by tracking and storing patient information via electronic networks. Forty years later, the Central Indiana region is home to the most advanced and largest health information technology (HIT) cluster in the United States.
Through concrete examples involving tangible successes in the Health IT, medical device, wireless medical technology and vaccine development arenas, BioCrossroads, BioEnterprise (Cleveland), CONNECT (San Diego) and the Georgia Research Alliance will provide critical insights on what is working in their respective regions at an event in Washington D.C. today.
David Johnson, president and CEO of BioCrossroads, along with the other leaders of those prominent regional development organizations will share examples of regional, sector-based initiatives that are producing measureable achievement – innovative technologies, business startups and jobs – in America’s 21st-century communities.
Johnson will focus on the progression of health IT and the current achievements of the Indiana Health Information Exchange (IHIE), America’s largest and one of the most successful health information exchange networks. IHIE was recently designated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as one of 17 national “Beacon Communities” for the advancement of better health outcomes through the use of better clinical information. Overall, Indiana has received over $50 million in federal funding for the advancement of health information technology under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
“The U.S. has an increased focus on strategic regional cluster initiatives because these efforts spring from genuine, local strengths to spur job, company, and investment growth. These initiatives can’t be started from scratch. You have to have strong assets and resources, a foundation of corporate, academic, and philanthropic partners, and a strategic plan to help them grow,” said Johnson. “Central Indiana’s health information technology cluster is now a national leader as a result of the unprecedented collaboration among several organizations and an early vision of the promise of digital healthcare to improve health.”
BioCrossroads (www.biocrossroads.com) is Indiana’s initiative to grow, advance and invest in the life sciences, a public-private collaboration that supports the region’s existing research and corporate strengths while encouraging new business development. BioCrossroads provides money and support to life sciences businesses, launches new life sciences enterprises (Indiana Health Information Exchange, Fairbanks Institute for Healthy Communities, BioCrossroadsLINX, and Datalys Center), expands collaboration and partnerships among Indiana’s life science institutions, promotes science education and markets Indiana’s life sciences industry.