GE invests $1 billion to improve global training over next five years

by Lauren Dubinsky, Senior Reporter | July 29, 2015
Population Health Risk Management
GE Healthcare announced today that it is planning on investing more than $1 billion over the course of five years to improve its education and training offerings. The company's goal is to reach over two million health care professionals globally by 2020 and they predict that it will benefit over 300 million patients around the world.

“We will continue to work closely with local governments, institutions and customers to address some of their most important concerns,” John Flannery, president and CEO of GE, said in a statement. “In some countries, this will mean training midwives to use new ultrasound or portable diagnostic equipment. In others, it will include supporting multi-hospital networks to enhance their clinical and operational outcomes.”

Countries like the U.S., Europe and parts of Asia are looking to optimize efficiency, systems integration, and data analytics and increase productivity. Developing countries want access to affordable, basic primary care.

GE will provide online and remote training for physicians, radiologists, technologists, midwives, nurses and biomedical engineers, mostly as part of a commercial partnership.

They will offer peer-to-peer training by notable opinion leaders, virtual video conference training, clinical product training by certified clinical application specialists, biomedical training supervised by technical instructors and leadership training managed by a certified GE consultant.

In addition to the training commitment, GE will continue to work with health care providers to build other strategic programs including technology, finance and consulting service to help improve health care delivery.

GE already has a few existing global training initiatives including Skill India Initiative, which will train and educate over 100,000 new and existing health care professional in India over the next five years. The company recently announced a $14.7 million commitment to train health care professionals at its first health care skills advancement center in Kenya.

Since 2011, GE has been working with the Chinese Medical Doctors Association to train more than 6,500 rural doctors in China. The company has invested $3.5 million since 2012 to develop technical and clinical hands-on courses for health care professionals in Brazil.

After implementing initiatives in Europe, GE has seen a 300 percent-plus increase in remote expert training sessions. In the U.S., GE’s Leadership Centre in New York has been the headquarters of their training programs for more than five decades.

GE is also working on developing new education tools that aim to provide greater access and measure outcomes. They are conducting global pilot studies for a new class of remote-controlled robotic telepresence training tools that enable an expert to deliver training from any location.

Other solutions in the works are outcome-based education offerings that leverage data and analytics to identify training needs and generate customized training plans. They will be able to measure “before and after” impact based on radiation dose and patient throughput.

“Healthcare providers continue to experience increased patient volumes and decreased time for training,” Mario Lois, general manager of global education services at GE, said in a statement. “And it’s clear to us that the skills of health care professionals using medical equipment are at least as impactful on the resulting outcomes, as the quality of the product itself.”

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