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Microsoft and Nuance join forces in quest to help doctors turn their focus back to patients

Imagine a visit to your doctor’s office in which your physician asks you how you’ve been feeling, whether your medication is working or if the shoulder pain from an old fall is still bothering you — and his or her focus is entirely on you and that conversation.

The doctor is looking at you, not at a computer screen. He or she isn’t moving a mouse around hunting for an old record or pecking on the keyboard to enter a diagnosis code.

This sounds like an ideal scenario, but as most people know from their own visits to the doctor, it’s far from the norm today.

But experts say that in an exam room of the future enhanced by artificial intelligence, the doctor would be able to call up a lab result or prescribe a new medicine with a simple voice command. She or he wouldn’t be distracted by entering symptoms into your electronic health record (EHR). And at the end of the visit, the essential elements of the conversation would have been securely captured and distilled into concise documentation that can be shared with nurses, specialists, insurance companies or anyone else you’ve entrusted with your care.

A new strategic partnership between Microsoft and Nuance Communications Inc. announced today will work to accelerate and deliver this level of ambient clinical intelligence to exam rooms, allowing ambient sensing and conversational AI to take care of some of the more burdensome administrative tasks and to provide clinical documentation that writes itself. That, in turn, will allow doctors to turn their attention fully to taking care of patients.

Of course, there are still immense technical challenges to getting to that ideal scenario of the future. But the companies say they believe that they already have a strong foundation in features from Nuance’s ambient clinical intelligence (ACI) technology unveiled earlier this year and Microsoft’s Project EmpowerMD Intelligent Scribe Service. Both are using AI technologies to learn how to convert doctor-patient conversations into useful clinical documentation, potentially reducing errors, saving doctors’ time and improving the overall physician experience.

“Physicians got into medicine because they wanted to help and heal people, but they are spending a lot of their time today outside of the care process,” said Joe Petro, Nuance executive vice president and chief technology officer. “They’re entering in data to make sure the appropriate bill can be generated. They’re capturing insights for population health and quality measures. And although this data is all important, it’s really outside a physician’s core focus on treating that patient.”

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Primary care doctors spend two hours on administrative tasks for every hour they’re involved in direct patient care, studies have shown. If they don’t capture a patient’s complaint or treatment plan during or shortly after an exam, that documentation burden will snowball as the day goes on. In another recent study, physicians reported one to two hours of after-hours work each night, mostly related to administrative tasks.

This shift to digital medical record keeping and so-called ‘meaningful use’ regulations is well-intentioned and has provided some important benefits, said Dr. Ranjani Ramamurthy, senior director at Microsoft Healthcare who leads the company’s EmpowerMD research.

People no longer have to worry about not being able to read a doctor’s handwriting or information that never makes it into the right paper file. But the unintended consequence has been that doctors are sometimes forced to focus on their computers and administrative tasks instead of their patients, she said.

After starting her career in computer science, Ramamurthy went back to school to get a medical degree and pursue cancer research. But as she walked the halls of the hospital every day, she couldn’t help thinking that she was missing an opportunity to use her background to create tech solutions that could reinvigorate the doctor-patient relationship.

Ramamurthy noted that most physicians got into healthcare because they want to use their skills and expertise to treat patients, not to feel tethered to their keyboards.

“We need to work on building frictionless systems that take care of the doctors so they can do what they do best, which is take care of patients,” she said.

Built on Microsoft Azure — and working in tandem with the EHR — this new technology will marry the two companies’ strengths in developing ambient sensing and conversational AI solutions. Those include ambient listening with patient consent, wake-up word, voice biometrics, signal enhancement, document summarization, natural language understanding, clinical intelligence and text-to-speech.

Nuance is a leading provider of AI-powered clinical documentation and decision-making support for physicians. Leveraging deep strategic partnerships with the major providers of EHRs, the company has spent decades developing medically relevant speech recognition and processing solutions such as its Dragon Medical One platform, which allows doctors to easily and naturally enter a patient’s story and relevant information into an EHR using dictation. Nuance conversational AI technologies are already used by more than 500,000 physicians worldwide, as well as in 90 percent of U.S. hospitals.

Microsoft brings deep research investments in AI and partner-driven healthcare technologies, commercial relationships with nearly 170,000 healthcare organizations, and enterprise-focused cloud and AI services that accelerate and enable scalable commercial solutions. Earlier this month, for instance, Microsoft announced a strategic collaboration to combine its AI technology with Novartis’ deep life sciences expertise to address challenges in developing new drugs.

In other areas, Azure Cognitive Services offers easy-to-deploy AI tools for speech recognition, computer vision and language understanding, and trusted Azure cloud services can support the user’s compliance with privacy and regulatory requirements for healthcare organizations.

As part of the agreement, Nuance will migrate the majority of its current on-site internal infrastructure and hosted products to Microsoft Azure. Nuance already is a Microsoft Office 365 customer for its more than 8,500 employees worldwide, empowering them with the latest in collaboration and communications tools, including Microsoft Teams.


“We need to work on building frictionless systems that take care of the doctors so they can do what they do best, which is take care of patients.”

~ Dr. Ranjani Ramamurthy, senior director at Microsoft Healthcare


“Just capturing a conversation between two people has been a thorny technical problem for a long time, and a lot of companies have attempted to crack it,” Petro said. “This partnership brings two trusted healthcare superpowers together to solve some of the most difficult challenges and also to leverage the most innovative advances we’ve made in AI, speech and natural language processing.”

The companies will expand upon Nuance’s early success with ACI and expect the technology to be introduced to an initial set of physician specialties in early 2020, and then it will be expanded to numerous other medical specialties over the next few years, Petro said. Initially, the ACI output may be checked by a remote reviewer with medical expertise to provide an important quality check and produce additional training data for the AI models. Once the system has proven its accuracy for a given physician, the ACI documentation will go directly to that physician, who can review it, make any necessary revisions and sign off on a treatment plan all in real-time, Petro said.

With a patient’s consent, ACI is designed to securely ingest and synthesize patient-doctor conversations, integrate that data with information from an EHR, populate a patient’s chart and also help the EHR deliver intelligent recommendations to the doctor.

