With the Republican and Democratic National Conventions fast approaching, we would like to nominate some healthcare technology candidates with impressive platforms. Top vote-getters on this week’s HIT List include mobile apps, image-enabled EHRs and innovative IoT devices.

  1. Zero in on readmissions. Developers are hopeful a new mobile app could save the healthcare industry billions of dollars by mining historical records to better predict hospital readmissions. Recognizing that miscommunications contribute to 25% of preventable readmissions, the Post Discharge Treatment and Readmissions Predictor (PdtRp) app also enables patients to view their own readmissions reports and communicate directly with their providers. Health payers can use the tool, too, further helping to keep readmissions in check.
  2. Interoperability myth debunked. If you’re convinced that healthcare lags far behind other industries in operability, Micky Tripathi, PhD, invites you to think otherwise. In his keynote speech at the recent iHT2 Boston Health Summit, he pointed out that interoperability problems are rampant everywhere (consider syncing issues with Google Calendar and Microsoft Outlook, for one) and that serious progress has been made connecting separate health information exchange networks. He believes FHIR will accelerate the momentum — once a vendor-neutral app environment is created.
  3. A taste of IoT innovation. You’re probably already familiar with IoT technology such as fitness monitors and infusion pumps. But there are plenty of other innovative devices on the horizon, driving predictions that the global IoT healthcare market will reach nearly $410 billion by 2022. These include an asthma inhaler with an integrated GPS sensor to record time and location of use, contact lenses that measure blood sugar levels through tears, and monitors that track medication use and alert patients when to take medication. As always, the challenge is to ensure sufficient security and privacy.
  4. Seeing is believing. Medical images are projected to consume nearly one-third of the world’s IT storage space and could soon account for 10% of all U.S. healthcare costs. Meanwhile, demand for streamlined image sharing is rising, with 67% of providers citing it as a critical priority. Nearly 70% believe cloud networks offer the best way to facilitate sharing and image-enabled EHRs. Seamless access sure sounds like a positive for patients and providers.
  5. Finding shared value. Healthcare is among the industries likely to benefit from growing acceptance of personal data sharing, predicts a new Facebook report. The research suggests that the value of personal information will grow with greater consumer engagement, improved compliance and accountability processes, and policies that minimize privacy concerns. Bottom line, the key to success is promoting confidence among consumers that sharing data delivers tangible benefits.
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