The convergence of health systems with technology (US)

Intermountain Healthcare has been well-known for its proactive approach to healthcare models–it moved early to a fixed-fee integrated delivery system (IDS), helped to pioneer the evidence-based healthcare approach and was an early adopter of EMRs. It was one of the main providers cited in the influential The Innovator’s Prescription written by Clayton Christensen, the late Jerome Grossman, MD and Jason Hwang, MD. It’s now further backing technology development and integration through its new Healthcare Transformation Lab. Founding members Xi3 and Intel, and ‘collaborators’ Dell, CenturyLink, NetApp, and Sotera Wireless are participants in the new 20,000 square foot facility at Intermountain’s lead hospital in Murray, Utah. Some of the prototypes already being readied are the ‘patient room of the future’, 3D printing of medical devices for testing purposes, a watch-form handwashing sensor, a ‘life detector’ for patient vital signs (an outgrowth of ViSi Mobile TTA 23 Aug 12?), a mobile vital signs monitor/data collector for use by helicopter rescue teams, an alert system for at-risk for suicide patients based on increased heart rate, and more. What seems to be missing are innovations related to the specific needs of older, frailer patients. Release. The extensive coverage is indicative of Intermountain’s influence in healthcare far beyond Utah: Healthcare IT News, FierceHealthIT, iHealthBeat, Salt Lake City Tribune. Will other health systems follow in influencing and funding health tech?

Big data in healthcare’s Tower of Babel: interview with Eric Topol

A short interview in iHealthBeat with Eric Topol, MD, Lydon Newmann of Impact Advisors and Lee Pierce from Intermountain Healthcare shows the bright side of business intel/’big data’. All that structured and unstructured data collected on individuals can be put to good use by data warehousing and analysis–a success story is Intermountain’s reduction of induced births from 30 percent to 5 percent. Yet the wins outlined are single system. Eric Topol agrees with this Editor that “The problem that exists is they lack any ability to transfer information from one to the next. There’s no interoperability. So we have a Tower of Babel.” Audio (and a dissenting comment) here, PDF transcript here.