UK: Out Of HIMSS 2018: Top 5 Takeaways

Last Updated: 28 March 2018
Article by Ann-Marie Mekhail

The March 2018 Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) annual conference in Las Vegas provided a wealth of insight into the products, investments, and innovations hitting the healthcare industry. The convention included over 1000 exhibitors, from global tech giants and health focussed incumbents, to numerous academic and research centres, healthcare investors, incubators, and start-up companies. As a doctor working in management consulting, I enjoyed my first experience of HIMSS and came away with some valuable ideas and insights, including my top five takeaways which I highlight below.

1. Interoperable electronic health records and devices

The move from paper to electronic health records has been one of the biggest generational shifts in the delivery of healthcare. The adoption of electronic health records enables clearer note taking, easier record searches, more accurate coding, and the ability to review patient records without being at their bedside. However, to date, the lack of transparency and interoperability between systems has led to both patient and provider frustration. Information has to be recorded multiple times over as patients move between neighbouring healthcare providers.

Health Level Seven International was founded in 1987 to produce a set of international standards (HL7) for transfer of clinical and health administrative data between software applications by various healthcare providers.1 Since then, the standards have undergone a number of iterations and improvements and have been widely adopted as international health informatics good practice. The HL7 standard has allowed for the exchange of information across hospital departments, providers and geographies. More recently, HL7 has produced the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR), an evolution of HL7 intended to further support interoperability capability.2 This is leading to the development of system agnostic patient record software, healthcare apps, and medical devices, enabling providers to share and aggregate data across organisations and geographies and enabling the development of population health management (PHM) solutions. Indeed, PHM solutions are attracting a lot of serious attention from healthcare providers wishing to move away from the break-fix model of healthcare and proactively manage the health of their patients in the future.

2. Patients owning their health reports and wellbeing

Traditionally, electronic health records, and the data therein, have been the domain of healthcare providers. Patients can request their own data, but this is not actively encouraged, and the process is time consuming and difficult for both patients and providers. Electronic patient records are held by the hospital as a record of an admission instance rather than a patient instance. Metaphorically, this is akin to sorting emails by which room one is in when an email is sent, rather than by who is sending or receiving the email. This hinders record interoperability, leads to fragmentation of records related to a single event in the patient's care history, is disempowering for the patient, impedes patient education, and causes issues in data transfer, as information is assigned to episodes rather than patients. A number of players have come into the market intending to reverse this model by putting the record in the hands of the patient and allowing them to choose what information to release to providers.

3. Augmented/virtual reality and telemedicine enabling remote treatment and learning

Remote healthcare provision originated in Australia, where two-way radio systems were set up to provide care to remote areas. By the middle of the 1900's NASA had made significant advances on this concept as a result of needing medical care and medical research on space flights. However, it is only recently, with rising health demand and improvements in secure conferencing software functionality, that the delivery of satellite medicine has gained significant traction. Pilot studies in particular specialities in several countries have demonstrated increased patient throughput, increased patient satisfaction, and reduced patient and provider cost,3 and in certain settings can demonstrate similar standards of care.4

Augmented and virtual reality provide further opportunities to improve medical training, patient education, and telemedicine. Indeed, ventures to support medical training are enabling medical students globally to learn surgical procedures remotely using live-streaming video glasses, and patient education has been facilitated by curated content production using virtual reality. Telemedicine capability is being enhanced by devices such as the HoloLens, a holographic computer and head-mounted display which allows interaction with holograms.

4. Data visualisations driving intuitive insights for healthcare professionals and patients

Medical record keeping has its roots in either handwritten paper charts or unwieldy database structures. For quality medical care, the accessibility of data is as important as the existence of the data. All patient interactions involve hundreds of decisions by care providers. To make good decisions, providers need access to clear snapshots of relevant patient information at a glance.

However, as enterprise software for health informatics has traditionally required higher upfront investment and therefore much lower churn, the industry has generally been less motivated or incentivised to respond rapidly to user preferences. To date, the software used has been focussed more on product functionality than product design. Nonetheless, as competition increases amongst medical informatics companies, medical software is adopting the principles of elegant and simple design from the consumer software industry. This includes techniques such as iconography, colour signalling, and shadowing. Patient information displayed in an easy to interpret dashboard can speed up medical workflows, reduce the risk of 'system blindness', with increasing evidence that this is helping to improve patient outcomes.5 

5. Predictive analytics enabling more efficient diagnostic pathways

No technology blog would be complete without referencing technologies such as predictive analytics and machine learning. Healthcare's progress to digitisation, codification, and advanced natural language processing, together with cloud computing, have created enormous datasets. Ways of predicting outcomes based on data range from simple statistical stratification, segmenting patients by risk category, to machine learning algorithms such as very complex artificial recurrent neural networks. These techniques have been augmented by the development of machine vision using graphics processing units, allowing us to convert unstructured data formats (pictures) into structured data. This is particularly relevant to medicine, given that a significant proportion of our diagnoses is based on radiological imaging.

Predictive analytics and machine learning have implications for traditional research methods, diagnostics, precision medicine, and population health interventions. Most products in the market currently only focus on triaging patient risk. However, numerous companies are working to develop diagnostic and prognostic products which impact the roles of healthcare providers in the near future.

Moving forward

It is an exciting time for digital transformation in healthcare, with a lot of opportunities to redesign the model of delivery by fully utilising the stored information available to us and by working to empower the patient to be in charge of their well-being. For healthcare providers, the HIMMS conference offers valuable insight into understanding how the health technology landscape is developing and allows organisations to choose technology partners aligned to their goals. Moving forward, healthcare organisations need to work with companies who put carers and patients at the top of their priority list and approach healthcare in a collaborative manner. Only by doing this, and by working with clinicians in change management transformation, will the healthcare industry be able to move towards a service that provides seamless interoperability, efficiency, and value that focuses on carer and patient experiences.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
 
In association with
Related Topics
 
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
 
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.

Disclaimer

The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.

General

Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions