Healthcare IT

A super EMR?

Sources of health care data are proliferating.  The previous standard–medical charts–are being augmented with information from digital sensors, patient reported outcomes, and genetic information. Wouldn’t it be nice to have all that information in one place?  That is what Salesforce is thinking.  Fortune reports:

Salesforce announced on Wednesday a new patient relationship management platform that it calls Salesforce Health Cloud…Salesforce Health Cloud combines data from multiple sources—electronic medical records, medical devices, even wearables—into a single location. The idea? By having all the information in one place, health workers will have a more complete view of the patient and, in turn, be able to make smarter care decisions, intervene earlier if issues arise, and collect data along the way for effective treatments. The software also puts that information in the hands of the patient through mobile applications.

There are a number of unanswered questions however.  For instance, is it secure? Putting all your data in one place makes it an ideal target for hackers.

Who has access to the Health Cloud?  The patient and his physician clearly; but in the era of patient-centered medical homes, the patient may be treated by tens of doctors and numerous nurses and medical assistants.  Will all these individuals have access to the cloud?  Who will be able to upload data and delete it?  Will the Health Cloud comply with the numerous federal regulations and help physicians meet meaningful use requirements?

A centralized data repository clearly has the potential to produce significant social value.  How the the Health Cloud is implemented–however–will ultimately determine whether this is a significant advance or a pie in the sky dream.


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