Premier Partner Editorial

Steven N. Kalkanis

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As health care adapts to digital technology, the operating rooms of the future demand connected medical devices that seamlessly acquire, share, and provide data to physicians and health care teams when and where they need it.

That means data and medical devices must be interconnected pieces of the same fully digital environment, creating and fueling the decision support systems that health care providers need while improving lives.

Digital data enriches the collaborative power of precision medicine for clinicians across multiple specialties, and our patients. Data should be captured across a patient’s treatment timeline, correlated and properly indexed in a patient-centric informatics platform. Such functionality allows surgeons to work with digitized surgical video and image capture, MRI and CT scans, lab reports or other results to make informed decisions.

Doctors working, viewing a digital image of a brain

For example, at the 2016 CNS Annual Meeting, Synaptive Medical partnered with Henry Ford Health System to create a virtual hospital tumor board called ONConnect. Every brain cancer patient deserves the highest level of care, including opportunities to access the best and most individualized treatment solutions for cancer. The reality is that some patients, especially those in smaller care centers or remote regions, do not currently have access to the latest molecular, genetic, and precision medicine treatment protocols, and some physicians may not be aware of available technological advances or ground-breaking clinical trials.

ONConnect’s data-driven platform will transparently link those patients and referring physicians with personalized resources in the most efficient and organized way possible. Making tumor boards virtual may also allow referring physicians with limited access to disease-specific expertise to participate in the process, creating opportunities for standardization and leveraging efficiencies within the health care system.

Health systems need accessible data and connected medical devices to help them deliver high-quality, cost-effective medicine. Moving into a fully connected digital environment will allow physicians and patients to realize large-scale benefits.