Data is a commodity. We collect and store data. Heck, we even call them server farms. While silos are good for farmers, they are bad for data management — time killing, bottom-line-eroding bad. For a hospital, data silos mean departments are operating on assumptions, and there’s no room for assumptions in healthcare when patient safety and billions of dollars are at stake. Breaking down data is a crucial step in increasing visibility across hospital operations and saving much needed capital.
I then shouted into M [the mouthpiece] the following sentence: “Mr. Watson, come here — I want to see you.” To my delight he came and declared that he had heard and understood what I said.
Those words were written in the March 10, 1876 entry of Alexander Graham Bell’s journal, (now in the Library of Congress) after successfully making a telephone call from one room to another from his laboratory at 109 Court Street on that spring day in Boston.
Bell could have cribbed any number of poetic passages to utter that day, etching them in the annals of history. Instead, he called in a simple, straight-forward, utilitarian request through the new communication medium, heralding the great power of that wired electronic technology: efficiency.
Right now, like right this second if you really wanted, you could order a dozen pizzas, grab a champagne stocked limo to the airport, book a flight and hotel to Vegas, check the local weather, liquidate the savings account, cue up some Spotify jams and update your Facebook status to permanent vacation… all with one thumb. We live in a world of instant gratification. We'll all gladly pay a premium for convenience. If you want something, there’s either somebody out there who can give it to you at the push of a button, (Amazon, Uber, Netflix, etc.) or somebody working very hard to make an app for it (most likely from their MIT dorm.)
We live in extraordinary times. It feels like everything around us is moving so fast. It’s only when you pause for a moment and look back, that you realize how far technological advances have taken us. The Earth still moves at the same speed, but we’ve shrunk it in so many ways, connecting people through information and ideas in a relative blink of an eye.
In December of 1995, the International Data Corporation (IDC) reported the number of Internet users to be 16 million, or 0.4% of the world’s population. Twenty years later approximately 40% of the world’s population has an Internet connection. The first billion was reached in 2005, the second billion in 2010, and we just hit the third billion in 2014. Amidst the rising tide of a fully connected world and the proliferation of mobile communications, we find ourselves at the dawn of the Internet of Things—disrupting industries as diverse as manufacturing and shipping, to retail, transportation and healthcare.
Remember 2001, when e-commerce was in its infancy? “Click-to-Buy” typically meant a follow-up call to ensure that the order went through; and many more to figure out where your order was. Amazon changed that game to the point that when you Click-to-Buy today, you are sure that your order will show up as planned—or earlier.
Amazon is looking to shake up e-commerce again. The company recently announced same day delivery in major metropolitan markets. It is an impressive feat, considering they have millions of products delivered from thousands of vendors to millions of consumers. The successful implementation of this idea requires the players to employ a cross-functional approach, with deep planning, investment in IT, along with strong ties and good rapport with transportation partners.
Navigating the world of B2B literature, one is constantly bombarded with a seemingly never-ending barrage of eBooks, infographics and white papers, positioning themselves as a cure to solve business woes big and small. Let’s face it though, it isn't easy finding that sweet spot of being brief, cogent, informative and understandable.
Anyone of a certain age, let’s say the 30+ demographic among us, remembers a time before turn-by-turn GPS, before IM, before apps, and yes, before the Kardashians. Now we look at one another and ask: How did we ever survive without smartphones? If you engage in a conversation with anyone born in the 21st Century—excuse me, if you ever Snapchat with them—just explain that before mobile touchscreens, we all lived in trees and ate bugs off one another for sustenance, they’ll probably believe you.
Think about how upset you get without a strong LTE or WIFI signal. I’d rather stub my toe. Is it any wonder then that in the last decade, the paradigm shift that is BYOD has taken hold and changed how we work? Whether or not certain industries have fully embraced BYOD or enterprise mobility, the die has been cast, and now more than 60% of companies allow, or tolerate employee use of personal devices to access enterprise data. After all, it’s hard to fight an ever-rising tide of devices adorning out ears, eyes, wrists, and whatever other body part Silicon Valley decides is in need of an upgrade. The global market for both BYOD and enterprise mobility is expected to nearly quadruple in size over the next four years, hitting $284 billion by 2019.
Here’s an understatement for you: Evidence-based capital replacement planning isn’t easy. As we’ve discussed before, developing a replacement forecast requires hospitals to assess thousands of devices across as many performance metrics and replacement criteria—lots of data crunching. Furthermore, trying to combine those criteria to determine the overall performance of a piece of equipment is exponentially more difficult.
The Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI) had their annual conference and expo this year in Denver, Colorado. Over 2,300 healthcare technology management professionals and students from across the nation and around the world came to the Colorado Convention Center for four days full of learning opportunities, networking, and to see the latest innovations, upgrades, and advances in healthcare technology.
Last year Angela Spillane attended the conference as a graduate student in the University of Connecticut's biomedical engineering department. This year she attended the conference as an employee of Mainspring Healthcare Solutions. We wanted to get her unique perspective on the conference and a few thoughts on the brave new world of clinical engineering.