Is it acceptable for physicians to text patient orders to the hospital? No, answered the Joint Commission in a 2011 statement. But that doesn’t mean that physicians don’t do it, despite the commission’s concerns that texting makes it difficult to verify the sender’s identification and that texts aren’t archived for validation purposes. Physicians still text because it is time-efficient, convenient, and they’re used to doing it in their everyday lives.
For an idea of the kinds of scenarios in which texting makes sense, watch TigerText’s demo video. At one point a nurse asks the doctor to come down to the ER to look at a patient’s wound for signs of infection. Instead, the doctor asks for a picture message of the wound, and from the image he’s able to see that there’s no infection. As doctors’ workflows evolve with the times, TigerText aims to provide doctors with a secure way to carry out this type of communication.
“My brother who is 50 likes to say that basically nothing has changed on day-to-day health care communication since he was a resident,” CEO of TigerText Brad Brooks said of his brother, Andrew Brooks, MD, who is an advisor to the company. However, today the TigerText Pro solution is used by 350 enterprises, and the company’s announcement this week that it opened its API to third party developers means that its service could start to change more rapidly.
TigerText’s now open platform means that physicians who use it could start to communicate outside of the hospital. For example, imaging labs and diagnostic companies will be able to send lab results from their facilities to physicians via TigerConnect, which Brooks describes as a conduit. They can also see when their files were delivered to and viewed by the physician, saving the labs the time of having to track doctors down by phone.
Brooks talked about a couple of other use cases made possible by the open API. TigerText has already integrated with AMiON, a physician schedule manager. The integration allows doctors to use their mobile device or computer to type in queries like “Dr. Green” or “4 p.m.” to find out when a specific doctor is on call or to find out who’s on at a particular time.
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Don’t miss the next Health 2.0 Show March 27th at 10:00am PT.
This month we’re covering Big Data and the Quantified Self. Special guest DJ Patil will join us in an interview to talk about the world of Big Data including his role as Data Scientist in Residence at Greylock, lessons learned, and what trends he thinks will emerge in the future.
One area that benefits greatly from big data is the Quantified Self movement. As more and more people begin tracking their health with sensors, they’re adding millions of data points to the huge web of big data. One of the hottest areas for tracking is exercise which is why we’ve invited the team behind Jog of War, a mobile location-based jogging game, to join us for the show. The game was developed at Health 2.0′s Code-a-thon Berlin in November 2012 and allows users to stake their claim on jogging routes. It was a big hit in Berlin and we’re excited to see what the team has been working on since.
We’ll also feature big news stories, details on upcoming Health 2.0 events, including Health:Refactored and the 7th annual Fall Conference, and a few other surprises!
Want to learn more about bit data and the Quantified Self? Watch our session Data Drives Decisions from the 2011 fall conference and an interview with Quantified Self founder Gary Wolf.
You can watch previous episodes of the Health 2.0 Show here.
Kaiser Permanente held an event today in Washington, D.C. to discuss the alignment, and in many cases the nonalignment, of the kinds of health care-related information that different groups are posting to the web. At the event, American Voices ― Aligned for Health, Greg Matthews, group director at communications firm WCG, presented data from WCG’s most recent MDigitalLife study.
MDigitalLife analyzed more than two million physician tweets with an objective that differed from most other previous social media studies relating to physicians. Rather than looking at the data for usage trends, the group examined the content of the tweets to extract physicians’ opinions on certain health care topics.
Matthews and his team also used the data to determine the most talked about health subjects on Twitter by physicians. Then they went two steps further and compared this to the most talked about health subjects by both news media outlets as well as United States members of Congress.
First when MDigitalLife studied just the physician database, it found that 80% of the tweets analyzed were about treatment, research and prevention, and the rest were about policy or business. The statistic suggests that doctors are more interested in tweeting educational material than anything else.
That certainly doesn’t indicate that all are strictly sharing information in a neutral fashion online. Matthews dove into an example of what happened last May when the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force recommend against routinely screening for prostate cancer using the prostate-specific antigen test. This resulted in a huge spike in the volume of tweets about prostate cancer by physicians.
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Big Data is discussed by many organizations as necessary in achieving a smarter health care system than the one we have now. At the same time, others are looking for ways to bolster the effects of Small Data, which are basically data that can be obtained without a supercomputer.
