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Intel Healthcare IT

46 Posts authored by: jamalloy


Mixing old and new technologies is a pain point for many healthcare CIOs. Recently, we caught up with Jeff Fleming, Vice President Americas for Carestream, who talked about legacy healthcare enterprise solutions and the tough choices CIOs need to make about next steps: do they rip out and replace, or keep components intact and expand more benefits to patient and clinical information? Hear what he has to say in the above video and share your thoughts.


What are you doing with your legacy healthcare solutions?


At HIMSS14, infrastructure was on the minds of many attendees. In the above video, AirStrip CEO Alan Portela talks about how healthcare organizations can economically optimize technology infrastructures while still delivering performance. One way is to utilize companies like AirStrip as aggregators of information from electronic medical records and devices to efficiently update existing systems.


Watch the video and let us know what questions you have about building or updating health IT infrastructures.

When it comes to personalized medicine, speed can make all the difference in the world for patients. That’s what makes today’s announcement that Intel Corporation and the Broad Institute have dramatically improved the time it takes to analyze genetic information and detect genetic variants associated with medical conditions so exciting.


By optimizing the latest version of the Broad’s Genome Analysis Toolkit (GATK) 3.1 for Intel® Advanced Vector Extensions (Intel® AVX) in Intel® Xeon servers, Intel and the Broad were able to achieve three to five times overall improvement in variant discovery to meet the challenges of research, and accelerate discovery.


These improvements enable a whole genome to now be processed in one day instead of three. Imagine that you were a patient waiting for results. Cutting wait times by two-thirds is a huge step in the right direction for improving care and outcomes using technology.


Together with new methods, GATK 3.1 can now analyze datasets consisting of tens of thousands of DNA samples, 100 times what was previously achievable. The improved speed for variant analysis in large association studies will help enable new medical discoveries for conditions such as cancer, neurodegenerative disorders, and cardiovascular disease that were never before possible.


What’s the bottom line? Intel and the Broad are improving the quality and performance of the whole GATK pipeline in order to benefit patients worldwide. The computational bottlenecks that stand in the way of scientific discovery are being solved, and that will make personalized medicine a reality for everyone.


Read more from the Broad about its take on today’s announcement.


What questions do you have about GATK or personalized medicine?


Learn more about GATK 3.1 for academic, noncommercial use or for commercial uses.


Thanks to technology, patients are becoming more engaged with their own healthcare. Wearable devices are just one way that patients are helping to provide more data about themselves and their conditions.


To learn more about this trend and find out what’s next with wearables, Intel Health and Life Sciences General Manager Eric Dishman recently sat down with Gunnar Trommer, Ph. D., Vice President, Marketing and Business Development at Sotera Wireless, to discuss the company’s new wearable form factor that measures vital signs and transmits the data wirelessly to a physician and into an EMR.


The device is able to continuously monitor blood pressure readings and provide ICU-level diagnostics. In the above video, Gunnar shares his insights on wearable technology and how it can improve patient outcomes.


Watch the conversation and let me know what questions you have about wearables and the future of patient participation in healthcare data.

As HIMSS14 approaches in a few days, we are sharing a pre-show guest blog series from health IT industry experts on trends you can expect to hear about at the event. Below is a guest contribution from Jean Cleghorn, Private Practice & Physician Healthcare Technology Liaison at HP.


These days, buzzwords like “interoperability” and “patient engagement” have taken the healthcare industry by storm and it’s become harder to determine what solutions will actually drive your business forward. Whether you are a doctor or an administrator, you want to make sure you have access to all patient information and ensure patients are fully informed about their treatment plans so that hospital resources are being maximized. So how does technology play a role in transforming the continuum of care and how can CIOs help make the best decisions for their business?


The healthcare industry has historically lagged behind other industries in its adoption of emerging technology trends. That’s no longer the case. New technologies like cloud and mobile-enabled healthcare have empowered CIOs to transform their hospitals, creating a better environment for patients and doctors alike.


