[kaltura-widget uiconfid="1806402" entryid="0_enyn6hah" width="400" height="360" addpermission="" editpermission="" /] IBM and BCBSMA Deliver New IT SolutionThe healthcare industry looks dramatically different than it did a year ago, giving rise to new opportunities for improvement all around—from how doctors capture and share medical information to how health insurance companies manage their costs. IBM is at the epicenter of this transformation working with many of the major hospital systems and a large number of health insurance providers to navigate a new landscape and deliver on the promise of “Smarter Healthcare”.
Today, IBM is announcing it has been tapped by another major health plan organization, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (BCBSMA), to revamp its entire information technology (IT) infrastructure, encompassing everything from data center management to overseeing the applications portfolio. Central to the project is the primary member Web site, bluecrossma.com that is designed to provide BCBSMA’s nearly 3 million members fast and secure online access to claims and general healthcare information. The new agreement is expected to generate approximately $16 million annually in savings for BCBSMA.
“The big driver for choosing IBM was the breadth and depth of capabilities IBM brings to the table,” said Bill Fandrich, chief information officer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. “The IBM team proved over and over again their ability to bring different products and integrate them onto one platform. IBM provides a lot of flexibility for us to leverage IBM’s partners, whether it’s for development or whether it’s for other product capabilities. It’s very important in this day and age when we’re trying to bring solutions to the market that we have an IT provider that’s looking at things from the lens of what we need, not just at what they can sell us.”
BCBSMA is among several major health plan organizations that have recently turned to IBM. Kaiser Permanente last year tapped IBM to deploy smart systems and activate its highly sophisticated global delivery network to provide patients, members and physicians real-time access to medical data and tools whenever and wherever they need it. Similarly, IBM is working with National Account Service Company LLC (NASCO) to manage its entire IT system as well as work with IBM Research to modernize its claim processing system. IBM is working with CIGNA in a multi-year strategy to place an entirely new focus on improving customers’ experience, including tapping customer information to make interactions with the company more personalized. More recently, IBM signed a deal with athenahealth Inc., a leading provider of Internet-based business services for physician practices. IBM will enable athenahealth to focus its resources on simplifying and improving administrative and reimbursement processes while reducing staff workload, allowing physicians to focus on delivering higher quality care to their patients.
The work that IBM is doing is hardly limited to the healthcare in the US. For example, in China, by integrating data from health records that combine Eastern and Western medicine and applying sophisticated analytics, doctors and nurses at Guang Dong Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine can figure out which treatment plans and techniques from each approach work best for specific diseases and medical conditions. In Italy, the Rizzoli Institute is transforming treatment of hereditary bone disease by using analytics while Europe’s non-profit research alliance EuResist Network GEIE, is working with IBM to improve treatment for HIV patients using a prediction engine that simulates the intervention of HIV treatment drugs within the human body.
While other companies are making claims about helping shape the future of healthcare, IBM is actually doing it. IBM is making systems “smarter” for healthcare payers and providers as they are faced with new pressures to improve efficiency and create new business models to serve their clients while holding the line on costs. IBM is helping companies transition from outdated IT environments to more modernized systems capable of analyzing data and predicting errors, as well as integrating data so doctors, patients and insurers can share information seamlessly, securely and efficiently. IBM is creating a smarter, more connected healthcare system that delivers better care for everyone involved.