Movers and SHAKERS
image credit: Panodex - BigQuery (Flickr)
Medical and Tech Giants to Apply AI to Records for Actionable Care Insights
Google (GOOG) and HCA Healthcare (HCA) just announced (May 26) a partnership to build on HCA Healthcare’s use of information technology to further their transformation to benefit from collected patient data. According to an HCA press release, “The partnership with Google Cloud is designed to help create a secure and dynamic data analytics platform for HCA Healthcare and enable the development of next generation operational models focused on actionable insights and improved workflows.”
Under the plan, HCA’s 2,000 locations in 21 states would consolidate and store digital health records along with information from internet-connected medical devices with Google Data. The multiyear agreement will require Google and HCA engineers to work to help improve operating efficiency, monitor patients and guide doctors’ decisions.
Patients Privacy and Providing Data
The company said, “While protecting patient privacy and the security of data, HCA Healthcare uses information from its 32 million annual encounters to identify opportunities to improve clinical care and support its 93,000 nurses and 47,000 active and affiliated physicians.” The data collected can be valuable for the hospital chain while at the same time serve to better inform global medical care. HCA Healthcare has published studies in leading medical journals like the New England Journal of Medicine and The Lancet, developed algorithm-informed decision support tools for caregivers, and identified clinical practices that reduce infections and improve perinatal care. The partnership with Google Cloud is expected to enhance efforts by HCA to continue to improve and develop advanced decision support to promote quality, safety, and efficiency.
Data Science in Medicine
Data generated by hospitals places them in an enviable position as brokers of this information. Patients under their care, being seen by doctors, labs, pharmacies, and monitored by medical devices, provide records of treatment, behavior, patterns, and results. This information, fed through algorithms developed by data-mining companies, can serve as a revenue source as it may be sold to pharmaceutical and technology companies. The data-mining companies involved include large companies like Google right down start-ups where the profits are more impactful on financials. The results, if done with strict control over privacy, can be win-win-win as patient care improves, hospitals benefit, and tech companies provide solutions.
Looking Toward the Future
“The cloud can be an accelerant for innovation in health, particularly in driving data interoperability, which is critical in streamlining operations and providing better quality of care to improve patient outcomes,” said Thomas Kurian, CEO, Google Cloud Sam Hazen, CEO of HCA healthcare stated, “Next-generation care demands data science-informed decision support so we can more sharply focus on safe, efficient and effective patient care.” The cloud-based network is intended to allow clinicians to rely on it for on-the-fly decisions, as well as medical staff in more controlled settings.
HCA Healthcare has deployed 90,000 mobile devices that run tools created by the organization’s PatientKeeper and Mobile Heartbeat teams and other developers to empower caregivers. The partnership with Google Cloud is expected to empower physicians, nurses and others with workflow tools, analysis and alerts on their mobile devices to help clinicians respond quickly to changes in a patient’s condition.
This is an opportunity for both partnered companies to benefit while, with sufficient safety and security measures in place, positively impact care patients receive.
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