Access to data at any time, anywhere in the hospital, is a critical concern for any CIO, and technology like EHRs for all patient information is leading to improved patient care and efficiency for administrators and caregivers. Even with the realization that the future of health IT is moving towards a more streamlined, “patient first” approach, CIOs may not always feel confident in their abilities to protect and share all of that sensitive information across networks connecting hospitals, doctors, specialists and medical researchers. But implementing technologies doesn’t have to be so difficult, and in the end, it’s worth the effort. For example, tablets and PCs can provide access to EMRs, thin client and print solutions can streamline workflow, and workstations provide the performance and reliability required for hospitals.


Next week at HIMSS 2014, HP is demonstrating how customers like Jump and OSF HealthCare are using HP technologies powered by Intel to transform the continuum of patient care. As you can see in the video below, technology from tablets to thin clients can be used to help update vital patient statistics, manage automated workflows that help doctors respond quickly, and ensure that full medical histories are at doctors’ fingertips. Check it out for more best practice tips.



You can see the technology in action at HIMSS at HP booth #1949.


What questions do you have?

As HIMSS14 approaches next week, we are sharing a pre-show guest blog series from health IT industry experts on trends you can expect to hear about at the event. Below is a guest contribution from Cristine Kao, Carestream’s Global Marketing Director for Healthcare Information Solutions.


Developing and implementing an enterprise data management strategy that includes the ability to archive, manage and access images and data is essential for healthcare providers of all sizes. Its benefits include enhanced quality of care and a patient-centric workflow—along with cost savings created by consolidated data storage and streamlined distribution.


The mushrooming amount of clinical data generated during the course of patient care is both a blessing and a curse. Imaging exams, laboratory results, specialized cardiology and oncology studies and other procedures all provide vital information that can enhance diagnosis and treatment. The challenge is managing the hundreds of millions of medical imaging procedures produced in the U.S. every year.    


Enabling access to patient data when and where it’s needed remains a fundamental hurdle for healthcare IT professionals. A recent study shows that more than half of clinical data are archived in proprietary systems and are not part of the overall patient record.


It’s not feasible to eliminate all departmental systems—but it is possible to tap into this data by establishing a vendor-neutral archive and a zero footprint viewer that: 1) Allows healthcare IT staffs to streamline the management of clinical data and 2) Enables rapid, secure access to patient imaging data by authorized users, including patients themselves.  


Delivering more efficient data management through consolidated archiving can reduce operational costs. It also can enhance physicians’ ability to obtain a more holistic view of each patient, which can enhance patient care.


New archiving and image viewer solutions can be delivered through an on-site implementation or as a cloud service.


The exponential growth in data and the need to share it across multiple users and locations is making the cloud a much more attractive option for many healthcare providers. The cloud’s strategic importance to business leaders is expected to double and global healthcare cloud services providers have proven they can provide efficient, secure data archiving and data sharing among authorized physician users.


A new development is that patients also want to share images and data electronically with physicians and family members. A recent study of 1,000 U.S. adults conducted by IDR Medical, an international healthcare marketing company, found that 79 percent of patients would be more likely to return to a facility that offers an online imaging portal. 


The industry’s growing focus on patient satisfaction is illustrated by the fact that 30 percent of CMS financial incentives are based on this measure. The need for a patient portal is further strengthened by Meaningful Use Stage 2 rules in which CMS requires that at least 10 percent of imaging results must be accessible through certified EHR/EMR technology.


Carestream offers an advanced vendor-neutral archiving platform as well as a fully featured physician viewer and patient portal. The latest release runs on the 64-bit architecture (a works in progress) which will deliver significant improvements in computing performance, security, availability and virtualization. The zero footprint physician viewer can be embedded into a EMR portal, which also supports secure access from mobile devices such as a tablet which complements Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) strategy. These capabilities are available as on-site deployment or as cloud services. Carestream Health placed in the top three of the world’s largest suppliers of vendor-neutral archiving (VNA) solutions in a 2013 report by IHS, a marketing research and consulting service. The company’s cloud services manage more than 80 million imaging studies in 10 data centers worldwide.


What questions do you have?


The Maturing of Mobility

Posted by jamalloy Feb 13, 2014

As HIMSS14 approaches, we are sharing a pre-show guest blog series from health IT industry experts on trends you can expect to hear about at the event. Below is a guest contribution from Justin Barnes, a vice president at Greenway, chairman emeritus of the national Electronic Health Records Association (EHR Association) and co-chair of the Accountable Care Community of Practice (ACCoP).


