New Report On Connected Apps in Healthcare

In an evaluation developed in partnership with SMART and funded by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), KLAS Research spoke with clinical leaders at nearly 50 healthcare organizations about how they select and use clinical apps today, what they would like to see in the future, and the concerns they have around adopting apps.

Findings include:

  • Around half of the healthcare organizations interviewed use apps at the point-of-care.
  • Looking forward, many providers are interested in purchasing or developing apps around patient engagement, followed by EHR data visualization, diagnostic tools and decision support tools.
  • Usability is the most important factor healthcare organizations consider when purchasing an app, followed by cost, clinical impact and integration with existing systems.
  • Pilot programs and demos represent providers preferred way to evaluate apps, with peer recommendations, web content and video demonstrations also being popular.
  • Privacy and security is by far the biggest concern around adopting apps, although app credibility, concerns regarding ongoing maintenance, and the need for integration with existing systems are also high on the list.

The role of apps in healthcare is growing, with many organizations looking to third-party vendors to supply niche solutions that improve patient care and organizational efficiency.

Increasing adoption of the SMART and FHIR application programming interfaces (APIs) by EHR vendors and health systems is streamlining the process of connecting these apps to clinical systems, and strong regulatory support requiring APIs in certified health IT is expected to continue driving this trend. With app discovery tools, such as the SMART App Gallery, making it easier for healthcare providers to find and evaluate apps, there is a bright future for connected apps in healthcare.

View the full report, “Connected Apps in Healthcare 2017: A Look at Trends and Provider Attitudes in a Growing Market”

AMA and SMART Collaborate to Survey Physician Interest in EHR Connected Apps

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As part of a broader survey of 1,300 physicians covering digital health tools, the SMART Health IT Project and the American Medical Association collaborated on a set of questions to better understand how providers wish to discover, evaluate and purchase apps that connect with their EHR system.

One important finding for app creators is that 81% of physicians ranked integration with their EHR as a very important or important requirement for digital health tools. Additionally, more than half of the physicians indicated that they are extremely likely or very likely to purchase apps that extend their EHR system’s capabilities and securely integrate into the EHR workflow.

Download the full report at: https://www.ama-assn.org/sites/default/files/media-browser/specialty%20group/washington/ama-digital-health-report923.pdf

The SMART Team is Hiring!

We’re looking for a senior developer to work full time on the open source SMART on FHIR project!

Senior Developer

The Boston Children’s Hospital Computational Health Informatics Program (http://www.chip.org), a Harvard Medical School affiliate, is seeking an experienced full stack web developer to join the SMART Health IT team.

The platform is REST-based, incorporates OAuth2 and related technologies on the security layer and can use JSON and XML serialization formats. The team you will be joining writes services, applications and frameworks for web and mobile platforms in various programming languages and likes to give the latest and greatest technology a try.

The ideal candidate:

  • Has a Bachelors or Masters in Computer Science or equivalent industry experience, plus at least 3 years of experience in real-world software development
  • Lives and breathes full stack web development using open-source development and tools, can discuss the pros and cons of various web application toolkits
  • Writes quality code: source control, testing, and clear documentation are all musts
  • Has experience with JavaScript and at least one other programming language
  • Has experience with at least one web framework
  • Is comfortable doing basic system administration in a Linux environment

Bonus points if:

  • You have experience with Python or the JVM
  • You’re familiar with both statically and dynamically typed languages
  • You can share a link to your work on GitHub

Please submit a cover letter describing your background, a resume and a code sample that represents your best work to: smart.dev.job@gmail.com

SMART Health IT Awarded Funding to Enhance App Discovery Tool

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Following a competitive process, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has awarded SMART Health IT, a project of Boston Children’s Hospital Computational Health Informatics Program and the Harvard Medical School Department of Biomedical Informatics, the “Discovery Infrastructure for Clinical Health IT Apps” funding opportunity.

Under this agreement, SMART Health IT will study the healthcare app ecosystem, enhance the SMART App Gallery (https://gallery.smarthealthit.org) with additional functionality, and expand the sample data available to users and developers through the SMART Sandbox. To achieve these goals, SMART Health IT has partnered with organizations that include FHIR.org, HL7, the American Medical Association, American Nursing Association, as well as consultants from world-class market research firms and design companies.

More at:

HHS Idea Lab blog post provides a great overview of FHIR and SMART!

FHIR is laying a framework for digital disruption to occur. A big part of FHIR’s popularity is that it’s vendor-neutral and free to use, which allows innovators to do things that couldn’t easily be done before. […] The SMART on FHIR app platform and app gallery are great examples. Think of SMART on FHIR like the app store on a smartphone. Some of the apps are designed for physicians to use, such as the Growth Chart app developed by Boston’s Children’s Hospital. The app plots a child’s height and weight against growth charts published by the World Health Organization and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) so that physicians can track a child’s growth over time and communicate this to the child’s caregivers.

Other apps in the SMART on FHIR gallery are patient-facing, such as the ClinDat application, which makes it easier for rheumatoid arthritis patients to document which joints are normal, tender, or swollen. These data are captured electronically and sent back to the medical record in real-time to support the clinical care patients receive. The beauty of SMART on FHIR is the apps are vendor neutral and can be ‘plugged-in’ to EHRs and other tools used on multiple devices (particularly mobile devices) that are already integrated into clinicians’ workflows.

A Primer on FHIR: Lightweight, Reusable Web Technologies Can Help Solve Substantial Real-World Health Challenges