With innovations in multi-party speech recognition, language understanding and computer vision, these tools can listen to the encounter between the doctor and a patient who grants consent, sense whether they’re pointing to a left knee or right knee when verbally describing a particular pain, extract medically relevant details and translate what just occurred in the exam room into actionable clinical documentation and care suggestions.

“Moving forward, we recognize that reducing the burden of clinical documentation is just the beginning,” said Dr. Greg Moore, Microsoft’s corporate vice president for health technology and alliances. “As the core AI improves and becomes more capable, it will be able to understand much more deeply what is going on by observing doctors and nurses in their day to day work. Ambient clinical intelligence will be able to work in tandem with the EHR to help convert those observations into supportive, augmenting actions.”

For instance, an AI-enabled system can learn to recognize when a doctor is talking to a patient about a new medication, and it can automatically review past conversations as well as the patient’s history to reduce the risk of a drug interaction or allergic reaction. Or it can mine a patient’s complicated medical history with new reported symptoms and offer suggestions for potential diagnoses for the doctor to consider.

In addition, the two companies will open up the ACI platform to an ecosystem of partners than can bring other highly valuable AI innovations to the exam room or at the bedside where the ambient sensing device will be present.

“We want ambient clinical intelligence to assist the EHR in delivering recommendations at the time when it matters — not three days later on your patient portal or when a nurse follows up, but when the doctor and patient are face to face and when that information can actually inform care,” Ramamurthy said.

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Nuance and Microsoft partner to transform the doctor-patient experience

Strategic partnership accelerates the delivery of ambient technologies to reduce clinician burnout by enabling doctors to focus on patients, while AI focuses on administrative tasks

BURLINGTON, Mass., and REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 17, 2019 Nuance Communications Inc. and Microsoft Corp. on Thursday announced they have joined forces to help transform healthcare delivery for a more sustainable future. Together, the companies will accelerate the delivery of ambient clinical intelligence (ACI) technologies that will power the exam room of the future where clinical documentation writes itself.

The Nuance-Microsoft partnership brings together leading technologies from both companies:

  • Nuance’s healthcare-optimized speech recognition and processing solutions such as its Dragon Medical platform already used by more than 500,000 physicians worldwide; advanced conversational AI for ambient clinical documentation and decision support; voice biometrics; and specialized ambient sensing hardware
  • Microsoft Azure, Azure AI and Project EmpowerMD Intelligent Scribe Service backed with advanced conversational AI and natural language understanding

“The Microsoft partnership will accelerate our ability to solve for healthcare’s most pressing challenges — together,” said Mark Benjamin, Nuance CEO. “The ambient technologies we will jointly deliver can improve productivity and professional satisfaction, while empowering doctors to focus on what they do best: take care of patients.”

Physician burnout is at epidemic levels. A recent study shows that primary care doctors now spend two hours on administrative tasks for every hour they’re involved in direct patient care. Physicians reported one to two hours of after-hours work each night, mostly related to administrative tasks.

Microsoft CEO, Satya Nadella, said, “We have an incredible opportunity to use advances in cloud and AI technology to transform healthcare delivery. Together with Nuance, we will apply the power of Azure and Azure AI to this challenge, with the aim of improving the day-to-day life of firstline healthcare workers everywhere — so they can provide better care.”

Working in tandem with long-term electronic health record (EHR) partners to develop the technology, ACI will deliver a seamless and engaging interaction between clinicians and patients. Through patient consent, ACI will synthesize patient-clinician conversations, integrate that data with contextual information from the EHR, and auto-populate the patient’s medical record in the system.

“Physician burnout has become one of the most important concerns facing the healthcare industry today,” said Dr. James Linder, Nebraska Medicine CEO. “We’re excited about the early results of ACI to help clinicians focus more on patients. We look forward to the innovations our two trusted partners, Nuance and Microsoft, will deliver together.”

The companies will expand upon Nuance’s early success with ACI and expect to introduce the technology to an initial set of physician specialties in early 2020. Built on Microsoft Azure, this new technology will marry the two companies’ strengths in developing ambient sensing and conversational AI solutions, including ambient listening, wake-up word, voice biometrics, signal enhancement, document summarization, natural language understanding, clinical intelligence and text-to-speech.

As part of the agreement, Nuance will migrate the majority of its current on-premises internal infrastructure and hosted products to Microsoft Azure. Nuance already is a Microsoft Office 365 customer for its more than 8,500 employees worldwide, empowering them with the latest in collaboration and communications tools, including Microsoft Teams.

About Nuance Healthcare

Nuance provides intelligent systems that support a more natural and insightful approach to clinical documentation, freeing clinicians to spend more time caring for patients. Nuance healthcare solutions capture, improve, and communicate more than 300 million patient stories each year, helping more than 500,000 clinicians in 10,000 global healthcare organizations to drive meaningful clinical and financial outcomes. Nuance’s award-winning clinical speech recognition, medical transcription, CDI, coding, quality, and medical imaging solutions provide a more complete and accurate view of patient care.

About Nuance Communications Inc.

Nuance Communications (NASDAQ: NUAN) is the pioneer and leader in conversational AI innovations that bring intelligence to everyday work and life. The company delivers solutions that understand, analyze, and respond to people – amplifying human intelligence to increase productivity and security. With decades of domain and AI expertise, Nuance works with thousands of organizations globally across healthcare, financial services, telecommunications, government, and retail – to empower a smarter, more connected world. For more information, please visit www.nuance.com.

About Microsoft

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

For more information, press only:
Microsoft Media Relations, WE Communications for Microsoft, (425) 638-7777, rrt@we-worldwide.com

Nuance Media Relations, ReviveHealth for Nuance, (716) 553-3882, nuance@thinkrevivehealth.com

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Dr. David Rhew named chief medical officer and vice president of Healthcare

Dr David Rhew sitting in a gardenDr David Rhew sitting in a gardenThe healthcare industry is in the middle of an exciting transformation as the cloud, AI, and technology innovations unlock new efficiencies in healthcare delivery and discover new breakthroughs in scientific exploration. For Microsoft to enable our customers and partners during this transformation, it’s important that we continue to recruit experts in this field who truly understand the challenges of healthcare delivery and operations across the spectrum of the industry’s physical and digital realms.