Few, if any, aspects of healthcare have historically grown as quickly as mobile delivery. If you are reading this on a phone or tablet, you have a sense of mobile technology. If you can similarly access EHR functionality integrated with patient records, you have reached one forefront of mobile care. And if you are considering downloading mobile medical applications for informational, clinical or financial reasons to further streamline your care network, you may well have reason to pause: Do they work? Are they safe for patients? Meet data security or HIPAA compliance? How to choose?


The subset of mobile medical applications - more than 40,000 alone labeled for healthcare available today - is of course the explosion within the growth, for both care providers and patient-consumers. Described as anything from the Wild West to an innovation panacea to an opportunistic hindrance, a variety of steps in recent months and into the new year are settling the industry’s approach to mobile apps and mobile delivery toward the potential of meaningful interaction between provider and patient:


• In December, HIMSS published its nearly 50-page comprehensive roadmap, Mobile Health Apps: A Practical Guide for Healthcare Stakeholders, recommended reading for any practice, health or hospital system.

• The annual mHealth Summit, also in December, drew more than 5,000 attendees with intent to foster best practices within health systems, pharma, policy and payers, and featured international speakers.

• In January at the IHE North America Connectathon, the inclusion of standards organizations within the personal health apps, device and mobility segment, invited to pursue integration with healthcare information technologies, is an important step in the maturing of mobile health.

• And likely no other step was as anticipated as last September’s FDA final guidance on mobile medical applications. Here the agency stated that medical devices, accessories to regulated medical devices, or apps that transform a mobile platform into a medical device carrying certain levels of risk, are subject to oversight. For example, those providing a medical image for diagnostic purposes from a PACS archive onto a smartphone or tablet, or an app that offers ECG capability to detect abnormal heart rhythms or diagnose a heart attack.


The FDA’s narrow regulatory definition was itself recognition of the maturity of mobile EHR and personal health record technology excluded from oversight, as well as apps that measure, monitor, offer lists or reminders, self-manage or offer simple clinical decision support around symptoms or drug checks.


Continued Growth and Challenges

This of course leaves a very large market the health IT industry must continue to vet on behalf of providers and patients.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation predicts a 25 percent growth in available apps annually, and that 500 million consumers and providers worldwide will use a mobile health app within the next two years. That’s a predicted $8 billion market by 2018, says GlobalData, a 44 percent annual rise from the $500 million market experienced in 2010.


It’s no wonder that Apple and Google recently secured meetings with FDA officials in preparation of bringing products to market. Thankfully what is also maturing is the infrastructure around mobile data, as global firms such as Intel advance secure cloud technology and data warehousing, because much of healthcare delivery and therefore mobile health is driven by data.


At my company, Greenway, we have approached mobility on two fronts. One is providing applications to place EHR functions onto phones and tablets. The other is integrating vetted apps into the EHR through API technology and then available to providers and their communities of health.


The next step is bringing providers and patients together.


Patient-Provider Convergence Still Forming

Right now there are sophisticated apps that providers can display on tablets with anatomical images, showing patients precisely what a procedure entails and allowing notes, drawings and enhanced visuals. Patients can use it as well to send back follow up queries, all of which can enhance the provider-patient relationship.


For patient-consumers, there are healthcare plan apps that locate providers and hospitals in network, details out-of-pocket costs per provider and include patient discharge satisfaction surveys and board certifications.


Still to come though is full integration of provider and patient apps that advance clinical care and outcomes, or help patients manage – not just understand – their medical condition or latest monitor rates. But should apps give rise to a real-time mobile consultation?


This is the challenge for the health IT and the healthcare industry overall to address. It’s a matter of determining the right ongoing remote or mobile link between provider and patient that can be merged into workflows, not add costs, can be billed when appropriate, merged into patient records and satisfies care coordination payment and delivery models.


The foundations are being laid to mature mobile health on these fronts, because how far away are we from patients being prescribed an app? Or more so from patients asking their providers for one?

While many of us can’t wait to get to sunny Orlando to escape this year’s cold winter temperatures, HIMSS14 is actually a great opportunity to see the newest health IT devices that clinicians will be asking for in 2014 and beyond.


