Several weeks ago we were preparing for HIMSS’20 – something the entire Chilmark Research team attends every year. HIMSS’20 was cancelled. Today, we are completely virtual. Luckily, this is not a drastic leap for us as I started Chilmark Research 13 years ago with a virtual model in mind, using all the digital tools available to enable such and the entire team is familiar with using them.
As Chilmark Research was founded on the premise of using our research to assist organizations in adopting and using IT to improve the care delivery process and ultimately the patient experience, COVID19 provides us a unique opportunity as research analysts. Specifically, what role will IT play in how healthcare organizations respond to this pandemic? Will the IT solutions that are rapidly being ramped up today, e.g. telehealth services, become the new normal once the crisis subsides? Is this digital health’s moment to shine?
Over a week ago, when this COVID19 thing started getting serious we received notice from several IT vendors of solutions they were offering to address COVID19. It came to us that there was no resource page listing such offerings in one place on the Internet and we decided to do something about it. Taking action, we now have a resource page of nearly 35 offerings and more come in each day. If you have something, let us know.
We have moved all of our internal meetings to Zoom, which has not failed us yet – knock wood. During those meetings we are having deep discussions on what does all of this mean – the industry’s response to COVID19, both locally, nationally and globally. We are asking questions similar to those outlined above and countless others. Our meetings have been quite lively.
From our vantage point as industry analysts, we have the unique ability to talk to countless contacts who are on the frontlines of COVID19. While we are refraining from contacting clinicians – they have plenty on their hands already – we are in conversation with countless others getting their direct feedback as to what they are experiencing to inform our research.
Late this week we put place a near-term COVID19 research calendar for more aggressive production of research notes (Monitors) that we distribute to Chilmark Advisory Service clients. We also are ramping up our public commentary via posts on our website.
Topics/issues we intend to cover will extend across our primary research areas of Analytics, Population Health, Value-based Care, Interoperability, Virtual Care, Engagement and Care Management. The team is conducting the research as I write this and publication of such research will begin in earnest next week.
Together We Win
This is a once in a lifetime event – at least I hope so – that may well define the future for digital health for a decade or more to come. As every cloud has a silver lining, this is the opportunity, the moment, for digital health solutions to prove their utility, their value.
Yes, there will be some hiccups along the way but that should not stop us. We, the healthcare IT industry sector, need to come together to help provider organizations rein in the COVID19 menace that is ripping apart the global economy. Let’s put down our swords, pick up an oar and begin rowing in the same direction.