I’m pleased to share that David Rhew, M.D., has joined our Worldwide Commercial Business (WCB) Healthcare leadership team as the Chief Medical Officer and Vice President of Healthcare.

David joins us from Samsung, where he spent six years leading the company’s healthcare efforts as Chief Medical Officer and Vice President for Enterprise Healthcare. He was recently named one of Modern Healthcare’s 50 Most Influential Clinical Executive Leaders, and also serves as an adjunct professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

In addition, David is a computer scientist who holds six U.S. patents related to clinical decision support systems and the interoperability and integration of data in electronic health records (EHRs). An internationally recognized digital health thought leader, David has been a driving force behind the development, validation, and deployment of digital health solutions recognized by global organizations such as the Consumer Technology Association and the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Culture as being some of the most innovative and impactful in the industry.

David will provide executive-level support, engaging in business opportunities with our customers and partners. In addition, David will represent the company within the marketplace through industry events and engagements. With his cross-discipline expertise and his keen ability to engage, listen, and collaborate, David’s work with our customer and partners will ensure our commercial healthcare business delivers the right technologies and capabilities to reimagine the industry.

“Data are quickly becoming the new currency in healthcare. Organizations that create value through secure storage, clinical interpretation, and the seamless exchange of data between patients and providers are emerging as the new leaders. Microsoft is positioned to lead in this capacity. I am honored to be a part of the team that builds and grows this business.”  – David Rhew, Chief Medical Officer, Microsoft Worldwide Commercial Business

At Microsoft, we’re continuing to learn and grow every day from the extensive set of partnerships that we have had in healthcare: more than 168,000 healthcare organizations in 140 countries. I am excited to have David join our Microsoft family to help our customers and partners realize their vision!

Read more about Microsoft’s work with Healthcare organizations from our e-book “Personalizing Healthcare: Engaging Patients in a Digital Age.”

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Microsoft and cloud counterparts unite on frictionless exchange of health data, boosting patient care

This post was co-authored by Heather Jordan Cartwright, General Manager, Microsoft Healthcare

Cloud computing is rapidly becoming a bigger and more central part of the infrastructure of healthcare. We see this as a historic shift that motivates us to think hard about how to ensure that, in this cloud-based future, interoperable health data is available as needed and without friction.

Microsoft continues to build health data interoperability into the core of the Azure cloud, empowering developers and partners to easily build data-rich health apps with the Azure API for FHIR®. We are also actively contributing to healthcare community with open source software like the FHIR Server for Azure, bringing together developers on collaborative solutions that move the industry forward.

We take interoperability seriously. At last summer’s CMS Blue Button Developer Conference, we made a public commitment to promote the frictionless exchange of health data with our counterparts at AWS, Google, IBM, Salesforce and Oracle. That commitment remains strong.

Today, at the same conference of health IT community leaders, we are sharing a joint announcement that showcases how we have moved from principles and commitment to actions. Our activities over the past year include open-source software releases, development of new standards and implementation guides, and deployment of services that support U.S. federal interoperability mandates.

Here’s the full text of our joint announcement:


As healthcare evolves across the globe, so does our ability to improve the health and wellness of communities. Patients, providers, and health plans are striving for more value-based care, more engaging user experiences, and broader application of machine learning to assist clinicians in diagnosis and patient care.

Too often, however, patient data are inconsistently formatted, incomplete, unavailable, or missing – which can limit access to the best possible care. Equipping patients and caregivers with information and insights derived from raw data has the potential to yield significantly better outcomes. But without a robust network of clinical information, even the best people and technology may not reach their potential.

Interoperability requires the ability to share clinical information across systems, networks, and care providers. Barriers to data interoperability sit at the core of many process problems. We believe that better interoperability will unlock improvements in individual and population-level care coordination, delivery, and management. As such, we support efforts from ONC and CMS to champion greater interoperability and patient access.

This year’s proposed rules focus on the use of HL7® FHIR® (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) as an open standard for electronically exchanging healthcare information. FHIR builds on concepts and best-practices from other standards to define a comprehensive, secure, and semantically-extensible specification for interoperability. The FHIR community features multidisciplinary collaboration and public channels where developers interact and contribute.

We’ve been excited to use and contribute to many FHIR-focused, multi-language tools that work to solve real-world implementation challenges. We are especially proud to highlight a set of open-source tools including: Google’s FHIR protocol buffers and Apigee Health APIx, Microsoft’s FHIR Server for Azure, Cerner’s FHIR integration for Apache Spark, a serverless reference architecture for FHIR APIs on AWS, Salesforce/Mulesoft’s Catalyst Accelerator for Healthcare templates, and IBM’s Apache Spark service.

Beyond the production of new tools, we have also proudly participated in developing new specifications including the Bulk Data $export operation (and recent work on an $import operation), Subscriptions, and analytical SQL projections. All of these capabilities demonstrate the strength and adaptability of the FHIR specification. Moreover, through connectathons, community events, and developer conferences, our engineering teams are committed to the continued improvement of the FHIR ecosystem. Our engineering organizations have previously supported the maturation of standards in other fields and we believe FHIR version R4 — a normative release — provides an essential and appropriate target for ongoing investments in interoperability.

We have seen the early promise of standards-based APIs from market leading Health IT systems, and are excited about a future where such capabilities are universal. Together, we operate some of the largest technical infrastructure across the globe serving many healthcare and non-healthcare systems alike. Through that experience, we recognize the scale and complexity of the task at hand. We believe that the techniques required to meet the objectives of ONC and CMS are available today and can be delivered cost-effectively with well-engineered systems.

As a technology community, we believe that a forward-thinking API strategy as outlined in the proposed rules will advance the ability for all organizations to build and deploy novel applications to the benefit of patients, care providers, and administrators alike. ONC and CMS’s continued leadership, thoughtful rules, and embrace of open standards help move us decisively in that direction.

Signed,
Amazon, Google, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, and Salesforce


The positive collaboration on open FHIR standards and the urgency for data interoperability have strengthened our commitment to an open-source-first approach in healthcare technology. We continue to incorporate feedback from the community to develop new features, and are actively identifying new places where open source software can help accelerate interoperability.

