Mar 26, 2013
Earlier this month, I attended the HIMSS 2013 conference, arguably the largest healthcare IT conference in the country. HIMSS attracted over 1,000 exhibitors and over 40,000 attendees, including physicians, nurses, IT administration, and healthcare providers. Mobile health (mHealth), integration, collaboration, and analytics were a big focus this year, however, much of this new mobile health technology already has widespread presence within the market. The bigger questions now are whether healthcare organizations are utilizing this technology, how it’s being implemented, and what the impacts are on patient care. Even more importantly, though, is how OEMs are addressing these trends, as many of them maintain a heavy focus on copiers and scanners rather than mHealth initiatives.
In my analysis piece, HIMSS 2013: A Look Inside the Exhibit Hall, I visited over 15 vendors ranging from OEMs, to ISVs, to EMR/EHR vendors, to healthcare-specific software and services vendors to offer an overall picture of what HIMSS was about and provide understanding into how our industry is transforming and advancing this dynamic market…or perhaps isn’t. Some of the OEMs outlined in this analysis include Canon USA, Konica Minolta, HP, Ricoh, and Xerox. The majority of OEMs demonstrated their MFP scan-to functionality, healthcare solutions, or partner offerings. Only a few of these OEMs acknowledged the trend of mobility in healthcare and are looking to incorporate more mobile functionality in the future. Below is a picture of Canon’s booth, where they featured their Ophthalmology Camera and Imaging Solution.
Many of the ISVs, on the other hand, either already incorporated a mobile play into their offerings or will be soon, which is becoming an increasingly greater requirement and advantage for healthcare professionals and organizations. Some of these vendors I visited include Hyland OnBase, Perceptive Software, and Nuance. Yet among all these traditional vendors within our industry, those who had either the newest technology or most interesting products were the EMR/EHR vendors. The majority of them were showing mobile apps, embedded e-signature, and patient portals. AllScripts, Cerner, Epic and Meditech were among those I spoke with and visited. Below is a great example of what Cerner is doing in the clinical space – creating mobile apps and workflows for each specialty, such as cardiology or urology, or women’s health.
Healthcare is one of the most paper-intensive industries but HIMSS 2013 offered a look into what healthcare organizations can achieve by utilizing mobile technology and workflows to help automate processes. In InfoTrends’ Business Process Automation Opportunities for Vertical Markets study, we identified privacy, security, compliance, and accuracy of patient information as some of the most important issues facing healthcare providers today (see figure below). And the majority of these issues can be resolved by implementing mobile workflows or using mobile applications.
Because healthcare providers are ultimately trying to obtain Meaningful Use status and are incentivized by federal funding, there are low-hanging fruit opportunities for vendors to provide solutions that will shift organizations away from paper and towards digital workflows. While mobile capture is becoming very popular within this industry, there are plenty of unconventional vendors that are developing mobile solutions to help with a wide array of healthcare processes, like rehabilitation, analytics, patient intake, messaging, discharge, and patient record access. Vendors, particularly OEMs, need to ask themselves what they are doing to advance these goals within healthcare organizations and what they can provide in the long-run to achieve and maintain those successful electronic workflows.
The full HIMSS analysis is available to clients of our new Business Process Automation Consulting Service. Click here for more information: http://www.infotrends.com/public/Content/Services/BPA/bpa.html
And for more information on InfoTrends’ research initiatives and analysis within the mobile space, please contact Scott Phinney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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