Ann Polich, MD, MPH, MBA, was placed as the chief medical officer of Nebraska Health Information Initiative (NeHII) in La Vista, Nebraska, a 501(c)3 non-profit health information exchange organization that joins healthcare providers, payers, and the State of Nebraska. Designated as the statewide integrator by the governor, NeHII works with the eHealth Council and the state HIT coordinator to facilitate Health Information Exchange initiatives throughout the state in order to improve patient outcomes and reduce healthcare costs. During the course of its existence, NeHII has connected more than 3.5 million patients, providers, and institutions; connected 70% of acute care in Nebraska; and provisioned access and provided training to over 10,000 clinicians. NeHII is certified as a Qualified Clinical Data Registry and as a Qualified Entity, and is the first HIE in the nation to pursue NCQA certification and achieve HEDIS measure certification. In addition, Dr. Polich will serve as the inaugural executive medical director of the Nebraska Healthcare Collaborative (NHC), designed to focus on improving and transforming the health of the state's population – as well as its economic wellbeing – through research and data.
In her dual role, Dr. Polich will be responsible for establishing an infrastructure of partners and peers collectively focused on improving the health of all populations and reducing cost by utilizing data, health information technology, and collaboration across a diversity of stakeholders within the healthcare ecosystem. She will be a member of NeHII's senior leadership team, with responsibility for providing vision, strategic direction, and oversight to NeHII's shift to a focus on quality and value-based care, and will serve as the senior medical advisor to NeHII and its subsidiaries, with the goal of reducing the burden of data and regulatory reporting, growing the core and ancillary businesses, modernization, and expanding services and enhancements.
Dr. Polich comes to NeHII from Nebraska Methodist Health System, where she served as vice president for quality, performance improvement, safety, population health, and episode-based payment initiatives. In this capacity, she developed a system-wide population health program and position to support value-based care, as well as a system-wide strategy to become a high-reliability organization. Dr. Polich focused on physician excellence and professional practice, with evaluations bolstered by objective, relevant data, and partnered with the University of Nebraska's math department to create a data analytics internship designed to improve healthcare quality and attain the health system's strategic goal of becoming a data-driven organization.
Previously, Dr. Polich served as the associate chief of staff for patient safety with the Omaha Veterans Administration Medical Center and as an associate professor at Creighton University, where she created the second VA chief resident in quality and patient safety position in the United States. She began her career as a practicing physician, opening her own practice in which she implemented the first electronic medical record in the state of Kansas. Dr. Polich holds a bachelor's degree in biology and French from Rockhurst University, an MD and Master of Public Health from the University of Kansas School of Medicine, and an MBA in healthcare informatics from Nebraska Methodist College.