NEWBERRY — Gena Driggers is stepping into a familiar position as Newberry County Memorial Hospital’s Information Technology Director, after being gone for eight years, previously living in Greenville.
Driggers is a Newberry native, currently living in Prosperity. She is a graduate of Newberry College with a degree in Business Administration.
“I have always wanted to work in a hospital. I grew up in the hospital. My mom found out on my 13th birthday that she had cancer and for the six years that she lived, I pretty much grew up in a hospital through my teenage years,” said Driggers.
Driggers started out at Palmetto Richland where she worked in accounting and said that falling into IT was actually an accident. She now has 26 years of IT experience under her belt, serving all of those years in hospitals.
“We work with all the staff, from registration to nursing and physicians, pretty much all departments in the hospital to ensure that their information systems are working and they have the functionality that they need to do their jobs and document the work that they do,” said Driggers.
With information being sent digitally this day and age, many senior patients may not know where or how to access their patient information.
“We have a volunteer that goes around and works with our in-patients as they’re discharged to try to explain the ability to access our patient portal, which will give them some information about their discharge instructions and patient education. We also try to encourage engagement of children or spouse, anybody in the family that is interested in technology and has interest in that patient as long as the patient gives them access,” said Driggers.
Driggers said that one of the challenges of her job is compliance and staying on top of rules and regulations that frequently change, but in a small hospital like Newberry that is close-knit it is much easier to work together.
“It’s really difficult to keep up with all the changes that are needed and then building all of those requirements into the system. Then we have to work with the rest of the staff and hospital to engage them to document what we need to document in order to meet the compliance and regulations,” said Driggers.
To get the staff and hospital engaged and working together, Driggers likes to incorporate two things: a meditec team, IT super users and managers who know the system and how it functions, actively engaging and meeting regularly with the team and rounding with physicians and nurses to determine what is and isn’t working well in the system and what needs to be addressed.
“I really want to continue engaging the staff outside of the IT Department, finding out what the needs are and continuing to make sure we are meeting those regulatory requirements ensuring that we have the system and tools in place that will engage the staff so we’re all working together,” said Driggers.
When she’s not working, Driggers enjoys spending time with her two teenage children.
“I can honestly say this is probably the best teamwork I’ve seen in any hospital in 26 years. The teamwork here is just amazing,” said Driggers.
Reach Kelly Duncan at 803-768-3123 ext. 1868 or on Twitter @TheNBOnews.