Under the category of Small Data falls the kind that are patient-reported through questionnaires or interviews. These responses can tell an individual organization a lot about the effectiveness of the care they are giving, and at a broader level they can reveal how well specific treatments are working within a disease community. While patient-reported outcome surveys essentially ask a patient how he or she feels, delivering the question in a way that yields useful answers isn’t something that’s done very well right now.
Health care philanthropy organization Robert Wood Johnson Foundation just announced that it awarded online patient network PatientsLikeMe a $1.9 million grant to work on this problem. The grant will be used to develop a platform that invites patients, researchers, pharmaceutical companies and others to collaboratively develop health outcome measures. PatientsLikeMe’s Research Director Paul Wicks, Ph.D., presented the new initiative today at TED2013.
Many think of the EQ-5D measure when they think of patient reported outcomes. While EQ-5D is an effective tool for gauging health outcomes at the population level, it doesn’t tell someone much about themselves.
“No individual patient has said, ‘You know I really need to get my EQ-5D up to 80,’” Co-Founder of PatientsLikeMe Jamie Heywood said. “A good test for whether or an instrument is relevant is would someone feel like their condition was captured and measured in a way that they would want to improve it in that scale? And almost all of them fail on that index with very few exceptions.”
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Our team at Health 2.0 is excited about sharing the 2013 Matchpoint program. Since our last post, we’ve created new ways to enhance both of our sponsors’ and innovators’ experiences in finding lasting partnerships.
Matchpoint East is set to hit the ground running in New York City in June, where innovations are more than noteworthy. As Marco Smit, SVP of Health 2.0 put it, “Health 2.0 recognizes the caliber of health tech startups in New York’s burgeoning health technology ecosystem.” Thus, we are prepared to impress our host sponsors for yet another round of Matchpoint meetings.
As Matchpoint East marks the launch of this year’s series of live meetings, we’re also introducing Matchpoint OnDemand, our new method of introducing innovators to host sponsors virtually. OnDemand allows companies to meet whenever, wherever. Companies can meet on-the-spot, without the need to wait for our traditional in-person meetings. What I hope this brings to the table is the convenience and opportunity to improve dialogue between health industry leaders and our innovative community. More meetings may equate to more avenues for meaningful discussions with innovative trailblazers.
Additionally, we are adding market intelligence reports for our sponsors which highlight hot new companies, market segment developments, and funding news. Sponsors can get the inside scoop on new market trends and companies that Health 2.0 has their eye on. Also, Health 2.0 is also offering custom Matchpoints for various organizations and foundations through the year.
We’ve got a busy year ahead with these new additions, but we are excited to see how these new products will give companies greater chances to meet than ever before. Our previous participants have found lasting partnerships with big clients. We are looking forward to encouraging more of them.
Kareo launched its free cloud-based EHR, which is available as a stand-alone application or can integrate with other Kareo products. Kareo acquired mobile technology and a clinical knowledge base from Epocrates and leveraged these assets in developing its new EHR.
Saluspot, a Madrid-based interactive community of physicians, raised €1 million in funding. The company uses social networking to provide health advice. Saluspot will be using the capital for expansion in Spain as well as globally.
Biotech firm Sequenta, Inc. launched ClonoSIGHT, the first sequencing-based test for minimal residual diseases (MRD) for Leukemia and Lymphoma. ClonoSIGHT sequences unique DNA signatures present in immune cells to allow tracking of malignant sub-populations, at levels as low as one cell per million white blood cells.
QPID, an EHR intelligence platform was recently launched. This system allows retrieval and integration of EHR data in clinical workflow to deliver meaningful information to through a web-based application in real time.
Four Rivers Software Systems integrated Versus Technology’s real time location software (RTLS) to its Total Maintenance System (TMS) Asset Management Software. TMS allows hospitals to track mobile medical equipment. The integration is already in use at the Children’s Hospital of Alabama in Birmingham.
San Diego-based health IT startup Sanitas, Inc. received FDA approval for its class II medical device called Wellaho. This personalized outpatient management service allows providers to monitor chronically ill patients between clinic visits.
Vaccination Scheduler, a new iPhone app, sends reminders about due vaccinations based on the child’s date of birth. The app comes preinstalled with vaccination names and recommended dates. The app can also send personalized emails about vaccination history, appointments and due dates. This app is available for a discount until the end of February.
