Interview

Making Healthcare Accessible Through Technology :: Ashok Chandavarkar Marketing Programs Manager, Asia Pacific Healthcare Intel Technology India Pvt. Ltd.

Ashok Chandavarkar

Intels plans for revolve around easy,accessible, and integrated technology,that aims to improve patient care in theinstitutional setting, says Ashok Chandavarkar,Marketing Programs Manager,Asia Pacific Healthcare,Intel Technology India Pvt. Ltd.

dIgitalhealth

Q. What is the overall vision of Intelin forwarding the cause of technologyin healthcare?

A. We share the vision of healthcare leaders who recognise technologies potential to evolve healthcare toward more proactive,consumer-centric models of care as well as the potential to improve the quality, cost, and accessibility of healthcare services. In homes and hospitals, clinics and pharmacies, we collaborate with healthcare leaders to better connect people and information, and enable new models of care. By helping individuals, families, and the extended
healthcare community connect to the right information at the right time, we empower them to make better, more informed decisions- and accelerate the ability to radically improve health and healthcare.

As a world leader in technology, Intelis in a unique position to help advancehealthcare, because only Intel provides abroad portfolio of key technology ingredientsrelevant to so many aspects of thesystem. It is this broad technology portfolio,and the fact that we work with manydiverse partners throughout the systemthat allows us to take an unusually holisticapproach to problem solving.Intels healthcare strategy focuses onimproving patient care in the institutionalsetting; advancing personal health technologieswith an emphasis on prevention,early detection and personalised treatment of chronic disease;and advancing standards and policies that enable innovationand interoperability across the healthcare ecosystem.

dIgitalhealth

Intel is committed to applying its knowledge and assets toeach of these areas, connecting people, and information in
new ways that have the power to radically improve health.

Q. What according to you is the primary cause of arelatively low adoption of IT in healthcare industry?What technological and/or human factor do youperceive as the bottleneck?

A. We have observed that low adoption rates of technologiesand digital solutions in healthcare tend to be chiefly because
of three reasons, 1) Technology is perceived as too hard touse or less than reliable in terms of uptime and connectivity;2) It doesnt fit in well with workflow in healthcare environments;3) It is too expensive to use and there is no clearreturn on investment (ROI) or way to measure ROI.The technologies and IT solutions that tend toward highadoption rates are those that are easy to use, intuitive andhave a strong ROI. Picture Archival Communication System(PACS) is an example of one of these technologies. It fits innicely with the workflow, its easy to use, is intuitive, andthe technology is mature and reliable. Hence, PACS is oneof the IT solutions that is most adopted worldwide and haseven become a standard of care in many countries, such asthe US, Korea, and Australia. The emerging industry of Teleradiologyas seen in India is another example of the adoptionof PACS.

Intels Digital Health Group is focused on exploring newways in which innovative technologies can help improve delivery
of healthcare by observing and listening to patients,consumers and healthcare professionals. Since we began investigatinghealth and healthcare more than 9 years ago, ourethnographic researchers have observed and interacted withmore than 1000 households and 150 hospitals and clinics in20 countries.

In addition, Intel is working with agencies and governmentsin many locations around the world to support ruraltelemedicine pilots including Lebanon, India, China, andBrazil. In some of these situations we used a new technology for rural connectivity referred to as directional WiFi. In otherpilots, Intel is exploring use of WiMAX.Intel is now looking at expanding those pilots. Telemedicine Technologies have routinely been used to treat complexcases by general practitioners who seek consultations withremote specialists. We are now exploring how one mightuse telemedicine technologies to treat routine cases in highervolume in emerging economies. For example, in Shanghai,
we are developing a pilot that allows routine cases in overcrowdedcommunity health clinics in the city to consult
with doctors remote to the clinic. The Sichuan earthquake inMay led to all of our pilot equipment being re-deployed intothe earthquake zone after all fixed telemedicine sites weredestroyed in the earthquake. This allowed the more traditionaluses of telemedicine to continue in a time of crisis.

Eventually, we hope to see an evolution of complex casesin low volume to routine cases in high volume. This fitswell with mass market emerging economies needs and theiradoption of Information and Communication Technology.

The technologies and ITsolutions that tend towardhigh adoption rates arethose that are easy to use,intuitive and have a strongROI. Picture Archival CommunicationSystem (PACS)is an example of one ofthese technologies

Q. Intels Integrated Digital Hospital architecture isknown to have a futuristic approach of transforminghealthcare delivery. What are its salient features andhow does it promise to substantially value-add thehealthcare experience?

A. The Integrated Digital Hospital is intended to facilitateincreased efficiencies for healthcare workers, improve thequality of decision-making that can help reduce medical errors,increase access to information available at the point
of care or decision so that it can positively impact clinicaloutcomes, and enhance clinician and patient satisfactionwhile reducing costs. By delivering relevant information tohealthcare workers wherever they are, these benefits can berealised.Currently, information in many hospitals is in silos. If adoctor cant order timely and appropriate treatment, thenthe doctor cant make the right decision and the clinicaloutcomes may be less than desired. Doctors and cliniciansmust be able to access patient record with up-to-date information,order medications, and lab tests, and communicatewith other healthcare workers to carry out tasks and careinstructions.

Silo approaches have improvements at the margin, butits the integrated approach that produces the value-add thatno one solution alone can achieve.

Q. Kindly give a brief overview of the broad range ofproducts, solutions and services that Intel is offering(or in the process of rollout) for healthcare industry.

A. As a world leader in technology, Intel is in a unique positionto help advance healthcare, because only Intel providesa broad portfolio of key technology ingredients relevant toso many aspects of the system. It is this broad technologyportfolio and the fact that we work with many diverse partnersthroughout the system that allows us to take an unusuallyholistic approach to problem solving.Intel offers advanced multicore technologies and solutionsfor PCs, notebooks, and servers, as well as connectivitysolutions that help healthcare enterprises optimise informationflow and operations from the bedside, nurses workstation,business office, or back office.

Intel also has a specific offering for healthcare providersin a purpose-built platform designed specifically for clinicians
at the point-of-care to help optimise clinical workflows.This platform is called the mobile clinical assistant, orMCA. The MCA was developed after extensive research withparticipation from thousands of clinicians worldwide. It is areference design, which we are rolling out through manufacturersworldwide. The mobileclinical assistant manufactured by Motion Computing hasbeen rolled out in Singapore, Korea, and Australia.In India we are working with leading software vendors,
both local and regional in making their solutions avail thefull benefits of platform using a freely downloadable softwaredevelopment kit from Intel. We have a few pilots runningand by end of this year hope to have some leading hospitalsin India adopt these platforms.

The IntelR SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) Expresswayfor healthcare provides a very efficient way toget computable healthcare information from one place toanother – across departmental systems, among providers,and to a regional or national group supporting a healthcarecommunity.

The IntelR Healthcare IT Value Model provides a uniqueapproach to analysing and measuring the business valueof IT in healthcare environments. It focuses on meetingcritical business objectives in delivering high-quality, efficienthealthcare in areas such as workflow efficiencies, patientthroughput, reduction in medication administration
errors, etc.

Intel has an interdisciplinary team of researchers anddesign engineers who have been investigating healthcaresince 1999 to understand peoples needs, values and practices.One of these areas of research is focused on homecareplatforms that allow people to age at home and to managechronic disease in lower cost settings.

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