HIMSS is always a busy hub of activity, so to make it easy for you to find the most popular tablets and 2:1 devices on the market, as well as data center and cloud solutions, you are invited to participate in the Intel Technologies Demo Tour. You could even win a tablet PC in the process.


Here’s how it works: visit the Intel mobile HIMSS page and register beginning Feb. 20. At HIMSS, check in at participating exhibit booths with your smartphone and when you reach five visits, you are entered into the drawings for a tablet. One prize will be awarded each day; once your entry is in, you are eligible for all drawings. So get your visits in early for a better chance to win.


While you’re building your HIMSS schedule, be sure to attend this educational session (#74) with Intel Health & Life Sciences General Manager Eric Dishman on Tuesday, Feb. 25, at 10 a.m. in Room #320. During his talk, Eric will share his own experience battling cancer and the lessons he learned about the importance of a customized care treatment plan. You will also hear about the future of genomics and personalized medicine.


Finally, be sure to follow us on Twitter to keep up-to-date on all the happenings going on at the event.


Enjoy HIMSS14! See you in Orlando.

Below is the fifth in a series of guest posts from Nirav R. Shah, MD, MPH, the commissioner of health for the state of New York. Look for more of his blogs in the Intel Health & Life Sciences Community in the coming months.


You’re heading to the couch for a post-dinner nap when you get a text message asking if you’ve taken a walk today. You bypass the couch, lace up your sneakers and hit the nearby park for a 15-minute walk. 


For someone at risk for diabetes, that simple walk could be a lifesaver – and the key to preventing diabetes. A little exercise after a meal is often all it takes to usher glucose out of the bloodstream and into your cells, where it’s used up for energy. And the text reminder to take that walk? That could be just one of many new high-tech ways to prevent diabetes, perhaps even “prescribed” for you by your doctor and paid for by your health insurance.


The text app was the winning concept at New York State’s first-ever Health Data Code-a-thon, a 24-hour coding event staged by the New York State Department of Health at the EMPAC Theater on the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute campus on Troy, N.Y. in December. The event was funded by a grant from the New York State Health Foundation, with additional support provided by Socrata.


Participants were invited to use health data to create applications that can help stem the state’s two biggest health challenges: diabetes and obesity. The code-a-thon was part of a larger event called NY Innovates, which brought together health and technology stakeholders for collaborations and conversations about software development tools and techniques.


The easy-to-use texting app, which was called Vera, won its creators -- Raymond Jacobson, Olufemi King and Ethan Bond -- the top prize of $6,000. Vera asks you to enter your age, height and weight, and then lets you know if you’re at risk for diabetes. If you are, you’ll receive text reminders to make smart food choices, exercise regularly and manage your blood glucose.


Second prize went to ActiveSideKicks, a mobile app that allows users to join groups anonymously or with friends and family, to track exercise and health stats with the support of group members. Third place was awarded to DOEFANI (Diabetes and Obesity Education using Franchise and Nutrition Information), a web app that helps users find restaurants in their area while providing nutritional information about the foods there and restaurant health inspection data.


The Code-a-thon is only the beginning. All three teams will have the chance to participate in the New York State Health Innovation Challenge in 2014. With any luck, these tools will be brought to market.


But for now, we’ve had the chance to see what can happen when tech savvy coders get their hands on health data. The possibilities are in a word, endless.


What questions do you have about health apps?

Mobile point-of-care has dramatically changed clinicians’ workflows. An additional benefit may be the impact on patients. Mobile technology has empowered patients and brought a renewed sense of involvement in their own care.


How clinicians and patients interact using mobile technology is in its infancy, according to one prominent physician. Andrew Watson, a chief medical information officer and the medical director for the Center of Connected Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, says a cultural shift is underway and that by using mobile technology patients can have access to care wherever they may be. Watch his video interview above to learn more.


What's your take on the direction of mobile health IT?

Below is a guest blog submission from Ashley Rodrigue, Healthcare Ambassador at Lenovo.