The Advisory Board Company acquired 360Fresh, a clinical data analytics company. The company enhances its existing portfolio of physician performance management tools with the addition of 360Fresh’s technology that transforms patient data from a variety of information systems into actionable insights.
Geisinger Health System launched xG Health Solutions. The startup, which will offer services ranging from consulting to population health data analytics and health care IT optimization, has $40 million in funding from Oak Investment Partners.
Bina, a health care startup working at the intersection of Big Data and genomics, released its commercial product this week. Bina’s package includes a hardware box to collect DNA, software to process the data, and applications to turn the data into actionable form. Bina can complete a full genetic analysis in a matter of hours for about $200 a sample.
Big Data and analytics startup Sociocast raised $1 million in funding from Raptor Ventures. Sociocast’s flagship product, Prediction API, uses data to make predictions in two categories: entities and clustering.
Astronomers and cancer researchers at the University of Cambridge have joined forces to study breast tumors using image analysis software previously developed to explore distant stars. The automated system offers a speedy way to examine tissue samples, and will be fine-tuned in a study of more than 20,000 breast cancer patients.
CyberDoctor’s Direct Connection Application
Akhila Satish once spent a summer answering phone calls at a medical office, where she learned a lot. Specifically she learned about the patients who would call in and not hold back when it came to detailing their symptoms and ailments. Satish would sit on the other end of the line until she could break in with a few words.
“You have to say, ‘I’m so sorry, I can’t give you medical information but let me write that all down and give it off to a nurse.’ And they would just be incensed. And I could understand why,” she said.
Those are the kinds of phone calls Satish, CEO of CyberDoctor, wants to eliminate through her company’s work. CyberDoctor developed an online form that delivers patient-reported symptom information directly to a clinician. The form is both meant to make sure that a patient’s message isn’t lost when passed along to a doctor and that patients are describing their symptoms in a logical way. The application, called Symptom Scan, is designed to take two minutes to fill out. (See the above video or go to Health 2.0 TV for a Deep Dive demo of the CyberDoctor software.)
The company just completed a successful MedStartr campaign last month. Though the fundraising goal was only $2,500, the project was a way for the company to reach out to patients and raise support rather than to raise substantial capital. CyberDoctor actually sells its software to practices. But since patients receive external benefits ― like the convenience of being able to quickly reach a doctor ― the company makes a point of asking patients to nominate their physicians for the service.
One of the end goals of using the software over time is to be able to tell which factors are driving individual practices’ efficiency and which are deterring it. CyberDoctor records all of the history from Symptom Scan as well as from a second application called Treatment Tracker, which patients use to log their compliance information. Satish said that among her primary objectives is to be able to show a practice how access to compliance information ultimately influences outcomes.
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s Health Data Platform (HDP) challenges were designed to create new functionalities for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ repository for open health data, HealthData.gov. The site is dedicated to making high value health data more accessible to entrepreneurs, researchers, and policy makers in the hopes of better health outcomes for all. Over the past month, judges have been evaluating challenge submissions and have selected the winners who will receive $70,000 in combined prizes.
THE METADATA CHALLENGE
The Metadata Challenge was launched on June 5, 2023 in order to facilitate the application of common metadata standards to all open government data. Additionally, the challenge sought to improve designs for health specific metadata. The challenge entries were judged on the number of metadata and data sets the app was designed to accommodate, the use of open source software and the incorporation of best practices.
For the HDP Metadata challenge, Tetherless World Constellation (TWC) from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) won the $20,000 first place award with an application that leveraged the healthdata.gov CKAN API (Application Programming Interface) and the complete catalog of datasets on healthdata.gov to create multiple resources for organizing data and automating many of the data processes. TWC presented a set of in-house developed tools enabling the discovery of, access to, and integration of the Health and Human Services’ datasets as Linked Government Data.
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We are excited to announce that the Health Data Initiative (HDI) Forum IV: Health Datapalooza will be held on June 3 and 4, 2013 at the OMNI Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC. Last year, HDI had over 1,400 of the world’s leaders in health care featuring speakers and attendees in data science, software development, management, policy and technology.
The event will highlight the latest trends in efforts to liberate health data and effectively use it, through keynote presentations, code-a-thons, interactive panels and an “Apps Expo.” The “Apps Expo” is an exciting opportunity to collaborate with innovative developers and designers who are changing the health care landscape.
