The push for the merging of technology and healthcare continues with the recent announcement out of Atlanta from Emory Healthcare. Emory will be launching an innovative, technology hub that will create, test and implement solutions using technology that will be designed to improve health outcomes by minimizing the cost for both providers and patients.
Writer Greg Slabodkin from Health Data Management posted an article recently that mentioned how the Emory Healthcare Innovation Hub will be partnering up with tech companies that are leaders in critical health areas of IT; this refers to the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and cloud computing. The focus will be on putting patients in the center of care delivery and is expected to officially launch on September 1st of this year.
Vendor Sharecare is First of Many Who Will Partner with Emory
Though Emory’s tech hub has not officially launched yet, Atlanta-based digital health vendor, Sharecare, is the first partner that Emory has announced; the vendor provides a platform known as consumer wellness engagement. The provider said that over the next few months, other partners will be announced.
According to the announcement, the Sharecare and Emory Healthcare partnership will accelerate the development of evidence-based digital health solutions targeted at improving the health of the state of Georgia. This references that the state has fallen below what the national average is regarding overall well-being.
Scott Boden, MD, who is quality officer and chief medical for Emory University of Orthopedics and Spine Hospital as well as vice president of business innovation for Emory Healthcare, said that Sharecare is going to be one of our lead sponsors—we’re going to have potentially up to eight strategic partners. Sharecare has a very nice digital health platform with a lot of connectivity to consumers and patients. It’s a good partner to have in the toolbox when you’re trying to design and engineer health IT-based solutions for patients.
Will Emory’s Tech Hub be Protected from Cyber Attacks?
While many will be looking forward for the launch of Emory’s technology hub, others may have concerns on how safe the hub will be from cyber-attacks. After all, it was roughly two months ago that Atlanta fell victim to a ransomware attack that has been considered to be one of the worst attacks in history on a major American city that brought Atlanta’s municipality for roughly a week to its knees.
Regardless, Emory is moving forward in finding partners who, according to Boden, are leaders in technology to build an ecosystem of quick innovation to identify the most pressing and most fundable opportunities while matching them with solutions that will accelerate commercialization. He said this hub is based on putting all the thought leaders, problem solvers and business case developers in the same space to rapidly identify, prototype, develop and commercialize solutions.
Emory Will Solve Many Challenges in the Healthcare Industry
Emory is thought of as being one of the nation’s best comprehensive academic health systems. Boden feels that the provider organization is positioned ideally to have both its brain trust and its delivery venues to assist in solving the many challenges that healthcare industry’s face.
He said as the U.S. healthcare system shifts from fee-for-service to value-based care, it is critical that we not only understand the evolving needs of patients and providers but also address those needs in ways that maximize technology to both enable the best possible care and engage patients throughout the entire care journey. Our shared commitment to studying, creating and implementing digital health technologies will drive greater value to our patients in ways that will help them live their healthiest lives.
Also, Emory has been busy joining with the retailer Walmart as last month, the two officially joined forces to establish an accountable care organization. This enables employees of Walmart at 55 Walmart, Sam’s Club as well as Walmart Distribution Center locations within the metro-Atlanta to pick the Emory Accountable Care Plan to be their primary health plan; workers have been given the ability to enroll back on January 1st of this year.