Without a doubt, technology has transformed how healthcare providers deliver care. Providers are increasingly using technology in the management and treatment of their patients, and this surge is a result of federal guidelines that were passed requiring hospitals to demonstrate “meaningful use” of electronic health records. And if certain criteria are met, providers are eligible to earn incentive payments.


We talk a lot about what technology is doing for providers, but what can it do for patients?  There’s growing appeal for technology to target end users, or patients, in addition to providers. In fact, providers and organizations are investing in technology that not only meets IT requirements, but patient requirements, as well.


Hospitals are starting to explore how technology, can improve the inpatient experience. Imagine you’re a patient. You walk through the doors of your hospital and when you check in, you’re handed a tablet – and it’s yours to use until you check out. A recent Wall Street Journal article discusses the variety of ways tablets are being used by inpatients. From the comfort of their beds, they can use their tablet to contact their doctor with questions, notify nurses if they need meds, access hospital paperwork that needs sign off, and turn the lights on and off in their room.


Tablets that are equipped with mobile point of sale (mPOS) solutions can even be used by patients to make secure electronic payments. With an easy swipe, they can order meals from the hospital cafeteria, a movie if they’re bored, access Facebook and Skype with family and friends.


By the time patients check out of the hospital, they leave having been more connected and engaged with their doctors, nurses and the management of their health. And it doesn’t have to stop there. Other healthcare environments – like ambulatory care and long term care facilities – can leverage tablets.


Patients can use a tablet to check into their appointment at an ambulatory care facility. If it’s a routine visit, they can check in, log in how they’re feeling, sign into their patient portal to review their medical history, access their co-pay information and sign off on relevant documents. And how about using a tablet to occupy your time as you’re sitting in the waiting room, waiting for your name to be called? Imagine having the opportunity to read your email, play a game, or check Facebook or Twitter to pass the time.


There’s also significant opportunity for tablets to be “leased” to long term care patients. It is estimated that the population of adults 65 years and older will expand to 72 million by 2030.1 As part of a home care preventative maintenance plan, or a long term care facility inpatient plan, a tablet equipped with what patients need, like apps, can make a significant difference to their health. For instance, just think how a grandparent can benefit from understanding how to video chat with their families that live far away or can’t visit all the time.


What do you think of this growing trend, and how tablets can improve the patient experience?


1 U.S. News & World Report. How Baby Boomers Will Change the Economy. http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/On-Retirement/2013/01/15/how-baby-boomers-will-change-the-economy.

Below is a guest blog from Alice Borrelli, director of Global Healthcare Policy for Intel.


During today’s forum, hosted by Intel Corporation, The Aspen Institute and Bipartisan Policy Center, we will discuss how the promise of technology solving society’s complex goals will rely, in part, on how we manage the information explosion. And, nowhere is the challenge more evident than in personalized medicine where the human genome consists of 3 billion DNA based pairs. Intel and our partners are compressing processing time for genome sequencing to accelerate targeted and personalized medicine.


In a new policy paper -- Compute for Personalized Medicine -- Intel gives seven policy recommendations that will accelerate the usage of this critically important health information. We invite policy makers to join us in the quest to make genomics information accessible and clinically useful by considering the following recommendations:


1. Share the Data: Create and ensure the interoperability of technical standards for managing and sharing sequenced data in research and clinical samples.

2. Show me the Evidence: Determine clear guidelines for data sharing from clinical trials.

3. Streamline privacy regulations: Harmonize existing privacy laws to protect patient data while offering a pathway to maximizing the research data available today.

4. Show me the Money: Provide reimbursement models for clinical use of genomics and predictive modeling.

5. Clarify the Regulations : Provide guidance to reduce the regulatory overlap between CMS and FDA.

6. Protect My Predictions: Ensure that current genomic privacy laws provide adequate coverage for non-discrimination.

7. Bring it Now: Integrate the scientific discoveries into everyday clinical usage.


What questions do you have?

Below is a guest blog post by Ashley Rodrigue, Healthcare Ambassador at Lenovo.


A doctor might start her day by reviewing her upcoming schedule on her tablet while her coffee brews. When patient appointments or rounds in a hospital begin for the day, she switches to her laptop. She has each patient’s electronic record pulled up on the screen and uses the physical keyboard to take notes during the appointment. When she sits down at her desk in between appointments, it’s back to the tablet. She uses the touchscreen to review lab results and patient scans.


