Coming hot off the heels of the HIMSS Global Conference, it seems that tech giants like Amazon and Apple have set their sights on expanding their innovative reach to the healthcare sector. Future Healthcare Today is looking at the stories highlighting the relationship between the tech sector and healthcare sectors. The potential for the marriage between high-tech giants and the healthcare sector seemed to have been kickstarted by a comment TV personality Jim Cramer, who shared his recommendation that Apple should buy Epic, a major electronic medical record vendor. Read this roundup to find out more about the national conversation on how tech organizations could and should tap into the healthcare market.
What Should the Major Tech Companies Do If They Want to Get into Healthcare?
It’s easy to sit back, play armchair CEO and pontificate on the possibilities in healthcare, but it’s much more insightful to study the approaches of industry leaders who understand the ins and outs of the healthcare sector. David Chou, former CIO and executive at the Cleveland Clinic, AHMC Healthcare, Prime Healthcare and more, rejects Cramer’s idea that a full-blown acquisition is not the most ideal route for tech companies to pursue. Instead, he posits that a company like Apple or Amazon should purchase their own entire hospital or health system, allowing for the parent corporation to radically overhaul the operating model and processes of healthcare rather than simply influencing a healthcare technology company. Read more about how tech companies could benefit from buying a hospital here.
Epic CEO Judy Faulkner On Apple, Docs Who Actually Like Their EHRs And Warren Buffett
Jim Cramer’s idea also was opposed by the CEO of Epic herself, Judy Faulkner. In an interview with Healthcare IT News, Faulkner dismissed the idea, saying, “We’re not going to do that.” Faulkner feels that this sentiment isn’t a unique one in the industry, “The message is so clear around the whole industry that we wouldn’t do that. And nobody questioned it.” In the interview, she also touched on how Epic’s One Virtual System Worldwide initiative has the potential to change healthcare records on a global scale, outlining how doctors could use secure messaging back and forth to communicate sensitive patient information. She also discussed current events in the healthcare industry, such as consumer-mediated exchange and FHIR. Read the whole interview here.
Big Tech in Healthcare: What Spine Surgeons Need to Know About Amazon, Apple & More
One of the most popular fields for tech companies to attempt to enter under the umbrella of healthcare is orthopedics, which offers a path for tech companies to be at the forefront of innovation and disruption in healthcare. Dr. Alok Sharan, Co-Director of the Westmed Spine Center in Yonkers, NY, had high praise of the role that such corporations could have in the sector, “Currently, patients defer management of their health problems to physicians; this will change over time as new tech products enter the industry. To some degree, physicians will have to rethink their role as the traditional paternalistic model of the provider will diminish over time.” He foresees a scenario in which physicians will experience less physical office visits and more e-visits and other forms of virtual care. Read more here.
Can Apple Watch Carry Apple into The Healthcare Future?
Of all the consumer technology Apple has brought into the market, the Apple Watch has the best opportunity for healthcare integration. Apple already has laid the groundwork for such a move: in late January, Aetna announced the launch of its new health experience, Attain, which was designed in conjunction with Apple. Research suggests that using consumer products as ubiquitous as Apple products can be a huge opportunity for healthcare providers. According to a study conducted by Vitality Insurance, people are more likely to exercise or engage in healthy behaviors, if they are rewarded for such behaviors. Partnering with a company like Apple opens the door for healthcare providers to install rewards through its products that incentivize healthy behavior. Read more about it here.
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