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What does it take for a physician to become a health information technology entrepreneur?
"I liked both medicine and computers growing up, so I studied Biomedical engineering at the University of Pennsylvania, where I wound up programming and working with a variety of PhDs and MDs.


When I went to the University of Illinois College of Medicine, I was fortunate to have a mentor in Arthur Elstein, PhD, who had founded the Society for Medical Decision Making and created our med school's initial Informatics Department.  I became his research assistant, worked on a variety of informatics projects and realized that I wanted this to be part of my career. 


In addition to being a primary care physician, I accumulated a diverse set of technology and business experiences, from serving as the Medical Director of IT for a large primary group to starting a consulting company to serving as the Chief Medical Officer for two publicly traded companies in the IT space. Then in 2008, I was able to merge my technology and innovation passions when I received philanthropic funding to start the Szollosi Healthcare Innovation Program at Northwestern, which allowed me to learn a whole new skill set of human-centered design thinking skills and understanding.


Over the years, I have also advised a number of startups, but eventually realized that to make the biggest impact (and have the most fun), I should be starting companies myself.  I knew I could bring an interesting variety of real world clinical, IT, Innovation and business skills to certain healthcare problems, but quickly learned that the key to success is always finding great people that can execute on a vision… and I've been very fortunate in finding the right people with which to partner."

Adapted and updated from an interview published in Healthcare Innovation News. Full Interview and Bonus Material at this DrLyle Blog Post

Career Insights 

KeyCare is a new type of virtual care partner - we offer health systems access to a tech-enabled virtual care team to supplement their own workforce and expand virtual care options for their patients via their own front door. We do this by staffing Virtualists on our  telehealth-optimized instance of Epic and connecting to a health system via Epic's built-in interoperability functionality.  This article provides more background.


Northwestern Medicine (NM)

Northwestern Medicine is a multi-hospital integrated health system with a top 10 academic medical center at its core. It serves a wide area across Chicagoland and currently includes 8 hospitals, over 100 outpatient clinics, over 4,000 employed physicians, and over $5 billion in revenue.   


The Szollosi Healthcare Innovation Program (SHIP)

Szollosi Healthcare Innovation Program is a charitable endeavor with a mission to use creative thinking and diverse technologies to produce a better healthcare experience for patients, physicians, and others associated with their care. Our vision is to develop, test and use innovative solutions within the real world of Northwestern Memorial HealthCare, and then spread these ideas and products across the world.  


OneView Healthcare

OneView Healthcare is a market leading provider of innovative patient engagement and clinical workflow technology solutions to healthcare facilities in the USA and across the globe.  Visit


healthfinch creates workflow automation solutions to simplify, automate and delegate the routine work of physicians - enabling everyone on the healthcare team to work to the top of their license.  The solution's platform is cloud-based software which integrates with EMR systems to enable medical groups to share the care across a team in a way that improves both efficiency and quality.  The result is software that makes life easier for doctors and better for patients at the same time.  healthfinch had a successful exit to Health Catalyst in 2020. 


Dr. Berkowitz also spent several years as the Chief Medical Officer and EVP of Product Strategy for MDLIVE, one of the nation's largest telehealth medical groups, where he helped lead operations, product and strategy.  He helped them scale significantly which led to an eventual exit in 2021 to Cigna's Evernorth division. 

Career Insights
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