We recently shared some exciting news: We’re expanding our diverse list of solutions and launching a Cerner Solutions business line.
By growing our Cerner offerings, we’re following through on our maxim, “Listen.” We’re listening to the requests we’ve received over the years to offer additional support for your Cerner systems. And we’re so pleased to finally be able to help you address all your Cerner-related needs.
Behind-the-scenes, our team has been hard at work to deliver a Cerner practice that’s built the Nordic way – using the same proven formula of providing the highest quality consultants and meaningful partnerships. One of the leaders who’s been instrumental in helping us launch our Cerner Solutions is Mary Pat Fralick, our executive advisor and a 30-year health IT veteran.
Mary Pat has spent her career working to ensure healthcare organizations successfully achieve their goals of positive patient care and safety. Throughout this time she's been an entrepreneur, helping companies, such as DARCA, CTG, and Vitalize Consulting Solutions scale by growing their business lines organically and through M&A.
The heart of her career has always been in implementing and improving EHR systems, while keeping patients at the center of these enhancements. As we look to grow our Cerner offerings, we’re fortunate to be able to lean on her deep expertise and industry knowledge.
We recently sat down with Mary Pat to discuss her health IT experience, her vision for Nordic’s Cerner Solutions, and some of the biggest challenges/opportunities she sees for our Cerner client partners. She even shared some facts people may not know about her, including her passion for hockey, giving back to her community, and cooking (Hint: She makes a mean mushroom bisque!).
Read on to learn more about Mary Pat.
1. What does life look like outside of health IT?
I’ve been married almost 30 years and have three children, ages 27, 24, and 19. My kids have mostly left home, so now I have four dogs – three labs and a Yorkie. As a proud hockey mom since my oldest was eight years old, I’ve had the opportunity to travel the country supporting my children’s teams. I love the beach, and I love cooking – I once placed second in a cooking competition for the Food Network. Check out my Mushroom Bisque recipe.
I’m proud to be a trustee for Upland Country Day School, where our mission is to serve children with strong academics and a nurturing environment. I also serve as the treasurer for the MidAtlantic Women’s Hockey Association in the pursuit of providing opportunities for girls and women to learn and enjoy ice hockey.
2. Why are you excited to be part of Nordic?
When I co-founded Vitalize Consulting Solutions with Danny Arnold in 2002, our mission was to be the best place to work in health IT consulting. We figured that if we treated people well, compensated fairly, valued and recognized good work, the best consultants would want to work for us. It turns out, we were right. That’s why I am so excited about Nordic. Nordic is that employer today. I still hear from Vitalize consultants who say, “It was the best place I’ve ever worked.” I believe Nordic affords the same opportunity for home office employees and consultants. Being engaged with a team that emphasizes the importance of a positive and productive culture is essential for me.
3. What are you hearing from customers as far as the most significant challenges they're facing with their Cerner projects?
Cerner’s customers are facing the same challenges as customers of other HIT vendors: interoperability, physician adoption, and leveraging AI and data analytics, to name a few. Cerner clients also have some uncertainty related to the company’s revenue cycle direction and longer-term plans for the products that originated with Siemens. Additionally, the change in leadership and board composition have created some ambiguity, which, I believe, has impacted enterprise healthcare leaders during their system selection decisions.
Above all else, though, Cerner is a strongly run company that will surely emerge from these challenges stronger than before. We see this as an opportune time to expand with them into the market.
4. What do we plan to bring to the market that isn't there currently?
Many small and large firms have similar offerings as Nordic. What sets us apart is our culture. Our culture centers around 11 maxims, which are guiding principles for everyone who works at Nordic. Having a defined, central touchstone attracts like-minded people. It is empowering when you know everyone at the table believes in the guiding principles that align with your personal beliefs. Our clients trust us and believe in our partnership because they know our consultants bring those principles to the job site. My favorite maxim is: Make it about ‘we,’ because success hinges on an effective team where individuals can see the big picture beyond what impacts themselves personally.
5. Where do you see this practice expanding in the future?
To start we will be engaged with more staff augmentation projects. I anticipate that very quickly the practice will be positioned to assist Cerner Millennium and Cerner Siemens/Soarian clients with legacy support and optimization projects. The longer-term, real opportunity for Nordic is to adapt its managed services offering, which Nordic successfully provides to Epic clients, to the Cerner space. There will be opportunities to implement revenue cycle and ambulatory as well. As I mentioned in our press release, PowerChart is a proven solution, but adoption is just half of Cerner EHR clients.
6. Nordic recently launched an ERP practice as well. How do these two new practices connect?
Both ERPs and EHRs are large, complex systems. A collaborative effort is necessary for healthcare organizations to experience the real benefits that both systems offer. The systems need to integrate so that they can drive business decisions grounded in commonly defined goals and objectives. Nordic’s ERP practice will assist Epic and Cerner clients as they approach these complex projects.
Interested in learning more about our Cerner Solutions? Check out our Cerner Solutions page and Cerner openings. And if you’re looking for a partner to help guide you through your Cerner project, please give us a call. We can set up a time to listen to your needs and develop a strategy that helps you meet your organization’s performance goals.