Digital Transformation in Healthcare – How Technology Is Changing the Future of Care Delivery

November 23, 2017

Digital transformation is more than just another industry buzzword. It’s about creating a technology strategy for your healthcare organization that improves clinical workflows, links to decision support real-time,  enhances patient engagements and adds important security layers to protect patient data. Today, hospitals are exploring technologies that they can roll out to transform care delivery that allow them not only to reduce costs but also to make patients safer and doctors’ lives easier by providing the tools they need to deliver the most up-to-date, accurate care to patients.

Transforming your healthcare organization isn’t something that happens overnight. It  requires balancing the end-user experience and enhancing security. It means continuous improvement for systems and care processes. It also involves reducing costs. This can sound daunting, but many healthcare providers are achieving this balance.

Make no mistake, it requires partnering with the right technology partners to ensure you’re implementing a solution that rolls out smoothly and doesn’t get in the way of care delivery.

Few examples of the transformation that is already in progress:

  • Clinical decision-making tools are helping clinicians by presenting the most important information at the point of care. For instance, applied artificial intelligence (AI) is putting the power of “machine learning” at the forefront of next-generation care. Think of Amazon’s “suggestions” when a consumer makes a purchase online; through data analytics and IT, the site automatically makes recommendations on what additional items they think that person may be interested in purchasing. The same concept can be applied to clinicians’ orders—AI can suggest which orders should be considered based on an analysis of treatment patterns in similar patients. At a minimum, this will save clinicians time by putting orders a click away. In some cases, this will help avoid a missed or delayed order that could affect patient safety.
  • Adaptable user interfaces have the capacity to transform the way that doctors work by changing the way clinical data is presented based on a range of factors: The doctor’s specialty, personal care preferences, and the overall patient health situation. With paper-based health records, there was only one view, and no way for a specialist to highlight the most important information pertaining to the patient. With adaptable electronic interfaces to a computerized patient record, doctors are able to save time and reduce the chance of missing a critical piece of information.
  • Clinical insights driven by “big data” analytics are also contributing to more efficient, actionable, and effective healthcare. One of the first targets for this type of effort is sepsis in the hospital environment. According to the National Institute for General Medical Sciences, sepsis accounts for more U.S. deaths than prostate cancer, breast cancer, and AIDS combined. One of the biggest reasons for this high mortality rate is the rapid progression of the illness, which requires quick detection and intervention. With a digitized health record and the constant vigilance of an inference engine, patients at risk for sepsis can be identified more quickly, when the disease is in its earliest stages, vastly increasing the number of lives that can be saved.

These are just a few examples of how information technology could transform care delivery. To realize the full potential of healthcare digitization, it will take more than just good technology. It must be incorporated seamlessly into the clinician workflow in a way that contributes to (rather than hinders) patient care.

Digital Transformation: The Industry’s Next Medical Miracle:

  • Seamlessly using business critical infrastructure to customize workflows for clinicians
  • Reliably enabling continuity of care across environments and during disasters
  • Quickly providing secure contextual access to varied information systems
  • Easily creating and enabling a single dashboard for centralized management
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