Support from the ONC and CMS in 2019 to adopt FHIR APIs as a foundation for clinical data interoperability will have a profound and positive effect on the industry. Looking forward, the application of FHIR to healthcare financial data including claims, explanation of benefit, insurance coverage, and network participation will continue to accelerate interoperability at scale and open new pathways for machine learning.

While it’s still early, we’ve seen our partners leveraging FHIR to better coordinate care, to develop innovative global health tracking systems for super-bacteria, and to proactively prevent the need for patients undergoing chemotherapy to be admitted to the emergency room. FHIR is providing a foundational platform on which our partners can drive rapid innovation, and it inspires us to work even harder to deliver technology that makes interoperable data a reality.

We’re just beginning to see what is possible in this new world of frictionless health data exchange, and we’d love for you to join us. If you want to participate, comment or learn more about FHIR, you can reach our FHIR Community chat here.

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How Microsoft 365 can help health providers adapt in an era of patient data protection and sharing

For years, patient data management meant one thing—secure the data. Now, healthcare leaders must protect and openly share the data with patients and with other healthcare organizations to support quality of care, patient safety, and cost reduction. As data flows more freely, following the patient, there’s less risk of redundant testing that increases cost and waste. Legacy infrastructure and cybersecurity concerns stand on the critical path to greater interoperability and patient record portability. Learn how Microsoft 365 can help.

Impact of regulatory changes and market forces

Regulatory changes are a big driver for this shift. Through regulations like the 21st Century Cures Act in the United States, healthcare organizations are required to improve their capabilities to protect and share patient data. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union expands the rights of data subjects over their data. Failing to share patient data in an effective, timely, and secure manner can result in significant penalties for providers and for healthcare payors.

Market forces are another driver of this shift as consumers’ expectations of omni-channel service and access spill over to healthcare. This augurs well for making the patient more central to data flows.

There are unintended consequences, however. The increasing need to openly share data creates new opportunities for hackers to explore, and new risks for health organizations to manage.

It’s more important than ever to have a data governance and proactive cybersecurity strategy that enables free data flow with an optimal security posture. In fact, government regulators will penalize healthcare organizations for non-compliance—and so will the marketplace.

How Microsoft 365 can prepare your organization for the journey ahead

Modernizing legacy systems and processes is a daunting, expensive task. Navigating a digitized but siloed information system is costly, impedes clinician workflow, and complicates patient safety goals.

To this end, Microsoft Teams enables the integration of electronic health record information and other health data, allowing care teams to communicate and collaborate about patient care in real-time. Leading interoperability partners continue to build the ability to integrate electronic health records into Teams through a FHIR interface. With Teams, clinical workers can securely access patient information, chat with other team members, and even have modern meeting experiences, all without having to switch between apps.

Incomplete data and documentation are among the biggest sources of provider and patient dissatisfaction. Clinicians value the ability to communicate with each other securely and swiftly to deliver the best informed care at point of care.

Teams now offers new secure messaging capabilities, including priority notifications and message delegation, as well as a smart camera with image annotation and secure sharing, so images stay in Teams and aren’t stored to the clinician’s device image gallery.

Image of phone screens showing priority notifications and message delegation.

What about cybersecurity and patient data? As legacy infrastructure gives way to more seamless data flow, it’s important to protect against a favorite tactic of cyber criminals—phishing.

Phishing emails—weaponized emails that appear to come from a reputable source or person—are increasingly difficult to detect. As regulatory pressure mounts within healthcare organizations to not “block” access to data, the risk of falling for such phishing attacks is expected to increase. To help mitigate this trend, Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) has a cloud-based email filtering service with sophisticated anti-phishing capabilities.

For example, Office 365 ATP provides real-time detonation capabilities to find and block unknown threats, including malicious links and attachments. Links in email are continuously evaluated for user safety. Similarly, any attachments in email are tested for malware and unsafe attachments are removed.

Image of a message appearing on a tablet screen showing a website that has been classified as malicious.

For data to flow freely, it’s important to apply the right governance and protection to sensitive data. And that is premised on appropriate data classification. Microsoft 365 helps organizations find and classify sensitive data across a variety of locations, including devices, apps, and cloud services with Microsoft Information Protection. Administrators need to know that sensitive data is accessed by authorized personnel only. Microsoft 365, through Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), enables capabilities like Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) and conditional access policies to minimize the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive patient information.

For example, if a user or device sign-in is tagged as high-risk, Azure AD can automatically enforce conditional access policies that can limit or block access or require the user to re-authenticate via MFA. Benefitting from the integrated signals of the Microsoft Intelligent Security Graph, Microsoft 365 solutions look holistically at the user sign-in behavior over time to assess risk and investigate anomalies where needed.

When faced with the prospect of internal leaks, Supervision in Microsoft 365 can help organizations monitor employees’ communications channels to manage compliance and reduce reputational risk from policy violations. As patient data is shared, tracking its flow is essential. Audit log and alerts in Microsoft 365 includes several auditing and reporting features that customers can use to track certain activity such as changes made to documents and other items.

Finally, as you conform with data governance regulatory obligations and audits, Microsoft 365 can assist you in responding to regulators. Advanced eDiscovery and Data Subject Requests (DSRs) capabilities offer the agility and efficiency you need when going through an audit, helping you find relevant patient data or respond to patient information requests.

Using the retention policies of Advanced Data Governance, you can retain core business records in unalterable, compliant formats. With records management capabilities, your core business records can be properly declared and stored with full audit visibility to meet regulatory obligations.

Learn more

Healthcare leaders must adapt quickly to market and regulatory expectations regarding data flows. Clinical and operations leaders depend on data flowing freely to make data-driven business and clinical decisions, to understand patterns in patient care and to constantly improve patient safety, quality of care, and cost management.

Microsoft 365 helps improve workflows through the integration power of Teams, moving the right data to the right place at the right time. Microsoft 365 also helps your security and compliance posture through advanced capabilities that help you manage and protect identity, data, and devices.

