AWS Healthcare Response Part 3: Orchestrating Digital Care
Nothing accelerates innovation more than challenges that need to be overcome. Over the last few months, the global healthcare industry has stepped up to the occasion: health systems have been deploying innovative solutions to keep their staff safe and improve patient outcomes, startups have been launching or scaling life-saving technologies, and regulatory bodies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have been issuing emergency use authorizations to permit adoption of these technology solutions.
Responding to requests from multiple healthcare organizations around the world, we introduced a series of webinars featuring vetted enterprise-ready startup solutions built on top of AWS and focused on helping healthcare providers navigate the challenges surrounding COVID-19. Below is the third in a series of blog posts that shines a spotlight on featured innovative startups. Dive deeper into their solutions, catch up on their presentations via webinar recordings, and get in touch if your healthcare organization needs help. Bringing awareness to these ready-to-deploy technologies may help arm the global healthcare community with the right tools to withstand the challenge.
By Jelena Joffe, AWS Connections, Global Startup Business Development & Corporate Innovation
Just like a symphony, digital care coordination sounds right when all instruments (i.e. care providers) play their part in unison (i.e. provide the right support at the right time) following the same melody (i.e. focusing on the patient journey).
Here are three AWS-based startups that represent some of the key components of digital care coordination: Xealth, a platform that allows clinicians to prescribe digital assets and services, TailorMed, a financial navigation platform that helps patients get reimbursed for treatment, and Workpath, an Uber-like platform for dispatching at-home care.
Xealth: Xealth is an aggregation platform that sits between a variety of digital health vendors and a core EHR (electronic health record) system of a hospital, supports both EPIC and Cerner EHR technology providers, and allows physicians to prescribe any digital asset relevant for a specific moment in a patient’s journey. Over 40 different vendors offer their solutions through Xealth, spanning from patient education (both branded and custom-made by the health system) and clinically validated applications (for chronic or specialty conditions), to remote monitoring solutions (glucose monitoring, respiratory health, etc.) and support services (patient transportation, food and medical supplies delivery, and others).
Being deployed within major U.S. health institutions and having such strategic partners and investors as McKesson, Novartis, ResMed, and Philips, Xealth was quick to recognize digital content, devices and services emerging as key elements of COVID-19 response. Healthcare systems such as Providence, Baylor Scott & White, and Froedtert have deployed home monitoring and patient engagement solutions via Xealth for suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients, allowing their care teams to remotely monitor patient symptoms (temperature and oxygen saturation), get their daily feedback via direct messages (Twistle and GetWell:)Network) and even provide them with required food, home or cleaning supplies (Kroger) so they didn’t have to leave their homes risking own health or infecting others.
“Beyond COVID, millions of patients are suffering from chronic or specialty conditions.” – Mike McSherry, Founder and CEO at Xealth
Since most clinical visits have been cancelled or postponed, many Xealth customers set up pathway solutions to coordinate remote care for their patients. Duke Health has launched a cardiac care solution with PatternHealth (which has an easy-to-deploy COVID-19 provider kit) to monitor post-surgery recovery or reaction to new medication, helping clinicians decide if the patient needs to come in or can continue on remote monitoring at home. Providence has set up a MedBridge application that allows clinicians to prescribe a personalized virtual physical therapy regimen, monitor patient’s adherence, and follow up with a virtual care visit. Healthwise has been helping alleviate concerns of expectant mothers through its educational maternity program, providing women with the information and support they need. SilverCloud has been helping patients deal with anxiety, isolation and stress, adding to the overall rise in demand for mental and behavioral health tools. Xealth made it possible for clinicians to prescribe these and dozens of other digital solutions through its platform.
Use case: prescribing and monitoring digital health. Xealth presentation.
TailorMed: A turnkey HIPAA-compliant financial navigation platform that provides automated, proactive, and personalized recommendations to help patients find the most optimal ways to get treatment funding while also ensuring the financial viability of healthcare providers.
COVID-19 has exacerbated the issue of so-called patient financial toxicity that has existed long before the pandemic broke out. It manifests itself in high out-of-pocket expenses for chronic conditions or expensive specialty treatments leading to significant financial distress and ultimately lower clinical outcomes (for example, 73% of cancer patients experience cancer-related financial toxicity or CRFT, 38% postpone drug prescriptions to reduce costs and 1 out of 3 families with pediatric cancer diagnosis cannot meet the basic needs of food, housing and utilities). Lower patient propensity to pay for treatments also increases the bad debt for healthcare providers, threatening their financial viability.
