Table stakes, mHealth minus the “m” and optimism

20 May 2013 | Neil Jordan, General Manager of Health Worldwide for Microsoft
Through my travels and the people that I’m honored to speak with, it’s clear to me that all of us in health IT can learn a lot from each other. The similarity of issues facing health organizations and communities proves to me the value of sharing information and working collaboratively.
 
Making today’s debut of the Microsoft Worldwide Health team blog very timely. With our industry evolving so rapidly, social media gives a powerful tool for sharing experiences and best practices in real time. It helps us propel our progress together and to improve health outcomes for people everywhere. In that spirit, here are three transformative themes I’m hearing a lot about right now.

 

  1. The market is recognizing that electronic medical record (EMR) systems are just the beginning. Yes, EMR systems are incredibly important. However, much of the return on investment from these systems comes when you complement them with care team collaboration, patient outreach and business intelligence (BI) technologies. For example, health organizations are using BI technologies to connect EMR system information with information across their systems. Enabling them to provide self-service tools to staff that can easily provide clear, consolidated, relevant intelligence. This practice allows everyone inside the health organization and its ecosystem to become more knowledgeable in how they make decisions—not just in a retrospective way, but also in a predictive way.
  2. All health is mobile by nature. Thankfully, health organizations are really beginning to see the mHealth revolution pay off. Naturally we are all learning a lot in the process. What I’ve described as “experiments with my first tablet” has resulted in a realization in the industry that it’s not just about bring your own device (BYOD). It’s about securing those devices and managing all the different applications a health professional needs to use on them. That way mobile technologies can be fully integrated into the clinical workflow. The results we’re seeing with our Windows 8 hardware partners and from the latest enterprise-class tablets have motivated and inspired me. Giving me confidence that this transformation is well on its way.
  3. Optimism and investment continues in health IT. The market opportunity for software in health is growing at seven percent per year according to International Data Corporation (IDC), which is nicely ahead of most other industries. Mobile devices and the cloud have clearly already proven their value. Now health organizations are seeing real eHealth returns through social media and other avenues. Making it easier to share our successes and demonstrate what’s possible. As a result, the health industry continues to invest in technology despite difficult economic times.
Personally and professionally I’m looking forward to many exciting developments, including increasing use of embedded device operating systems and consumer devices. So that together we can further accelerate the exciting shift toward consumer-centric and preventive digital health and transform healthcare IT for everyone’s benefit.
 
Have a comment or opinion on this post? Have a question for the author? Please e-mail us at health@microsoft.com.
 
Neil Jordan
General Manager of Health Worldwide for Microsoft