HIMSS23 is a global healthcare conference uniting thought leaders, disruptors, and changemakers across the health information and technology sector. Peers and experts gathered to develop, strengthen, and learn from the relationship between health and technology. The theme of the conference is “health that connects and tech that cares” focusing on innovation, interoperability, cybersecurity, patient engagement, and digital health transformation.
We had an opportunity to engage with leading executives in the healthcare space and understand the trends shaping the healthcare landscape. Three major themes stood out during our time at the conference:
We’ll explore these themes and their impact on the healthcare industry.
Improving Healthcare Interoperability
Healthcare interoperability is a weighty topic and inspired hundreds of unique education sessions discussing everything from developing standards for interoperability and handling interoperability at scale to innovating the space through artificial intelligence.
In her session, AI and Data Interoperability: A Symbiotic Relationship for Healthcare, Tina Manoharan, VP of Data & AI Center of Excellence at Philips, delves into the opportunity space for AI and healthcare interoperability. “In order to create impactful AI, you need the right data from different sources. The better real-world information you have, the better AI insight you can derive,” shares Manoharan. “The good part is we have a very good understanding of the challenges with interoperability and the value we can create in patients’ lives with AI. We need to overcome those challenges together,” she adds.
Beyond the exciting application of AI, there are ample opportunities to simplify interoperability for healthcare organizations. Justin McMartin and Terry Douglas described how SureScripts derives real value from the Surescripts Network Alliance, an industry-defining interoperability resource. In their presentation, Interoperability at Scale: Volume, Value Beyond Prescribing, they shared how health organizations demonstrate interoperability at tremendous scale across care settings every minute. Still, the real value is in the outcomes rather than the volume.
Lastly, we learned that interoperability should be crucial for all medical organizations to incorporate into their strategy. Jessica Sweeney-Platt, Vice President of Research and Editorial Strategy at athenahealth, described the power of interoperability in her session on Views from the Top: Intuitive Interoperability and Improved Patient Outcomes. She believes that government regulations have moved the healthcare industry along the first section of the journey, but more work is required to achieve a fully connected ecosystem. “Real change occurs when forward-thinking companies not only comply with regulations but build innovation that leans into interoperability,” reveals Sweeney-Platt.
Building a Foundation with Data Transformation
Healthcare organizations run on data. As data volumes increase and organizations need richer insights, executives look at their data management as a whole and realize a need for transformation.
The proper digital infrastructure enables a more connected, agile healthcare system. Tim Kuruvilla, Head of Commercialization at Roche Information Solution, acknowledges that healthcare historically has been organized around a disease-centered approach but is moving towards a patient-centric discipline instead. “[This shift] is enabled by data connected across systems, providers, and institutions which can produce insights for improving care.” By establishing a solid data foundation, the healthcare landscape can foster better collaboration to benefit patients.
Similarly, Vision Service Plan (VSP) was on a mission to improve its internal data to provide insightful information across the enterprise. In collaboration with Snowflake and Concord, VSP embarked on its data transformation journey to better serve its member and provider needs with increased operational excellence and leverage data as a strategic asset. In the Snowflake Theater session entitled Improving Visibility and Accuracy Across the Enterprise, Snowflake invited VSP’s Alan Cordell, Chief Analytics Officer, and Concord’s Keir Anderson, Senior Manager of Data Management, to showcase the progress and success of VSP’s transformation journey. “We needed to shift analysts from wrangling data to generating insights and managing decisions,” shared Cordell. “By partnering with Snowflake and Concord, we kick-started our transformational journey and achieved a faster time to value, simplified on-boarding, and a focus on business agility and enablement,” Cordell affirms.
Innovating with Healthcare AI
It’s almost impossible to talk about healthcare innovation without mentioning artificial intelligence. There are countless applications of AI in healthcare – automating workflows, implementing chatbots to assist patients, diagnosing and preventing diseases, analyzing large volumes of data to predict outcomes, and developing personalized treatment plans.
While AI has exciting applications, there are challenges to consider. Ty Vachon, CEO and co-founder of Oatmeal Health, emphasized the importance of setting realistic expectations for AI. “In order to make sure we get the right care to the right patients at the right time, we need to be very aware of potential bias [in AI],” shared Vachon. “We want to have a realistic view of the tools available and what to look out for in terms of pitfalls,” he adds.
Suchi Saria, Founder and CEO of Bayesian Health, talks about the developments in AI over the last year in particular. “People can’t stop talking about ChatGPT, for example. Obviously, healthcare is not like advertising or other sectors. In healthcare, you have to worry about quality and safety. In the last eight years, I’ve done extensive work on how to make AI trustworthy and how to make AI ready for use by clinicians in care applications.”
Connect with Concord
Concord’s healthcare experts enjoyed learning, engaging, and connecting with preeminent healthcare experts at HIMSS. From clinics to claims, we help clients improve every aspect of their business to deliver more effective, affordable healthcare. Our healthcare strategy team focuses on four key areas:
If you didn’t get a chance to connect with us at HIMSS, please reach out and find out how we can help your business enable greater resiliency, efficiency, and innovation.