Microsoft 365 is the right cloud platform for you in this new era of patient data protection—and data sharing. Check out the Microsoft 365 for health page to learn more about how Microsoft 365 and Teams can empower your healthcare professionals in a modern workplace.

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How Patient.Info website uses Azure to keep its finger on the pulse of health in the UK

One of the biggest impacts of technology on healthcare has been the ability to turn your home into a basic GP surgery. Smartwatches can measure your heart rate, blood pressure and how many calories you’ve burnt; digital assistants can remind you to exercise; gadgets will help you monitor your asthma and cope with back pain; you can videochat with your doctor via your laptop. You can even buy smart shorts that log electrical activity in your muscles.

The gradual shift from calling a GP surgery to make an appointment and travelling there, to monitoring and managing conditions as part of your regular day – often online – is being welcomed at both ends of the phone line.

As one of the most popular medical websites in the UK, Patient.Info is at the forefront of this revolution. More than 100 million people logged on to the site in 2018 to read articles about healthcare, check symptoms and learn to live a healthier life.

Jason Keane, Chief Executive, says Patient.Info’s success and popularity is a result of the clear, accurate and reliable clinical information people find on the site, which has all been written by healthcare professionals.

“The objective is to empower people to make informed choices,” he says. “That’s about understanding the patient’s needs and offering them great content so they can manage their own care. It’s getting patients to the services they need. Patient.Info plays a critical role in not only being able to give people the ability to make informed choices, because the content is written and peer reviewed by GPs, but it makes the entire experience very safe and secure in one tool.”

<img width="4032" height="3024" src="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk.jpg" class="animate-viewport c-image" alt="Sarah Jarvis and Jason Keane" srcset="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk.jpg 4032w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-2.jpg 300w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-3.jpg 768w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-4.jpg 1600w" sizes="(max-width: 4032px) 100vw, 4032px" data-attachment-id="75200" data-permalink="https://news.microsoft.com/en-gb/features/patient-info-is-using-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-the-nations-health/sarahjason/" data-orig-file="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk.jpg" data-orig-size="4032,3024" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-image-title="sarahJason" data-image-description="

Sarah Jarvis and Jason Keane

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Sarah Jarvis and Jason Keane

A high level of safety and security is important when people are sharing personal information online, so Keane and Clinical Director Sarah Jarvis MBE took no chances and moved Patient.Info onto Azure, Microsoft’s cloud platform. They also use Power BI to quickly and easily understand all the information held in their Data Lake.

Moving to Azure also allows the website to cope with sudden surges in demand – during winter when flu is more prevalent, for example – as Azure will automatically free up more server space when needed.

“Our users need to have complete confidence in what we’re doing,” Keane adds. “We work with Microsoft because we know all of the data is in a very safe and secure environment. It’s the best technology out there to really make sure that all of that information is not only safe and secure but meets UK and EU law.”

Patient.Info grew out of an online health information director set up by Dr Tim Kenny and his wife, Dr Beverley Kenny, in 1996. Tim led a group of medical authors to produce a resource for medical staff and their patients.

It has evolved into an award-winning service led by Jarvis – a GP, former GP trainer and resident doctor for the Jeremy Vine show on BBC Radio 2 – that also produces a newsletter sent to 750,000 subscribers and around 3,200 leaflets for patients and doctors on health conditions and 850 on medicines, in addition to hundreds of editorial features, all medically peer reviewed and approved.

Its 23-year growth has been mirrored by a rise in demand for GPs and the services they provide in communities. In 2017, the British Medical Association warned that the NHS was at breaking point. There are around 34,000 GPs in the UK, but a report by the King’s Fund, Nuffield Trust and Health Foundation in March this year stated that the shortfall in the number of GPs is “so serious that it cannot be filled at all”.

The Government is drawing up a Green Paper on social care in the UK, with former Deputy PM Damian Green recommending new taxes on older people and a private insurance model to top up a universal level of state care.

Jarvis has been a GP since 1990, and has seen first-hand the demand levels rise.

“We know that we have a huge crisis in the number of GPs and healthcare provision across the UK, we know that the Department of Health is moving very long way towards trying to empower people to be in charge of their own conditions and to self-care,” she says. “We know that up to one-in-three people walking up to A&E does not need to be there, and about the same proportion in general practice. We need to engage patients; we know that up to half of medications are not taken as they should be, and that’s even more of an issue for patients who are taking what we call preventive medication.”

“So much of the work we do these days is proactive, it’s about keeping people healthy and stopping them from getting ill in the first place,” Jarvis says. “That means that it’s not remotely surprising given that we’re doing so much more for our patients, and that they’re getting older and that they have more long-term conditions, that GP workload has increased by about 50% in the past 10 to 12 years alone. We have to empower patients to self-manage if general practice is going to survive and be there when people need it.”

<img width="4000" height="2660" src="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-1.jpg" class="animate-viewport c-image" alt="Doctor talking to patient, shows laptop with hospital website on the screen" srcset="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-1.jpg 4000w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-5.jpg 300w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-6.jpg 768w, https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-7.jpg 1600w" sizes="(max-width: 4000px) 100vw, 4000px" data-attachment-id="73827" data-permalink="https://news.microsoft.com/en-gb/2018/12/04/scottish-research-company-aridhia-is-moving-to-azure-which-could-be-a-huge-boost-for-alzheimers-research/rawpixel-760103-unsplash/" data-orig-file="https://www.sickgaming.net/blog/wp-content/uploads/2019/07/how-patient-info-website-uses-azure-to-keep-its-finger-on-the-pulse-of-health-in-the-uk-1.jpg" data-orig-size="4000,2660" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"0","credit":"","camera":"","caption":"","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-image-title="rawpixel-760103-unsplash" data-image-description="

Doctor talking to patient, shows laptop with hospital website on the screen

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“So much of the work we do these days is proactive, it’s about keeping people healthy and stopping them from getting ill in the first place”

According to research published in 2017 in BMJ Open, the open access medical research journal, GP appointments in the UK last an average of 9.22 minutes. People in 28 countries, including the US (21.07 minutes), Switzerland (17 minutes), Belgium (15 minutes) and Sweden (22.5 minutes), spend longer with their doctor.

