On Wednesday, cloud computing company Salesforce unveiled a new health care platform that aims to improve patient engagement and care by leveraging data from various sources, MedCity News reports (Versel, MedCity News, 9/1).
Salesforce Health Cloud is a patient engagement and management tool that consolidates data typically housed in electronic health records and other sources, such as medical devices and wearables .
The tool is designed for health care providers and will allow for a dashboard-view of patient data, including information on:
- Conditions; and
- Lab results.
All approved members of a patient’s care team can use the platform to communicate. In addition, patients can download a mobile application to track progress and communicate with their provider.
The software also includes:
- A map feature to monitor patients’ caregiver relationships; and
- Notifications about appointments, medication refills and other parameters of patient data.
According to Healthcare IT News, Salesforce Health Cloud is not intended to “compete head-on” with typical EHRs.
Instead it is part of a wave of new software in a “post-EHR world,” according to Salesforce CMO Joshua Newman (Healthcare IT News, 9/2).
A general release of the tool is scheduled for February (MedCity News, 9/1).
Dave Holland, interim CIO at Union Hospital in Indiana and chair of the Illinois Health Information Exchange Authority, said tool is “a great idea in concept,” but questioned whether Salesforce is the best company to launch a health care-centric product. He said, “The vendors that are better positioned to deliver this are the EHR vendors themselves.”
Tim Gee, a health care connectivity consultant in Oregon, said there is potential for the tool to facilitate interoperability, but he questioned whether Salesforce would be capable of “aggregate[ing] a critical mass of patient data.”
Meanwhile, Shahid Shah, a health IT consultant and engineer, said the tool’s focus on relationships over records is “very important for population health.” However, he noted that it is “very difficult logistically trying to connect and integrate data from various systems” (Versel, MedCity News, 9/2).