Founder James F. Chen Transitions to Executive Chairman of the Board
Healthcare technology pioneer DrFirst announced today that its founder, James F. Chen, has transitioned his role as chief executive officer (CEO) to G. Cameron Deemer, effective Jan. 1, 2023, and will now serve as executive chairman of the board. Deemer joined the company in 2004, initially as director of product management; a year later he became general manager, and in 2006 he was promoted to president. Chen and Deemer have led the company together for the last 16 years.
“I am honored to take this next step as CEO to continue James Chen’s legacy of innovation,” said G. Cameron Deemer, DrFirst CEO. “His commitment to creating practical solutions to complex problems while empowering healthcare providers and their patients to achieve better health will continue to inspire all of us at DrFirst. Under his leadership, DrFirst created many of the products and services that are standard in our industry today. We will continue to focus on developing intelligent medication management solutions with our deep enthusiasm for innovation and partnership.”
Chen founded DrFirst on Jan. 1, 2000, to coincide with the new millennium. Entering its 24th year, the company has won numerous prestigious awards and established itself as a healthcare technology leader for medication management. Some of its industry firsts include:
- Combining payer information and pharmacy delivery in one e-prescribing application
- Creating an embeddable e-prescribing capability for electronic health record (EHR) systems
- Developing a medication history service for acute care
- Envisioning, developing, and launching the concept of EPCS (Electronic Prescribing for Controlled Substances)
- Creating in-workflow real-time benefit checking
- Developing patented machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) services for practical, workflow-based interoperability
- Creating a patient-facing real-time medication adherence service at scale
“Over the past 18 years, Cam has been a tremendous partner to me,” said Chen. “We have worked side-by-side, leading DrFirst’s growth from a startup e-prescribing company to the world-class medication management company it is today. I am confident that DrFirst is in the right hands, with the right team in place, to continue its momentum and growth.”
Deemer has been a strong proponent of promoting interoperability in the healthcare industry by sharing clinical data between systems. Before joining DrFirst, he served as assistant vice president of product management for PCS Health Systems/AdvancePCS and led the e-prescribing and practice management product strategy for NDCHealth.
As part of the leadership succession, Anthony Brooke has been promoted to chief technology and innovation officer (CTIO). Brooke joined DrFirst in 2020 as chief innovation officer (CIO) and brings over 20 years of experience in leadership roles as an innovation change agent, technology entrepreneur, and healthcare champion. His 30-year career is punctuated by successful product launches, robust software platforms, and global leadership. As CTIO, Brooke will develop and lead DrFirst’s technology strategy, including product development, improvements, and enhancements to bring impactful innovation to healthcare.
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