You get the picture – it’s not uncommon for doctors to switch back-and-forth between tablets and laptops all day because each device type has features that are best suited for different tasks. Imagine the challenges of using two (or more) devices each day: The doctor must be familiar with and competent in navigating both devices. She must also make sure that both devices are charged, which can be a difficult thing to remember when your number one priority is providing patient care. The IT organization has to keep two devices up-to-date on software and security updates.


To address these challenges, many healthcare organizations are adopting convertible Windows*  8 Professional Ultrabooks™ - providing the best of both in one solution. Convertibles provide the versatility for use as either a laptop or a tablet. In laptop mode, doctors can use the physical keyboard to enter patient notes. Then, depending on the device, they can flip, twist or bend the screen over backwards to access the touchscreen in tablet mode for a mobile option to use apps.


The promise of convertible devices to improve “bedside manner” is perhaps the number one benefit. The PC user experience should not prevent the clinical professional from focusing on the patient while simultaneously viewing and entering information. With one device, the doctor can master navigation of electronic records, making it simple to pull up the information she needs during a patient appointment. With her focus off navigating the device, she can put her time and energy back into the conversation with the patient.


Managing one device – specifically a Windows device – is also an IT dream. Most IT departments have been supporting Windows for years, so the familiarity with the platform allows them to keep data on convertibles (and tablets) as secure as on laptops.


What is your prediction for convertibles in healthcare organizations?  


Below is the fourth in a series of guest posts from Nirav R. Shah, MD, MPH, the commissioner of health for the state of New York. Look for more of his blogs in the Intel Healthcare Community in the coming months.


Mr. Jones shows up in the emergency room, complaining of severe insomnia. The problem list on his electronic health record highlights his ailments -- diabetes, asthma, anxiety, depression and migraines. A doctor prescribes a stronger anti-anxiety medication, but his insomnia does not subside.


Now imagine if that problem list also reveals that Mr. Jones is homeless, struggles with a substance abuse problem, and has a son who is in and out of prison – a surefire recipe for insomnia, if ever there was one.  Instead of giving him a pill, the staff uses that information to reach out to existing community agencies that help Mr. Jones find stable housing, a new drug counselor and support for his son -- for less than the cost of an emergency room visit.


That’s what happens when you have a health home, a health care model that delivers coordinated care to the state’s neediest patients, those who have complex behavioral, medical and long-term health needs and two or more chronic conditions.


A health home is not a physical place, but rather a model of health care in the Affordable Care Act geared for the 5 percent of the population that accounts for 50 percent of our total health care costs. Maimonides Medical Center has created the Brooklyn Health Home, which targets adults with complex health issues, serious mental illness, HIV and substance abuse issues, and is funded by the New York State Medicaid program.


Each patient in the Brooklyn Health Home has a care team comprised of a care manager, care navigator, and primary care doctor, and if needed, a psychiatrist and/or therapist. Other potential team members include specialty physicians, home care nurses, social workers, residence managers, substance abuse providers and caregivers in the home.


The team members are linked through the Statewide Health Information Network for New York, or SHINY-NY. If a patient sees a specialist or gets a new medication, everyone on his team knows about it.


Medical problems are only part of the equation. Problem lists in the Brooklyn Health Home also include social challenges and together with medical issues, get prioritized from the patient’s perspective. Everyone on the team knows if a patient gets evicted, experiences domestic violence or loses his home health aide. That’s what makes the model unique – an entire team is looking out for patients who not only have multiple medical needs but are vulnerable to social factors that sabotage good health.  After all, the social determinants of our lives – income, education, housing -- have as much of an impact on our health as medical ones, if not more.


With Mr. Jones, we know that connecting him to a new substance abuse counselor is likely to go farther than simply handing him a new medication. By creating a patient-centered problem list, we can lower the use of hospital emergency departments, reduce hospital inpatient admissions and cut back on 30-day readmissions. We can also improve patient care.


When we know the social context of a patient’s life, we get a bigger picture of his health needs. Health data lets us do that and makes it possible for us to address the social hindrances to good health as well as the medical ones.


What questions do you have?

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