October 8, 2018

AI & Machine Learning Will See You Now, and Other Takeaways from Health 2.0

A 3Pillar team and I spent a few days in Santa Clara recently for the 12th annual Health 2.0 Conference. As usual, we spent some time after the conference debriefing on the trends and topics that we felt like would be most relevant in the short and long term for our customers in the space. These were a few of the things that stood out most to us.

AI & Machine Learning Will See You Now

AI and machine learning seemed to be the predominant topics of conversation, both on stage and in conversations we had with companies looking for a little bit of product guidance.

In “The Power of Intelligent Care to Transform Delivery,” a panel that included leaders from HeartFlow, IOMED, and Flatiron, among others, covered the power of using AI in clinical settings for non-invasive diagnosis, digital diagnosis, and more. HeartFlow, for example, creates a personalized 3-D model of patients’ hearts to analyze blood flow, preventing patients that are suffering from chest pain from going through unnecessary invasive testing.

Telehealth is FaceTiming You

Stop us if you’ve heard this one before…but telehealth is finally on its way. Seriously. This time we mean it. Companies like Medici and Virta Health are showing promise when it comes to putting together a compelling offering that puts health care providers just a phone call – or a FaceTime video call – away.

Virta promises type 2 diabetes reversal that is powered, in part, by immediate access to care through mobile and desktop apps. Their CEO, Sami Inkinen, gave a compelling keynote on the concept of continuous remote care, which combines digitally-delivered care with insights gleaned from data and AI.

What to Do With All That Data? FHIR APIs and Open Access to Data is a Start

There was tons of discussion around patient data, interoperability, and how to put the patient back in control of their data and who can access it. Not everyone was bullish on where the industry is now, but many have high hopes for what Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) will do. FHIR is a draft standard and API for exchanging electronic health records that was in the news in January when it was announced that Apple would launch a Health Records app that uses the FHIR specification in conjunction with 12 hospitals.

Already in use by companies like Allscripts and championed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, FHIR is meant to be an antidote to the interoperability woes that have rendered EHRs essentially siloed to this point.

It Takes More than a Great Idea for Digital Products to Thrive

3Pillar CEO Jonathan Rivers spoke at Health 2.0 about the perils of wading into the digital healthcare space (see Why 98% of Digital Health Startups are Zombies and What They Can Do About It). Jonathan covered how anyone brave enough to do so can work to avoid the fate of becoming one of those zombie companies. Whether you’re at a startup or a more established company in the space, the lessons he shared should resonate. You can view his Slideshare presentation below.