Click the image to launch streaming video of Sam Palmisano’s speech
by Lonne A. Jaffe
At the 2009 Medical Innovation Summit in Cleveland on Tuesday, IBM’s CEO Sam Palmisano spoke about smarter healthcare — enabled by new intelligence streaming in from countless instrumented and interconnected chips, sensors and devices, giving us real-time insight into clinical and administrative healthcare.
To harness the power of all of this information, healthcare analytics plays a critical role. Healthcare analytics is about converting massive amounts of healthcare data into usable intelligence to improve treatment, health and wellness programs, research, and administrative processes.
The first step is to gather information from multiple sources into one place. This gives health care providers, researchers and administrators a 360-degree view of medical history, clinical treatment patterns, costs, and outcomes.
The second step is to apply sophisticated technology to the data, such as clinical decision support, chronic disease management, benchmarking/quality reporting, predictive analytics, etc.
One example of healthcare provider doing deep analytics is at the University of North Carolina Health Care (UNCHC). The Carolina Data Warehouse for Health enables UNCHC medical researchers to analyze de-identified patient data, uncovering trends in a matter of seconds. This helps researchers with clinical trial recruitment and trend analysis, helps clinicians improve treatment, and helps administrators improve efficiency and cost — and has already proven its value in diabetes, cystic fibrosis and cancer treatment and research.
In China, a first-of-a-kind system built initially by IBM’s China Research Lab, enables sharing of electronic medical records across traditional Chinese medicine and modern western medicine environments, allowing healthcare practitioners to more deeply understand which treatment plans and techniques from each environment work best for specific diseases and medical conditions. This system is now being enhanced by IBM’s software lab in China to allow for broader commercial use.
This year IBM opened the Global Healthcare Centre of Excellence at the IBM Business Solutions Centre in La Gaude, France, giving IBM’s customers and business partners hands-on access to our healthcare solutions built on the IBM Health Integration Framework platform.
As the healthcare industry undergoes dramatic transformations across the world, healthcare analytics will play an increasingly important role in providing physicians, researchers, administrators, and patients access to a new level of intelligence.
That’s smarter healthcare.
Lonne Jaffe is Director, Public Sector Solutions, IBM Software