The View Of Digital Health From An ‘Engaged Patient’
Using data from 2010, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) listed the following as the top five chronic health conditions within the Medicare beneficiary community.
- High blood pressure (58%)
- High cholesterol (45%)
- Heart disease (31%)
- Arthritis (29%)
- Diabetes (28%)
From the same report (PDF here), they also found that more than two-thirds (about 21 million) suffered from two or more chronic conditions.
The promise of “digital health” to radically alter patient life with these conditions continues to capture global imagination, engineering innovation and media headlines – daily.
But there’s a big missing link to all the rosy (sometimes breathtaking) forecasts and it’s called “data interoperability.” Simply put, it’s the lack of standards and formats for health data that’s captured electronically to work seamlessly within the life of a patient with a chronic condition (many of which are life-threatening).
Recognizing this significant and sizable gap, West Health Institute sponsored a daylong event last month called Health Care Innovation Day. It was notable for three reasons. First, it had a singular focus on healthcare data interoperability; second because it was co-sponsored by the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC); and third because it included compelling patient stories around the huge lack of interoperability within the hardware and software communities that are actually building the digital health devices and solutions ….
HCI-DC 2014: Igniting an Interoperable Health Care System