The New PDM & Your Patient Records

Resonate on iPhone

When I was still living in America, I didn’t have to think about my patient records because my doctor administered my tests onsite and her admin staff filed them there.  In France things are different in that you only get your consultation at the doctor’s office.  For example, for bloodwork I must make an appointment at the independent bloodwork lab (a few blocks away), go for my test, and dutifully bring the test results back to my doctor for evaluation.  No centralization, lots of legwork.

So when I learned about our partnership with echoBase for centralized patient records on the iPhone and iPad, I got excited.  Wouldn’t that be cool if little ole me in France could tote around my patient records on my iPhone and share them with my doctor electronically!?

I think I’ll have to wait, but you folks living in America have some geeky goodness in store for you when it comes to your patient records and what I call The New PDM: Patient Data Management.

For the record (ha ha), PDM also refers to Product Data Management (aka ENOVIA software).

Unlike for American healthcare patients, American healthcare providers (doctors, hospitals, pharmacies, etc.) must wrangle with your patient records and data lodged in different systems and places.

To get the story on how the same data federation and security capabilities being used by the Department of Defense will be used for your patient records, please read the press release.

Meanwhile, I wanted to ask a few questions to the folks at echoBase about The New PDM.    VP of Sales and Marketing Rod Miller kindly agreed to answer them.

And now over to Rod!

Q1. How close are you in the US to having 100% patient data managed by one federating system? What will it take to get there?

RM: We are there now with our architecture based on the ENOVIA platform.  We have the database schema ready for 100% of patient data including any data format.  ENOVIA is one of the premier products for managing dissimilar data types and applying role-based security.  In order to get there we are actively pursuing hospitals to implement this today.

Q2. Will the iPhone and iPad replace desktop computers in hospitals and medical practices?

ipad_resonate_imaging_print-sizedRM: Not totally at first, but I have been in the information technology for 38 years and everything continues to get smaller and more powerful.  Over the next 3 – 5 years, the need for desktop and laptop PCs will be very limited.  The smart phones and workstations like the iPad are much more flexible and easier to use than the traditional keyboard mouse methods of interacting with the computer.  Mobility and security are the keys to the next generation of healthcare applications.

Q3. Your application photo shows the image of an x-ray. What other types of exam results will be accessible from Resonate? Any plans for 3D imagery?

RM: Resonate, utilizing the ENOVIA platform, has the capabilities to store virtually any data format.  ENOVIA is utilized everyday to manage all types of data formats in the engineering and manufacturing industries, dissimilar data management is a hallmark of ENOVIA.

Regarding plans for 3D imagery, we have had conversations with Dassault development on the subject of utilizing 3DVIA to view MRI and other 3D data.  echoBase is very interested in further discussions on this.

Q4. What’s the future of Patient Data Management?

photo1RM: Patient Data Management (PDM) will become the prevailing healthcare data architecture in a very short time.  Manufacturing and engineering have been utilizing PDM (Product Data Management) architectures to communicate dissimilar data types between dissimilar systems to individual engineers for decades.  In healthcare, we need to provide the same type of architecture to enable a single user interface for doctors.  Beyond this the reasons PDM will be the prevailing healthcare architecture are simple:

  • The number of different healthcare back office systems that are in existence (355+) today. Many hospitals have multiple systems installed and they were not designed to communicate with each other.  In order to connect to regional and nationwide health information exchanges, the hospitals will want a single interface to all outside entities that can be securely controlled.  Without a PDM system that federates the data between their multiple systems and gives them a consistent level of security, each back office system will need to be modified to do things that were not originally expected.

  • The amount of money that is being invested into new, best of breed healthcare applications. All the new money flowing into healthcare information systems is encouraging many new startup software companies to make the newest, latest, best of breed application that will solve a specific need.  As hospitals are exposed to these new applications, they are going to want to implement them.  Most of these new applications will rely on patient medical records to perform their “magic”.  Without a PDM system that provides a single secure access to the patient charts, any new application must be interfaced to all individual, existing back office systems.  With a PDM system, there is one interface to all the patient’s chart data, making it simpler and less expensive for the IT department to implement.

  • Constant doctor training when upgrading back office systems. Doctors are not clerks, they don’t like to preform all the clerical tasks required.  They especially do not like to be retrained every time a back office system is upgraded.  With a PDM system, the doctor has a single view of all the patient chart information regardless of which or how many back office systems hold the data.  Back office systems can be upgraded and the doctor’s user interface remains unchanged, reducing the need for constant retraining.

  • High availability.  Resonate synchronizes the patient charts as they are available with the back office systems.  Resonate provides the doctor a single user interface to the total patient chart without having to rely on the back office system(s) to be available.  With the acceptance of encrypted patient records on mobile devices, the doctors and other healthcare providers could have data available 100% of the time with or without a network connection.  This is very important in healthcare environments where instant, 100% available data is a requirement.

Many thanks Rod; I look forward to following this!

So all you healthcare patients and providers– what do you think about this?