Electronic Medical Records Startups Are Powered By Patients Reply


In our group, we speak a lot about how unleashing data and mashing it up can transform clinical development and healthcare in general. Going further, one of the most exciting opportunities to improve healthcare is the sharing of health records between health care providers and patients.

This is why it’s exciting to see a new batch of medical technology startups committed to adding efficiency to the data sharing process, and in a move we hope to see more of – putting medical records in the hands of those who own them outright – patients!

One example, as profiled by ReadWriteWeb recently is Drchrono, an exciting iPad service that allows doctors to work with medical records and perform functions such as:

  • Scheduling an appointment
  • Input medical details
  • e-prescribing drugs
  • billing
  • Medical Speech to Text technology

The most important feature in our view is the ability for patients to get a copy of their medical records via Drchrono. The app and its usage is growing – according to the company, 50,000 doctors and 400,000 patients are registered with the service.

There are a number of other startups attacking the electronic health record industry, as further noted by the ReadWriteWeb article.

KeyboardMuch of the innovation in this area of medical technology is due to the HITECH Act, which gives physicians incentives for using electronic records. However, the health consumer and patients rights communities are excited about the HITECH Act because by digitizing these records, the data can now be made available to consumers as appropriate.

After all, our medical records belong to us, and in most cases, medical records have been out of touch and inaccessible to in any meaningful way. As more data access is responsibly given to health consumers, we can begin to see services and applications that enable us to take ownership of our health care. For example, imagine an instance where after learning about a medical condition, you also learn about clinical trials you qualify for based on your medical history and location.

The idea of health consumers having access to their records has been championed by John Wilbanks, who gave an inspiring TED talk on the subject in June. Also, Wilbanks has built WeConsent, a site dedicated to the idea of medical commons, a way for people to gather their medical data and share it freely.

This is what data access is all about!

Photo credit: juhansonin and jfcherry

A Patient View of Clinical Collections 1

Today we’re going to take a look at the Clinical Collections tool from the point of view of the patient.  Patients (as well as their family members) have a unique, personal perspective on disease, and many quickly become experts in their own right. They tend to put in a lot of hours on- and off-line, reading research materials and talking to other people to get answers and help.

Where Clinical Collections helps all kinds of researchers – physicians, scientists, and clinicians – pull together relevant data for their work, our team has found that the tool is also valuable for patients and others who are doing research of their own.  Take a look as we walk through Clinical Collections with the eyes of two patients, one who simply wants to pull together relevant information, and one who is looking to be involved in a clinical trial close to their home.

Reflections on Datapalooza Reply

Our Health Data Initiative Datapalooza experience was really valuable. We learned a lot about open data, innovative apps and APIs, and creative ways to incent the crowd to solve big problems. Here are Datapalooza observations from Dave CrumbacherBarry Crist and me.

  1. It was our first time seeing Todd Park speak in person – his positive energy,enthusiasm and “do it” spirit sets him apart.
  2. APIs are the way to enable app development and unleash data. It was good to learn of the National Library of Medicine APIs, the Aetna CarePass Developer Portal and more.
  3. More…

Who Is Jerry Matczak? 8

Jerry Matczak is the Community Manager for the Lilly Clinical Open Innovation Team, responsible for connecting people to the team’s efforts. He has a BA in English & Philosophy from Allegheny College and a MS degree in Information Science from the University of Pittsburgh.

His IT experience at Eli Lilly combined with a variety of sales, marketing and technology roles in startup and consulting environments provide a diverse set of experiences that help him join people & technology.  Jerry is equal part translator, sense-maker, community-builder and networker, with a common-sense understanding of technology and people.

You have degrees in English and Philosophy as well as Information Science. What ties those together?

In high school my friends and I did a lot of reading, talking and thinking – you know, solving the world’s problems in the basement. We had a strong bent towards the arts, humanities and academia, and, to some degree, a bit of disregard for business and the “real world.” So, I got my English and Philosophy degree and entered the workforce.  I worked multiple jobs in bars and restaurants, department stores, on a sound crew for Pittsburgh’s Department of Parks and Recreation, and for the University of Pittsburgh.

Then, I met some people enrolled in Pitt’s Information Science program. The program had a technology and information foundation, but required cognitive science and humanities credits to get in. I got interested, applied, and was accepted. I learned about technology and computer science, but more importantly I became attuned to the people aspect of information management. I started to see how information affects lives.