MD Anderson and Cognitive Scale partner to deliver patient-centered care
LAS VEGAS – February 23, 2015: IBM InterConnect 2015 – The IBM InterConnect 2015 Conference kicked off with an opening session featuring Dr. Lynda Chin, Head of Genomics at MD Anderson, a Cognitive Scale customer. InterConnect is IBM’s premier conference for Cloud, Mobile and Analytics and is attended by 21,000 IT and Business professionals according to Robert LeBlanc, SVP for Cloud at IBM.
Dr. Chin, a firm advocate of technology enabling better health outcomes, believes that next generation healthcare systems will democratize the delivery of personalized, evidence-based and patient-centered care to an increasing number of patients suffering from cancer and chronic diseases.
In a fireside chat with Mike Rhodin, SVP, IBM Watson, Dr. Chin, shared the current challenges that cancer patients face today and how technology is helping improve the delivery of care.
The healthcare industry is experiencing an explosion of information, which has given us more opportunities than ever to treat illness, but the data overload has also meant that doctors and care providers are unable to keep up. By 2020, medical information will double every 73 days. Patients and healthcare systems are generating millions of data points on their internal computer networks, across the Web and on mobile devices. These can include patient records, EMRs, lab and imaging systems results, physicians’ notes, medical device data, and streaming social data feeds.
Accessing this valuable data is critical to providing personalized care, improving outcomes, incentivizing the right behavior, and driving efficiencies throughout the healthcare industry. Yet the ability to uncover relevant and timely insight to achieve those results is not easy due the rapid accumulation of data, the inability to uncover the relevant insight from the data, and proactively identify patterns that signal potential health issues.
Patients who struggle from chronic diseases like cancer are under tremendous emotional stress and physical pain. They struggle with diet, medication and scheduling concerns. In addition, they must also make lifestyle choices from finding the right places to eat, areas to live that is convenient for their treatment, transportation and activities that meet their needs.
On the other side Care Managers spend a considerable amount of time gathering information to help make the patient experience more personal and effective. Helping care managers find information about their patients and providing patients with timely and relevant insights goes a long way towards enhancing the patient experience.
MD Anderson turned to Cognitive Scale as part of a larger effort to provide patient-centric, world-class care
Specifically, MD Anderson uses Cognitive Scale’s Care Concierge application which is built around visibility, discovery, prediction, recommendation, and learning. It creates patient profiles that are fueled with multi-structured data from clinical and non-clinical systems, social, private and public sources to provide personalized, contextualized and tailored insight to patients, their families, and their care managers. It is built using Cognitive Scale’s “Insights Fabric™”, the platform that delivers the healthcare Cognitive Cloud.
Innovative patient care through the Cognitive Cloud
Care Concierge helps make their onsite experience better by including information such as local restaurants featuring menu items that align with the patient’s dietary needs and also pulls in content from MD Anderson Integrated Medicine. It also features MapQuest, Weather.com, and activities and event listings from the Greater Houston Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, the app supports e-commerce, providing an additional revenue stream for local businesses.
Care Concierge is currently being integrated into myMDA, a unified portal where patients can privately and securely connect with individual healthcare providers, care managers, or their medical team to ask questions and quickly receive answers from a vast pool of verified medical knowledge. They can also log their diet and activities and receive alerts when it’s time to take a prescription. The app is personalized to the patient’s specific healthcare needs and is contextually aware of the patient’s conditions including recent test results, chronic illnesses, dietary issues, and allergies, for example.
All of these individual health data points are factored into the personalized recommendations that are based on declared, observed and inferred preferences and patient interactions with myMDA. Also, since the app remembers questions and preferences and is continuously updated, this ensures the information is always current while the app continues to get smarter and more personalized each time it is used. myMDA is fully compliant with industry and federal privacy regulations including HIPAA.
This also helps care managers who are the single focal point for patients track, highlight and respond in real time to patients key requirements instead of undertaking time consuming manual and online searches.
Accelerating Wellness and Striving to Achieve The Mission
The insights gained from the use of these innovative technologies will transform healthcare by enabling the secure, shared knowledge and collaboration to medical professionals around the world.
For example, Dr Chin also talked about IBM Watson’s Oncology Expert Advisor (OEA), which is a system that democratizes the information that experts know, and continuously learns. Now medical professionals from almost anywhere can tap into a collective pool of knowledge, experience and patient data to make the best recommendations on behalf of their patients while accelerating recovery.
When asked whether machines can replace experts, she said it is unlikely as these systems require medical professionals to train them and these systems will augment and enable the experts further and not serve as a substitute for specialized care.
The work that’s underway at MD Anderson is certainly groundbreaking. And we believe that it’s the first of many healthcare innovations driven by cognitive cloud technology that we, as technologists and people, are fortunate enough to see up close. Perhaps the continued, rapid pace of innovation will bring us all together in this lifetime to celebrate, along with MD Anderson, when they do achieve their mission.