Forward Momentum in Healthcare needs AI
by; Russ Loignon, SVP Strategic Markets and Sales
Recently, I attended Health Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2019 in Orlando. As the nation’s leading health industry conference, HIMMS brings together the entire health ecosystem to share and exhibit the fine work that organizations are doing to contribute to improving care, treatment and health delivery. So many of the firms in attendance announced advancements. Some of these areas of advancements included patient engagement and digital health, price transparency, interoperability and data sharing as well as the consumerization of healthcare to name just a few. To me, the interesting thread through each of these areas had to do with the critical nature of managing data securely, the size and scale of data needed and the interplay between resources needed to deliver a better patient experience. Enabling these critical components will allow for more control by the patient, thus moving the patient to the center of the equation.
At HIMSS, the resounding demonstration to achieve these advancements was Artificial Intelligence (AI) by way of machine learning. Reduction of cost, improved patient outcomes and technological advancements through AI was included in nearly every presentation and exhibit booth discussion.
In order to continue this forward momentum in healthcare, technology progress, per my observation is the key accelerator. Whether it is genomic research, applications or imagery improvements, patient personalized care treatments or data analysis to make better health decisions there are tremendous advancements taking place to enable health care professionals to deliver superior care. What I found most compelling was the earnest effort of companies looking to partner and develop an extended ecosystem to more quickly create improved solutions and to provide better and faster results within the healthcare industry.
So, as we face an aging population, a greater chronic disease burden, geographic barriers to care, lack of actionable intelligence, increasing cost and shortage of healthcare professionals, the demand is there for us to make improvements. HIMSS CEO Hal Wolf noted, “Healthcare needs a renaissance, it needs to drive to reform”. HIMSS Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Steve Wretling shared that sentiment, “the challenge with data is that its all over the place – there are silos of data all over the health system. The future of digital medicine is opening up that data”.
AI is a key, that can help to address these challenges by unlocking the value inherent in that data. Protecting the data while enabling the value within it, in a cohesive collaborative manner, will bring our health system into the 21st century!