The challenge for GPs is to offer people the best possible care when they are seeing them for less than 10 minutes. Patient.Info is helping family doctors by giving them fast access to information they can trust, while they are in a room with a patient.

“Around 60% of the GPs in the country have access to the information on Patient.Info directly within their consulting systems, which they can trust completely because it was written by their peers and it’s been peer reviewed,” Jarvis adds. “They can read it on their screen while the patient is in the consultation. I’ve used Patient.Info for 20 years and it is such an invaluable part of my working life. A patient came in recently complaining of chest pain, shortness of breath and dizziness, and was convinced they were dying. I could immediately bring up the page on panic attacks, go through it with them and say, look at these symptoms, you’re having panic attacks.”

As people live longer, they develop more complex medical conditions that need to be managed. Whether it’s a website full of easy-to-read information or a leaflet, simplicity is key when a large proportion of the people who use NHS services are elderly. Azure is ensuring that no matter how technologically adept or otherwise someone is, they can still access the care they need.

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Microsoft and Providence St. Joseph Health announce strategic alliance to accelerate the future of care delivery

Providence St. Joseph Health, in partnership with Microsoft, will develop and deploy new health care technologies that will harness the power of Microsoft Azure and AI with clinical expertise to transform the care experience

RENTON, Wash., and REDMOND, Wash., July 8, 2019 – Microsoft Corp. and Providence St. Joseph Health today announced a multi-year strategic alliance to accelerate the digital transformation of health care. The alliance will combine the power of Microsoft’s cloud, artificial intelligence (AI), research capabilities, and collaboration tools with the clinical expertise and care environments of Providence St. Joseph Health, one of the largest health systems in the country.

The two organizations will develop a portfolio of integrated solutions designed to improve health outcomes and reduce the total cost of care by combining technologies from Microsoft with Providence St. Joseph Health’s data and clinical expertise. The alliance will accelerate the health care industry’s adoption of the cloud and enable data-driven clinical and operational decision-making by leveraging Microsoft Azure, and industry interoperability standards like FHIR, to integrate siloed data sources in a cloud environment that enables security and compliance.

Providence St. Joseph Health logoProvidence St. Joseph Health will deploy next-generation solutions and emerging technologies from Microsoft and its partners at a Providence St. Joseph Health-affiliated hospital facility in Seattle, Wash., near Microsoft’s Redmond headquarters. This site will enable modern clinical and operational experiences for both patients and providers. The goal will be to scale these innovations across the entire Providence St. Joseph Health system, in a transformation that will bring innovative and necessary solutions to more communities.

“Providence St. Joseph Health has been on a journey to transform health care and achieve a vision of health for a better world. We’re excited to accelerate that journey by collaborating with Microsoft. Together, we’ll support doctors, nurses and all caregivers by equipping them with innovative tools and technology that make it easier to do the vitally important work of improving lives,” said Rod Hochman, M.D., president and CEO of Providence St. Joseph Health.
Microsoft logo

“Our alliance with Providence St. Joseph Health brings together the expertise of one of the largest and most comprehensive health systems in the country with the power of Azure, Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “Our ambition is to accelerate Providence St. Joseph Health’s digital transformation and to build new innovations together that are designed to improve health care delivery and outcomes.”

As part of the strategic alliance, Providence St. Joseph Health will use Microsoft Azure as its preferred cloud platform and standardize productivity and collaboration tools for its 119,000 caregivers on Microsoft 365, and will continue to improve and support patient engagement using technologies including Dynamics 365. Providence St. Joseph Health doctors and nurses will use Microsoft Teams, which is part of the Microsoft 365 platform, for more secure communication and collaboration, enabling them to bring together chat, video meetings and conferencing, and line-of-business applications into a single hub.

About Providence St. Joseph Health
Providence St. Joseph Health is a national, not-for-profit Catholic health system comprising a diverse family of organizations and driven by a belief that health is a human right. With 51 hospitals, 829 physician clinics, senior services, supportive housing and many other health and educational services, the health system and its partners employ more than 119,000 caregivers serving communities across seven states – Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washington with system offices based in Renton, Wash., and Irvine, Calif.

About Microsoft
Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) enables digital transformation for the era of an intelligent cloud and an intelligent edge. Its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.

Media Contacts:
Elizabeth Brophy, Providence St. Joseph Health, Elizabeth.Brophy@Providence.org
Microsoft Media Relations, WE Communications for Microsoft, rrt@we-worldwide.com

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Harnessing the power of AI to transform healthcare

One of the many remarkable things about artificial intelligence is that while we tend to think of it as something that will have a big effect in the not-too-distant future, it is already transforming people’s lives in profound and powerful ways today. In factories and warehouses, AI is improving workplace safety by scanning thousands of videos to detect potential risks. In the U.S., researchers are exploring how AI can help public health organizations around the world prevent the spread of deadly diseases like Ebola, Chikungunya, and Zika by detecting the presence of pathogens in the environment and stopping transmission to humans before outbreaks can begin.

I believe this is the true promise and challenge of AI – using these new technologies to create a healthier and safer world for everyone. Now that AI has given computers the ability to recognize words and images, discover patterns in complex systems and reason and learn much like people do, it is enabling our devices to behave more naturally and more responsively. This is transforming how we understand the world and augmenting our uniquely human talents and abilities in ways that will enable us to begin to find answers to some of humanity’s most pressing challenges.

This is particularly true when it comes to human health. Today, it is possible to imagine a world where we have discovered new approaches that enable us to address some of our most pressing challenges in healthcare, including heart disease, chronic illnesses, and cancer. The good news is that innovators around the globe are already working on these issues. From detection to preventive care and personalized medicine, the opportunities to us AI to improve outcomes and reduce costs appear to be nearly limitless.

Ethan Jackson, a Microsoft researcher who is leading Project Premonition. (Photo credit: Brian Smale)
Ethan Jackson, a Microsoft researcher who is leading Project Premonition. (Photo credit: Brian Smale)

In India, for example, Microsoft is proud to work with Apollo Hospitals, one of nation’s largest private healthcare companies, to use AI to improve detection of cardiac illnesses that cause more than 3 million heart attacks in that country every year. Until now, it’s been difficult for doctors to identify patients who are at risk for coronary disease because most prediction models are based on studies conducted in Europe and North America and don’t apply well to Indian populations. For example, high LDL cholesterol, which is a significant cause of heart attacks in western countries, is less common in India.

