Corey Gaarde, principal, project executive, IMEG (Naperville, Ill.)

As a principal and project executive at IMEG, Corey Gaarde leads the Healthcare Information Technology (HIT) Advisory Services team and strategically aligns HIT to the collaborative design process.

With 20-plus years of experience in HIT, his work focuses on strategic planning and execution of advanced solutions pertaining to facility design and transformation, clinical collaboration and communication, patient/family engagement, clinical workflow, telemedicine, and medical device integration.

His goal is to ensure that the voices of patients, their families, and care team members are heard so that HIT meets their experiential needs and the owner’s goals.

In his role, Gaarde is known for pushing the traditional design process by encouraging clients to consider what might be possible through HIT while aligning to the overall design schedule and budget.

For example, he recently worked with a pediatrics campus to map the journey of a patient, the family, and care team members and envision a multitude of HIT applications for the proposed new facilities. Ideas included using artificial intelligence (AI) and mixed reality to inform, soothe, and entertain pediatric patients and their families and improve their experience via technology.

Possible applications included outfitting patients with virtual reality goggles so they can virtually step into their body and point out how and where they feel symptoms. Another idea is using smart glasses to map a patient’s route to his or her room and personalize the artwork they “see” on the lobby walls along the way.

Overall, Gaarde helps clients integrate “what ifs” into the design early on, so the facility’s technology is future-ready when it opens.

He’s also passionate about improving guidelines for the design and construction of healthcare facilities, which led to his recent involvement with The Center for Health Design’s Environmental Standards Council.

Meanwhile, he also shares his knowledge during conference presentations, blog posts, podcast appearances, and co-authoring IMEG executive guides, including “Enhancing the Quadruple Aim through Data-Driven Decisions in the Built Environment.”

His participation with associations—from the Nursing Institute for Healthcare Design to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS)—further demonstrates his commitment to transforming the patient, family, and caregiver experience by leveraging technology by design.

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