“Treatment reimbursement is a challenge for both patients and providers.” – Srulik Dvorsky, CEO and Co-founder at TailorMed
During the pandemic, surging unemployment rates have led to lower income and increasing numbers of uninsured patients who are unsure where to find reliable information about the available programs and unable to get financial counselling due to social distancing restrictions (normally, an in-person service provided at the hospital). With the majority of elective procedures and services being cancelled, providers are seeing a sharp decrease in revenue and are risking bad debt accumulation (which would threaten an already strained healthcare system).
This is where TailorMed’s solution comes in – available to go live immediately with no upfront payment, their Financial Navigator provides end-to-end support for both patients and providers. Leveraging data from EMRs (electronic medical records), it automatically investigates available benefits and programs, estimates out-of-pocket expenses, creates personalized recommendations, helps auto-populate enrollment forms or free drug orders, and provides powerful analytics and reporting capabilities. TailorMed’s solution is seeing a strong response from the provider community.
Use case: financial navigation & care reimbursement. TailorMed presentation.
Workpath: healthcare focused scheduling and dispatch platform on a mission to accelerate the transition to the mobile healthcare delivery to patients, wherever they are. With the current surge in at-home and on-demand healthcare services, Workpath is playing an important role in helping providers adapt to the new environment brought forth by the pandemic in a truly patient-centric and convenient way.
“Rather than patients going to healthcare, healthcare goes to them.” – Mitchell Murray, Head of Sales at Workpath
With an abundance of home delivery services, the Workpath team wondered why something like a flu swab or a pharmacy prescription couldn’t be delivered to your home. Wouldn’t that help curb the spread of the disease, improve patient outcomes, and create a positive patient experience? If you are suspected of having a flu, it would be better to dispatch a care giver to your home, perform a test, and leverage a courier to deliver a prescription based on the test results. With the COVID-19 outbreak this service is becoming even more widespread and relevant. In fact, Workpath is currently collaborating with a Fortune 50 company on a future model of in-home primary and urgent care that leverages Workpath technology to build a mobile network of care givers that will augment the customer’s telehealth programs.
“Telehealth is great but doesn’t go all the way – it needs an in-home model attached to it.” – Mitchell Murray, Head of Sales at Workpath
The Uber-like out-of-the-box platform for mobile healthcare delivery is used by providers in two main ways. Those with an existing workforce of full and part-time employees or contractors leverage Workpath as a scheduling and dispatch engine which plugs into their existing systems (EHR, CRM, billing, and payroll) and allows them to manage the work opportunities and staff through a central command center. Providers that don’t have the resources readily available can still rapidly set up home care dispatch services by leveraging Workpath’s existing network of 3rd party care providers, incl. MDs, nurses, phlebotomists, couriers, and other medical staff, which is especially relevant during COVID-19 when speed is of great importance.
In both cases, the system automatically finds the closest, available, and qualified person to perform the required type of service. This removes the burden from call centers (40% reduction in scheduling calls and 65% less emails, according to Workpath’s aggregate customer results) and large field management staff while driving patient satisfaction to 99%. During a recent collaboration with Siemens Healthineers on building their network of mobile image technologists, the number of orders created without a call center intervention rose to 98%, taking only 49 seconds, on average.
Similar to other delivery services, patients are kept in the loop every step of the way (care on the way alerts and ETA, picture of the care giver, etc.). This transparency helps earn trust of the patients that are not used to healthcare services being delivered to their homes (i.e. most of us).
While Workpath is already engaged in a full spectrum of healthcare markets and services, one of the most intriguing applications of their technology is around virtual clinical trials. Some of their customers are already building networks of mobile care providers to perform clinical trials in the home. Emerging as a natural extension of telehealth services, Workpath established itself as an essential care coordination solution in response to the pandemic.
Use case: in-home care scheduling and dispatch. Workpath presentation.
Let our AWS Healthcare Startup team know if we can help your organization in any way at firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Family Reach white paper on Cancer-Related Financial Toxicity https://familyreach.org/cancer-related-financial-toxicity-white-paper/