Online Health Care Database Links Government Agencies, IT Execs, Hospitals

Leadership Directories, a resource on government leaders and lobbyists for more than 40 years, has expanded its online listings into health care.

Leadership Directories, a longtime compiler of listings on government leaders, has branched out into health care with Health Focus, its first online database covering a particular industry.

Health Focus holds information on 150,000 leaders and 8,000 organizations across the U.S. health care industry, including government, hospital systems, medical schools and trade associations.

Known for its listings of government employees and lobbyists, the company was founded in 1969 as Monitor Publishing and renamed Leadership Directories in 1995. Its listings are now available in print, online, on demand and as data feeds.

Leadership Directories announced Health Focus on June 15.

Health Focus includes rankings and contact information for government agencies, health care providers, distributors, hospitals, assisted-living centers and nonprofits such as research firms and medical schools.

Listings for health care organizations will show information on revenue and budget, number of employees, affiliations, joint ventures and IT providers, along with links to social media pages on Facebook and Twitter.

For IT companies working on building HIEs (health information exchanges), or networks of interconnected EHR (electronic health record) platforms, the database provides listings on state government offices involved in those projects. It lets users expand an HIE record to see which health care facilities participate.

Transparency to comply with government mandates is one reason easy access to health care leaders is needed, according to Gretchen Teichgraeber, president and CEO of Leadership Directories. The database could help break down silos in the health care industry, she told eWEEK.

"Health care is becoming increasingly interconnected and collaborative, and this database not only allows you to know but also to see those various components that are part of one ecosystem," Teichgraeber said.

Health Focus allows users to find industry contacts such as chief medical officers, IT executives, marketing managers and purchasing directors.

A subscription to Health Focus costs $2,500 per year and $1,250 for an additional seat.

The company has added Flash-based visuals to its databases, Sue Healy, vice president of products and content for Leadership Directories, told eWEEK. This functionality allows searchers to view the relationships of one company to another using Flash animation and mouse-over link nodes.

"More recently we have been focusing on taking all of the back-end structure and taxonomy to build visually delightful experiences on the site that are Flash-based," Healy said. "Instead of coming into a hierarchical grid of taxonomy and putting a check box next to 'cancer,' because that's your subject of choice, you can click on a colorful wheel that has various subjects. It expands to show little figures of people who specialize in cancer."

A SQL Server database with Boolean searching and proprietary taxonomy allows users to search for leaders tagged within the health care field, according to Healy. A search for "purchasing" will yield results for purchasing agents, procurement workers and related purchasing titles.

"If you're looking for the chief technology officer at hospitals of a certain size, you can do that in a few clicks," Teichgraeber said.

Meanwhile, the database sends an "add/change/delete file," or updates through email on changes that have occurred in a saved search, Healy said. Users can export the file to Excel or Outlook. Health Focus also lets users add their own information to a customized file for specific details about a company.

Health Focus can also handle up to four queries at a time. Users can configure the search filter to skip health care organizations that may not list a fax number or phone number. Job seekers can also view vacant positions at hospitals, Healy noted.