Technology Association of Georgia’s Digital Health Summit Offers Glimpse Into Healthcare’s Future

While we may be more granularly focused on helping our healthcare clients with digital marketing and patient intake initiatives here at Traktion, we also try to stay connected to the greater industry that is clearly in the midst of generational changes. Yesterday was such an opportunity as I attended the Technology Association of Georgia’s Digital Health Summit, held at the always-inspiring Tech Square at Georgia Tech. Here are a few takeaways from an afternoon full of fantastic panel discussions:

Consumer-side innovations in AI will drive the healthcare sector, much like it has much of the overall technology innovation thus far. Said AI Guardian‘s Chris Hackney; healthcare will likely “react, not innovate.” Another panelist referenced Chick-fil-A’s well-admired reputation for great service, suggesting that healthcare needs to learn from other industries. It’s of course a relevant point, though I suppose if our PCP wraps-up our next annual physical with a “my pleasure”, we’ll know the modeling has gone too far.

While there is much justified hype on the long-term impact of technology/AI in our healthcare systems, the current environment on the ground is far more modest. Solutions that have seemingly been solved for in other industries remain a problem in healthcare, such as image sharing across multiple healthcare providers (or even separate units within a single system), critical in time-sensitive urgent care situations where reviewing an incoming patient’s scans from a referring hospital can have life or death consequences. It’s a remaining interoperability challenge for some, particularly rural providers.

While AI requires significant data to be useful, Wellstar Health System‘s CMIO Pranav Kumar argued that so much of existing healthcare data is tied up in administrative areas such as billing, invoicing, coding and regulatory requirements, minimizing what’s actually “useful.” Certainly the possibility of doctors being able to share case information globally and in real time will be a game-changer, but it was a great point to illustrate the challenges many hospital systems have to deal with today as they sort through what of their data is actually useful to improving care.

Lastly, there were many references made to AI “hallucinations”, or events where AI provides incorrect and/or inconsistent responses. It’s nice to know our robotic friends also sometimes struggle to make something up quickly, and that we’ve managed to agree on a term to characterize when that occurs.

The final word in our summary, from Rimidi‘s CEO Lucienne Ide on the impact she’d like to see her company and innovators like her have on healthcare: “Bring the joy back to medicine.” Well said, and thanks to our friends at TAG for putting on another great event.