Our approach is to combine the rich data and deep expertise that Apollo offers with Microsoft’s powerful cloud and AI capabilities to develop a scoring system to identify patients in India who are at high risk for suffering a heart attack.

To do this, a team of Apollo clinicians and data scientist started by reviewing more than 400,000 patient records from its hospitals around the country and found that nearly 60,000 patients had suffered a cardiac event after a health checkup. The challenge was to uncover the risk factors in the data that existing models had overlooked. To do this, they uploaded all the data they had collected to the cloud using Microsoft Azure and then worked with Microsoft Azure Machine Learning services to search for hidden correlations.

The team started with 100 potential risk factors and 200 lab data points. Using the massive computing power of the cloud, they trained machine learning algorithms to find the statistical significance of each factor in the occurrence of future heart attacks. This enabled them to create a model that identified 21 risk factors in Indian populations. Dr. K. Shiv Kumar, Apollo Hospitals’ chief of Chief of Cardiology, said the resulting model is twice as accurate at predicting the probability of future coronary disease as previous models. Not only is this transforming how physician’s conduct preventive health checkups, but they are now developing an AI-powered app that would allow anyone to find their heart risk score without visiting a doctor for a detailed health checkup.

In China, Ray Zhang, CEO of  a startup company called Airdoc, recruited a team of engineers to develop an AI-based diagnostic tool that can instantly detect signs of chronic illnesses including diabetes, hypertension, arteriosclerosis, age-related macular degeneration, and more – simply by taking a high-resolution image of the back of the eye.

The device takes advantage of the fact that examining the human retina is an effective way to assess the health not just of the eye, but to look for evidence of other diseases. To create it, the Airdoc team used thousands of retinal scans to create an algorithm using Microsoft Azure’s machine learning capabilities that is trained to look for tiny abnormalities such as specks, spots, and deformed blood vessels that can be warning signs for a wide range of health issues.

The Airdoc device is similar to the scanner optometrists use for routine eye exams. To use it, a patient sit on a stool, place their chin on a padded brace, and look into an eyepiece. The algorithm then automatically adjusts the angle until a green cross comes into focus and captures a high-resolution, medical-grade image that is instantly uploaded to the cloud, where it takes less than a second to conduct a detailed analysis that rates susceptibility to a long list diseases as either low, medium, or high. The results are then sent to the patient’s smartphone, with a recommendation to seek professional medical help if there are signs of potential problems.

Currently, the Airdoc device can recognize signs of more than 30 diseases. Eventually, it will be able to detect 200. The plan is to make it available in more than 1,000 hundreds optical retail stores across China over the next few years. The Airdoc device significantly reduces the amount of time physicians will need to spend reviewing and assessing scans, so they can focus more on identifying and treating patients with serious health issues. The potential to provide a simple and inexpensive way to detect not just eye problems but a wide range of diseases has the potential to transform when and how people begin treatment for chronic illnesses in China and around the world.

We’re also working with the Princess Margaret Cancer Center at University Health Centre in Toronto to redefine cancer treatment through a remarkable new approach called “single cell sequencing” that enables doctors to analyze the genetic makeup of every single cell in a cancerous tumor and then select a combination of drugs that is optimized to kill the greatest number of cancer cells. Typically today, doctors try one drug at a time to find the most effective combination for each individual patient. By utilizing the power of Microsoft Azure Machine Learning and the cloud, single cell sequencing is enabling doctors to predict how every cell will respond to each of the thousands of compounds that are available for cancer treatment and then create a truly personalized therapy based on the specific genetic characteristics of each cancerous tumor.

Azure also provides a common platform for sharing medical data and analytic tools with researchers and physicians across the country. Scientists at Princess Margaret Cancer Center now envision a time in the not-to-distant future when this kind of detailed genomic analysis will be available for every patient in Canada.

These examples are just the beginning when it comes to the outpouring of AI research and innovation Microsoft and its partners are involved in right now – and not just in healthcare. In future posts, I look forward to sharing how Microsoft is also helping innovators and entrepreneurs use the power of AI to transform the industries of agriculture and education.

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Launching today: ‘NextGen Health,’ Microsoft’s new podcast on the future of healthcare

Doctor talking with patient while looking at information on a deviceDoctor talking with patient while looking at information on a device

What’s next in healthcare? We’ve got some ideas. In NextGen Health, a new podcast series launching today from Microsoft, we guide you through the future of healthcare through interviews with providers who have already begun to use groundbreaking technologies and Microsoft Healthcare industry experts. Listen to the first episode of NextGen Health podcast here, or keep reading for a sneak peek on some of the stories we cover.

Reimagining healthcare

You’re at your doctor’s office. You’re sitting casually in the exam room. Meanwhile, a surgeon is examining your brain. Thankfully, the slices and neural pathways your doctor can see from nearly every angle are on the OpenSight, a HoloLens mixed-reality headset calibrated and developed for surgical use by medical imaging company and Microsoft healthcare partner Novarad.

According to Novarad executive Chris Bijou, the OpenSight’s three-dimensional model—derived from patient scans and overlaid in real time onto the patient’s body—provides precision medicine that creates better outcomes for caregiver and patient alike.

“The biggest thing is, you’re not actually looking at the computer and then trying to calculate in your brain. ‘How far is that rib or how far is that heart where you’re trying to get into that ventricle,’” Bijou said. “You’re putting it right onto the patient, looking right down into it.”

That’s just one great example from our episode about reimagining healthcare.

Empowering care teams

It’s been a hard day. You’ve just spent a long shift as a nurse on the ER floor. You’re tired, your head’s just hit the pillow, and ding! There goes the phone. Then again. And again. How are you supposed to maintain good morale—not to mention stay in compliance with legal regulations—when you can’t sleep because your fellow caregivers are communicating via text?

