Recently, we returned from E health 2012 in Vancouver and were able to survey the E health landscape of our country. The national E health conference has been going on for years but according to previous participants, every year it seems to be getting bigger and bigger.
The striking thing to me – as a first timer to the national conference were the large number of players that seemed to be in the E health space from south of the border. Many of them large corporations (like Microsoft) with significant amounts of money behind them.
From the various talks and presentations it appears that building integrative functionality between various software platforms is where things are headed. Everyone has accepted that the boat to mandate or institute a common health IT platform has sailed for us in Canada.
Within physician offices, hospitals, CCACs, LTC facilities – there are different software platforms to record and store health information. Few if any of these talk to each other.
So the rush is on to build and disseminate a common set of standards that will make communication between these various platforms possible.
Once this occurs, we will begin to see the gains of efficiencies we were promised by the gods of technology in health care and concepts such as E referrals, virtual wards, patient portals and the new buzz phrase “seamless patient experience” will become a reality.