by Lauren Dubinsky
, Senior Reporter | February 04, 2019
From the January/February issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
After years of pontificating over the advent of big data and what it could mean for healthcare, the medical industry has finally found itself on the verge of a new and smarter era.
But what does artificial intelligence actually mean? How will these sophisticated algorithms be regulated and where are the results going to first show themselves? In some cases, these questions are as complex as the technology itself – but as companies continue to invest in these new capabilities the answers are beginning to reveal themselves.
GE Healthcare drew inspiration from NASA by creating its own Mission Control Center. But instead of managing space flights, it manages a patient’s hospital experience with the help of sophisticated algorithms and predictive analytics. The command center technology continuously analyzes real-time data across multiple sources to detect and prevent risk, manage staff workload and streamline the discharge process.
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Licensed providers within the command center are tasked with monitoring and leveraging decision support applications. One of the applications, for example, monitors patients scheduled to be discharged and addresses problems that could result in preventable delays.
When the hospital or health system first launches their command center, they choose between five and 22 applications based on their specific needs. After that, they have the opportunity to add to their suite each year.
GE is currently working on future applications for perinatal quality, elderly care, patient safety, length of stay, computer vision, population health, genomics and home health.
“We worked problem-back with clients to understand real-world challenges facing caregivers in leading hospitals,” said Jeff Terry, CEO of healthcare command centers at GE. “AI-powered command centers evolved through years of work as a way to impact many of those challenges.”
To date, GE has implemented 10 command center programs – eight within the U.S., one in Canada and one in the UK. These 10 command centers support 41 hospitals in total.
AI across the whole health system
One of those command centers was installed at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) in July 2017. The health system’s main goal was to reduce capacity-based transfer declines and utilize their community partner hospitals more effectively.