“This is just not an environment that clinicians can do their best work in,” says Emma Williams, Corporate Vice President at Microsoft focused on modern workplace for healthcare.

But if all of those communiques, as well as images and information related to patients, were moved into an app like Microsoft Teams tailored specifically for healthcare organizations, you would remove the risk of privacy violations—plus you’d finally get some rest. And that makes you excited to show up for work on your next shift.

“To be able to deliver the right information, to the right people, at the right time will be a huge innovation,” Williams says. “We believe we can wrap those systems in a bubble of communication and collaboration that’s mobile first, that brings teams together, that allows them to be more highly effective.”

Listen to our podcast episode about empowering care teams to learn more.

Personalizing the Patient Experience

You’ve been experiencing some discomfort. It’s been a few weeks, so you get a referral and visit a specialist. What that doctor sees may not be a complete picture of your health, however. If all of the information about not just your illness, but your wellness, lives inside your electronic health record (EHR), your caregivers can have a much fuller picture of your needs. At the same time, clinicians can use your EHR to communicate with you in ways that work for you—like via text message—to remind you of an appointment, or to drink water, or to come in to take an A1C test because your bloodwork shows you may be at risk for diabetes, for example.

“It’s really a cultural shift and mind shift to think about, how do I offer medicine at a personal level using what I know about the consumer, all of the data I have inside my EHR,” says Andrea McGonigle, Managing Director for Microsoft’s US health and life sciences team.

That is just the start of what we cover in the third of the six episodes in the debut season of NextGen Health. Throughout the full series, we discuss genomic breakthroughs that can offer targeted, more effective cancer treatments, show how artificial intelligence in health providers’ back offices can reduce costs and increase efficiency—while continuing to put the patient first. And while these transformations are happening across the entire spectrum of healthcare organizations, learn what Microsoft, and our partners, are doing to ensure that patients’ and caregivers’ data remains secure and compliant.

This is the future of healthcare.

You can learn more about each episode on the NextGen Health website or download and listen to NextGen Health on Apple, Google or Spotify.

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Empowering clinicians with mobile health data: right info, right place, right time

Improving patient outcomes and reducing healthcare costs depends on healthcare providers such as doctors, nurses, and specialized clinician ability to access a wide range of data at the point of patient care in the form of health records, lab results, and protocols. Tactuum, a Microsoft partner, provides the Quris solution that empowers clinicians with access to the right information, the right place, at the right time, enabling them to do their jobs efficiently and with less room for error.

The Azure platform offers a wealth of services for partners to enhance, extend, and build industry solutions. Here we describe how one Microsoft partner uses Azure to solve a unique problem.

Information fragmentation results in poor quality of care

A patient is brought into the emergency department with a deep cut to the leg. The wound is several days old and the patient is exhibiting symptoms of illness, perhaps infection. As a clinician, you know the hospital has a clear protocol for wound management and possible infections. Do you know where to find this information quickly? Is it on a wiki, internal website, or on paper in a binder? Lastly, is it current? Finding the right information in these conditions can be time-consuming and stressful. Or worse, it could be inaccurate and out of date.

In many healthcare provider organizations today, information is fragmented between electronic health records (EHR), on-line third-party sites, intranet sites, and on paper. Additionally, some information may be on secured sites, not visible to everyone and data disappears if it’s unavailable offline. This situation can be detrimental to the quality of patient care because critical data is available too late or not at all. Even with internet access, the wrong information may come from a search engine. So aside from the logistical challenges of making data available, it’s important to ensure that only the right information is found. So, the enduring challenge is getting the right information to the right person, in the right place, and at the right time.

The searchability cost of file systems

Even a facility with modern IT resources such as computers, tablets, or specialized instruments presents obstacles in the search for information. Users must navigate through the network and tunnel into folders, backtracking if they are wrong. Some folders may not be available to everyone or require asking for permission when time is of the essence. Websites and apps may also require authorization. So what happens if a device is offline? Computer systems present their own hurdles to quick access.

Solution

The challenge has become a problem-to-solve for one Microsoft partner, Tactuum, who created the Quris Clinical Companion. Working with some leading hospitals, including the University of Washington and the University of Michigan, they are solving the problem for healthcare. From the Tactuum website comes this description:

“Our flagship product allows organizations to push out to staff, in real-time, the latest guidelines, protocols, algorithms, calculators and clinical handbooks. Put your existing clinical resources into clinicians’ hands right now and know that they’re using the latest and most up-to-date information.”

Tactuum has a few notable goals:

  • Right information: The content is vetted, with security safeguards. The content is easy to use, and data consumption insights are provided.
  • Right place: Available where you need it through mobile devices, workstations, and EHR systems.
  • Right time: Available on and offline. When online, real-time updates become possible.
  • Right cost: Minimal IT involvement, low maintenance, and no paper or printing required.

The graphic below illustrates the components and workflow of the system.

Infographic for Clinical Kowledge Manager (CKM)

Benefits

  • Improve quality of care due to more effective decision-making (quicker and more reliable).
  • Save money on printing requirements, easier maintenance, and streamlined distribution.
  • Innovation through powerful data and analytics.

The solution supports improving patient outcomes with critical information at the point of patient care, saving both time and money. Here’s one example, according to a registered nurse and Quris user at Airlift Northwest in Seattle:

“Time savings has been immeasurable. In the past it was required to have a workgroup of staff, educators, and medical directors to review and update the hardcopy “Bluebook.” This was very expensive and required significant time. Now, a smaller group reviews policies and resources, does updates, and uploads it directly to the organization’s server for immediate use.”

Azure services

The Microsoft Azure worldwide presence and extensive compliance portfolio provide the backbone of the Quris solution, including the following key services:

  • Web Apps: Supports Windows and Linux
  • Blob Storage: Multiple blob types, hot, cool, and archive tiers
  • Azure Active Directory: Identity services that work with your on-premises, cloud, or hybrid environment
  • Azure SQL Database: Unmatched scale and high availability for compute and storage
  • Xamarin: Connects apps to enterprise systems, in the cloud or on premises

Next steps

To see more about Azure in the healthcare industry see Azure for health.

Go to the Azure Marketplace listing for Quris and select Contact me.