Healthcare and IT Companies Can Collaborate per the CHARTSaaS RA

“Health systems around the world clearly recognize the potential of digital health: over the past decade, they have invested heavily in national e-health programs. Yet most have delivered only modest returns when measured by higher care quality, greater efficiency, or better patient outcomes. And in some cases, e-health projects have been cancelled due to significant cost overruns and delays, such as the National Program for IT in the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS).1 That’s because such ambitious information-technology initiatives—with a clear focus on IT support for clinical professionals—are typically beyond the core mission of healthcare systems, which also often struggle with legacy systems that impede data integration.

At the same time, the advent of smartphones, cloud computing, and global connectivity has created a universe of consumers accustomed to everything from checking bank balances, making purchases, and watching movies on mobile devices. Increasingly, those consumers wonder why health systems cannot provide similar service innovations. In that respect, digital-health companies would appear to be best positioned: innovation is in their DNA, they have attracted billions of dollars in venture capital, and they have the flexibility to design applications that cater directly to patient groups. Yet digital-health companies have been impeded by a lack of access to health data along with uncertainty about how to distribute the economic benefits generated by smartphone apps.

As system leaders struggle to unlock the full potential of technology in healthcare, they must answer the following three fundamental questions:

  • Who should pay for digital-health applications and services?
  • ƒƒ What evidence of effectiveness should be required to justify reimbursement?
  • What conditions must be in place to provide start-ups that develop successful health
    applications with a sustainable business model?

We believe the solution is to promote collaboration among providers and digital-health companies by enabling the exchange of health data—a vital enabler of more efficient care delivery. To drive technology advancement and adoption, each national or federal health system should consider an open innovation platform that holds healthcare data (beginning with highly standardized claims records), and provides data access that is enabled for application programming interfaces as well as common technical IT services such as identity, access, or consent management. This platform would serve as the basis for an ecosystem of digital-health-services innovation by certified third parties and could be steered by the respective health system.”

The January 2016 article by Gerardo Aue, Stefan Biesdorf, and Nicolaus Henke of McKinsey & Company entitled “How healthcare systems can become digital-health leaders” ( from which the foregoing excerpt is quoted summarizes not only the critical importance of digital health to the positive transformation of healthcare but also the positive potential of collaboration between healthcare provider and information technology (IT) organizations to realize this potential.

The Cloud Healthcare Appliance Real-Time Solution as a Service (CHARTSaaS) reference architecture (RA) describes an appropriate IT architecture that is cost-effective, because it capitalizes on IT solutions and services currently in production, and also is vendor agnostic, thereby providing considerable latitude for healthcare providers to procure and implement. Specifically, the CHARTSaaS RA provides an IT template for cloud-based (i.e. — Internet-accessible data center maintained and managed by a cloud service provider a.k.a. CSP company) subscription software that enables healthcare provider subject matter experts to design, develop and deploy cognitive support applications a.k.a. “apps” that leverage installed electronic health record (EHR) systems through interoperability using enterprise service bus (ESB) and other state-of-the-art IT tactics. These apps are continuously operating or conditionally launched automated processes that may include complex event monitoring, similarity and predictive analysis, rules-based actions and choreography of system and staff tasks.

Please validate this statement to your own satisfaction by reviewing the details of CHARTSaaS and the CHARTSaaS RA in these presentations, and then by imagining a CHARTSaaS-enabled IT solution:

Healthcare providers and their patients will benefit significantly from appreciating and then applying a CHARTSaaS RA-compliant IT solution. To do so will mitigate medical mistakes (currently the  third leading cause of patient deaths, per Makaray and Daniel,, thereby minimizing  patient adverse events; and also will optimize clinical case outcomes while maximizing the cost-effectiveness of care and treatment and accelerating the accrual of medical knowledge.

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