Our Thinking


FUSE 2018 kicks off a year of explosive growth

By Pranam Ben

Data analytics, artificial intelligence and blockchain were among the hot topics at The Garage's user group meeting, FUSE 2018, this year in Orlando. FUSE was an exciting and educational event where our clients from ACOs and other integrated healthcare organizations, as well as our technology partners from around the country, gathered to discuss plans for the year, industry trends and learn about innovative updates coming to The Garage platform this year.

During my keynote, which kicked off the event, I urged our clients and partners to consider population health management in a new way, comparing it the Japanese paper-folding art of origami. While origami is about folding paper using connections that other people don't realize, I suggested that population health management is analogous because it connects clinical, financial and social data in ways that other systems don't realize.

Similarly, FUSE 2018's hot topics explored how healthcare providers can connect top trends and data in bold new ways to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs. Some of these exciting hot topics included data analytics, artificial intelligence and blockchain

FUSE 2018 hot topics
  • Data analytics. Our panel discussion featuring four leaders from provider organizations and technology companies explored how enterprise-wide data analytics is now must-have for every integrated organization. Alex Foxman, M.D., F.A.C.P., President and Chief Medical Officer of National ACO LLC in California, put it this way: "Providers can't manage cardiac disease without a stethoscope. Organizations can't take on risk without data analytics."

    Diane Blackburn echoed Alex's comments. Diane is the Executive Director at Prime Accountable Care LLC, an integrated ACO of more than 150 primary care physicians and mid-levels in Metropolitan Detroit and throughout Michigan. Prime Accountable Care's previous population health management platform left the ACO with no reliable data to report to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services at the end of 2016. When Prime Accountable Care switched to The Garage in 2017, however, they were able to easily mine and understand its data, generate accurate reporting and was ranked among the top performing ACOs in the Shared Savings Program.

  • Artificial Intelligence. Another popular discussion topic at FUSE 2018 was how data analytics would become more proactive with its insight through artificial intelligence (AI). The Garage is already leveraging AI in our platform, which is visible to users through our mascot, Blaze, who helps make the platform more powerful and easy to use. Soon, Blaze will help our users uncover hidden health trends by more broadly and deeply analyzing enterprise-wide data in the background. Its new AI capabilities will empower Blaze to notify care managers earlier to intervene with patients to prevent adverse health events or help them adhere to their care plan.

  • Blockchain. Associated with bitcoin and other cryptocurrency financial transactions, blockchain technology offers numerous healthcare applications thanks to its secure and transparent structure. ACOs are often spread across large geographic areas, which makes communicating and viewing patient care activity across an enterprise more challenging. Blockchain data is distributed across a network, not centrally managed, so physicians, providers, administrators and patients can easily - and securely - view activity and communicate with other stakeholders. Each communication or recorded action is timestamped and connected to the block before it, making the sequential information trail easy to follow. Since each user only controls his or her own block, no one can alter the entire blockchain alone and each action is permanently recorded and visible to everyone in the network. This structure not only keeps data secure, but it can also help prevent medical record inaccuracies and patient care errors.

These are just the tip of the iceberg with all three of those trends, so it's no wonder that they dominated a lot of discussion throughout FUSE 2018.

Product updates utilize leading-edge technology
Similarly, during my talk at the event, I described the updates we're working on for The Garage platform, several of which leverage AI and blockchain technologies. We'll explore those exciting new updates in our next blog post.

Until then, please let us know how we can support your organization on its journey to this new exciting phase in healthcare at info@thegaragein.com.

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