Hear from CIOs, CTOs, and different C-level and senior execs on information and AI methods on the Way forward for Work Summit this January 12, 2022. Study extra

Most leaders who speak about a digital transformation like to focus on firms constructing innovation from the bottom up. Tesla is a standard instance.

Prat Vemana, the chief digital officer (CDO) for the built-in well being system and insurer Kaiser Permanente, prefers to speak in regards to the Mercedes-Benz EQS — the all-electric sedan from a world-famous vehicle model.

“It’s about taking a standard enterprise mannequin and getting ready to guide in a digital world,” stated Vemana, beforehand the chief product and expertise officer at Residence Depot and a keynote speaker on the upcoming VentureBeat Buyer Expertise Summit. “Mercedes took the perfect of what they’d, the perfect of what electrical autos provide, and went to market with the very best expertise in electrical.

For Vemana, the important thing query for firms within the midst of digital transformation — in well being care or different verticals — shouldn’t be tips on how to construct a Tesla. It ought to be tips on how to construct an EQS.

Coming into well being care’s third wave of digital transformation

As Vemana sees it, digital transformation has occurred in three waves in well being care. Digital well being data (EHRs) have been the primary wave, whereas the second was the digitization of bodily processes — akin to writing prescriptions and sending them to the pharmacist or serving to a affected person who contacts the decision heart to schedule the correct of appointment.

In each the primary and second waves, although, there are nonetheless analog processes. Many EHRs aren’t built-in, so well being techniques fax data backwards and forwards. Not all prescriptions may be processed and never all appointments may be scheduled and not using a telephone name.

What’s extra, Vemana stated, the second wave of innovation is basically targeted on workflow optimization inside well being care organizations. It helped scientific employees lookup info or helped payers handle claims and detect fraud. It didn’t concentrate on the affected person.

The third wave is a digital-first expertise that additionally places the affected person first. “What we’re shifting is how we will take the information and intelligence and make it priceless for sufferers to handle their very own well being and wellness,” Vemana stated. “We’re beginning with the affected person and dealing backward — it’s about me, my household well being, and my medical circumstances. That’s what we’re clearing a path for.”

Shifting from information to intelligence to help affected person care

Not surprisingly, information and analytics play an vital function on this third wave of digital transformation.

Three information sources assist to grasp what’s taking place to a affected person and whether or not it’s critical, Vemana stated. There’s the private information, which comes from EHRs, insurance coverage claims, and, more and more, from a number of patient-generated sources. There’s the operational information, which permits scientific employees to see how others with the identical medical circumstances on the similar facility have been handled. And there’s the medical information that defines what medical circumstances are and the way they differ.

Having the information is one factor, however having the ability to use it’s one other. “The factor I realized from retail is that utilized intelligence is crucial factor,” Vemana stated. “Are you able to apply the intelligence for real-time choice help? That requires connections between the information and the digital properties,” which incorporates the EHR in addition to different scientific functions.

To assist scientific groups derive intelligence from information, Kaiser Permanente has created an information lake in Microsoft Azure, centered its infrastructure on information marts, and hosted its analytics instruments within the cloud. The important thing to getting this arrange in place was an emphasis on collaboration, Vemana stated.

“It’s not unusual to see well being care get buried within the waterfall technique and watch for authorized enterprise circumstances. So we began to carry physicians and technologists collectively to outline the important thing outcomes and metrics, practice the groups, and align the usage of information with our value-based care operational mannequin,” Vemana stated. “We got here collectively to resolve the issue. Now we will assess a affected person’s situation, navigate them to the best intervention, and supply the best stage of steering.”

Driving a greater expertise earlier than a go to even occurs

Again in 2016, former Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson stated digital visits accounted for 52% of all visits to the well being system. On the peak of COVID-19, that quantity spiked to 80%. Kaiser Permanente stands out amongst its rivals — a latest survey discovered that just one in 4 well being techniques have at the least 25% of sufferers utilizing telehealth in 2021.

Nonetheless, Vemana sees room for enchancment. “We’re very profitable at digitally-enabled well being, and it’s really a blessing,” he stated. “However for those who have a look at the exercise, nearly all of it’s the post-visit expertise.”

It’s vital for sufferers to have the ability to entry lab outcomes, view go to notes, or conduct a follow-up with out going to the workplace. However Vemana says he sees extra worth in offering steering earlier than the go to — just like the EQS, what’s already working effectively, and making use of it in a brand new manner.

“At the moment’s system is adherence and compliance. That’s transactional,” he stated. “How will we transfer that to an expertise? If I’ve bronchial asthma, I do know I have to see a physician each six months. However what does my surroundings appear to be? What meals ought to I keep away from? How can I reside higher figuring out extra about my situation? That’s what we’re migrating to. While you’re rather more conscious of your total well being, we will flip that into a greater expertise.”


VentureBeat’s mission is to be a digital city sq. for technical decision-makers to achieve data about transformative expertise and transact. Our web site delivers important info on information applied sciences and techniques to information you as you lead your organizations. We invite you to grow to be a member of our neighborhood, to entry:

  • up-to-date info on the topics of curiosity to you
  • our newsletters
  • gated thought-leader content material and discounted entry to our prized occasions, akin to Rework 2021: Study Extra
  • networking options, and extra

Develop into a member