HDI IV is looking for great apps that are dedicated to meaningful use of health care data. The apps’ developers and data experts will interact with attendees who are looking for new tools to grow their business. If you’re interested in featuring your product in the “Apps Expo” or if you would like to present or exhibit at Healthdatapalooza please submit your idea here. Apps will be judged on the following criteria:
- The extent to which the application or activity uses health data (does not have to be publicly available data)
- How the application addresses an explicit problem or health issue
- Whether the application is newly created (developed within the past 12 months) or, if exhibited during last year’s Datapalooza, features enhanced capabilities
- Whether the application has demonstrated utility (improved health outcomes, reduction in health care costs, etc.)
- Whether the application has a sustainability plan or future plan of use
Register now and don’t miss out on one of the leading health care tech events of the year.
The Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York reported that its Epic EHR achieved a 56% reduction in Medicare readmissions. It also improved quality measures such as discharge instructions for patients and antibiotic administration prior to surgery.
Cloud-based EHR and HIS hospital vendor, RazorInsights, secured $11 million in Series A funding from Bluff Point Associates. Since launching in December 2010, RazorInsights has dealt primarily in the Rural and Critical Access hospital segment.
Patient portal provider HealthCare Anytime and Informatics Corporation of America, a health information exchange platform, partnered to improve patient engagement. The partnership allows secure capture and distribution of clinical data between multiple systems for patient viewing.
Telehealth company INRange Systems raised $1.6 million for its Electronic Medication Management System (EMMA). EMMA administers single medication doses to patients and transmits adherence data to physicians and pharmacists.
Fitness company Wahoo launched the world’s only iPhone powered cycling computer that can be installed on the bicycle handlebar and syncs with data from the rider’s iPhone.
A study of young adults ages 18 to 25 found that avatar-based intervention for self-management of depression significantly reduces depressive symptoms in participants over the course of three months. The avatar program, called eSMART-MH, is a promising opportunity for depression management.
Smartphone app maker Ping4, Inc. raised $4 million in private placement for its weather safety alert product, Ping4alerts. The app provides highly localized alerts about weather and other emergencies and can be used to locate victims without needing any other information.
New York-based medical informatics company ZyDoc received funding from National Library of Medicine for a study involving ZyDoc’s MediSapien knowledge management platform. The study compares documentation quality, efficiency, and user satisfaction of EHR data capture involving MediSapien NLP (natural language processing) with results from other standard methods.
iMPak Health, designer of mobile health applications, will use HealthSaaS‘s cloud-based Connected Outcomes Platform for integrating patient data into clinical workflow. The platform gives providers secure access to patient data.
SimplifyMD launched its SimpleStart program that will allow practices to move from EHR demo to live clinical use on the same day. The SaaS EHR mirrors a practice’s existing charts and forms, so medical practitioners and staff use the documents they already know.
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Syapse Is Creating Single Patient Genomic Profiles from Many Data Sources
The exposome is the measure of how individuals’ lifetime exposures from environment, diet and other sources interact with their unique makeup to impact their health. Neuroscientist Jonathan Hirsch hadn’t heard of “the exposome” until members of an academic research site recently told him that they wanted to use his platform to capture it.
Almost since Hirsch founded Syapse he’s gotten requests to make his application work with types of data he hadn’t originally pictured it working with. Syapse develops software that helps diagnostic companies as well as providers make sense of genomic, proteomic, immunomic and other complex data. As a group, these data types are referred to as omic data, named for their suffix.
More generally, the startup’s original software was first created to better structure biomedical data. That was until Syapse deployed its first app, and it was clear that users wanted it to do something that’s incredibly complicated to do right now ― that is to put certain complex data types to direct medical use.
Very few people today get their whole genome sequenced, so it’s rare that doctors have that kind of information to work with when determining a patient’s treatment plan. However breast cancer patients, for example, have their tumor genotyped several times throughout their course of treatment because as the cancer mutates, their therapy has to change. This generates a lot of data. Whole genome sequencing, which will soon be available for greater numbers of patients, generates even more.
Technology companies are working to analyze the huge sets of raw data produced from sequencing. The next step, where Syapse comes in, is to help professionals figure out how this information should be applied to an individual’s treatment. This requires that a doctor understand a patient’s omics within the context of the rest of his or her medical data. One of Syapse’s applications, which is in private beta, converges omics data with electronic health record data and more.
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