Blog-terview: Anita Samarth

Following my interview of Wendy Sue Swanson, MD, I wanted to interview Anita Samarth  ( @anitasamarth )as another person whose experience and work I admire.

I met Anita fairly soon after I came to Washington, DC, through an introduction from our mutual colleague, Carol Cain, PhD, and we have been collaborating in some form ever since (to give you a sense of Anita’s #epicenter spirit, look at this photograph).

Anita’s now the President and Co-Founder of Clinovations Creative Health Solutions ( @clinovations ) and in my opinion has valuable insights about health information technology from a national perspective, being a business owner in this environment, acquiring and promoting talent, and about the #epicenter in general.

I’ve been pondering what a “World According to Anita” post would have in it, but creating a title is getting ahead of ourselves…..

Anita’s agreed to do this in interview format to allow others to participate and her to fit this into her schedule, so first question is below, and then we’ll continue in the comments. Feel free to insert/add your ideas thoughts as we go.

First question:

Anita, how did you get here – both to Washington, DC and Health Information Technology? Tell us about your journey and what you’re doing now.

(Go to the comments to see this unfold)

5 Replies to “Blog-terview: Anita Samarth”

  1. Hi Ted,

    Good to see Anita being interviewed. I remember the excellent work she did when our paths crossed a few years ago, but haven't heard much about her current work. I take it this blog-terview will unfold over a few days?

    David

  2. David,

    Glad you are as enthusiastic as I am about Anita! To answer your question, yes, this interview will happen in the comments, and by virtue of your comment, you can get notified of each addition, feel free to ask any questions yourself as Anita engages with us,

    Ted

  3. Hi Ted (and Dave and Pallav too!) – I always knew I wanted to work in the intersection of health care and technology – even as far back as high school. Although the journey definitely wasn’t planned. Moving to DC was an easy transition from college nearby in Baltimore, at Johns Hopkins. My formal education includes degrees in Biomedical Engineering and Electrical & Computer Engineering, but I realized quickly that working in research labs or engineering companies wasn’t for me. I’m more of a “people person” than those two environments can foster. I was immediately drawn to consulting – it seemed to present the perfect intersection of industry, technology, and business strategy – and I really liked the well-rounded people I met. I still agree with that assessment.

    I started out of college with Accenture, then First Consulting Group, and then led the clinical consulting practice at GE. After being on the road for over 10 years at health systems across the country, I wanted to stay closer to home in DC and get involved in the national HIT agenda and policy. Since 2005, I’ve spent most of my time on publicly funded HIT projects with AHRQ, CCHIT, and ONC – first through the eHealth Initiative, and more recently via Clinovations.

    Trenor Williams and I ran into each other at a conference in DC a few years ago – I had met Trenor years ago when I was at GE, and had been impressed with him. We soon started collaborating, and when the time was right, we started Clinovations.

    At Clinovations, I lead our public and non-profit sector activities, but still do some work in the private/commercial and consumer sector which keeps me sane! My current projects are: Technical Assistance Director for eHealthDC, DC’s Regional Extension Center; HIE Technical Assistance for ONC; and a PHR project.

  4. Anita,

    Yes, you are definitely a people person, one with a lot of optimism and enthusiasm! From leading the consultant practice at GE to all of your experience with the public sector, it's interesting to get your take via the next two questions:

    2. What excites you most about what is happening around Health Information Technology today?

    And ( I have to ask this companion question)

    3. What excites you the least about what is happening around Health Information Technology today? (put another way, what would worry you the most?)

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