Technical note Technical note

Technology at the core of healthcare

Artificial Intelligence, robotics, and machine learning to revolutionize medical practices on life’s behalf.

Solange Calvo, special for LogicalisNow

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“Technology streamlines processes and gives doctors more time, helping to replace operational and give way to emotional intelligence in a more humane care”

Luzia Sarno, Corporate Director of IT, Fleury Group

95%

Fleury guarantees 95% of precision identifying RX using AI

Transformations brought about by the use of technology are positively affecting the accuracy of diagnosis, preventive treatments, telemedicine, disease treatment monitoring, productivity gains, and remote diagnosis. It is innovation benefiting the industry’s health.

The importance of the digital era in the segment has begun with process digitalization giving way to the adoption of smart systems, which result in fewer delays during exams and appointments while reducing costs and optimizing the time of healthcare professionals.

One main step in the digitalization path is adopting the Electronic Patient Record. Among the benefits are increased security, promptness and quality of patient care, while integrating and sharing clinical information throughout all hospital sectors, in addition to report management and clinical-assistance indicators.

For Bruno Capobianchi, TI coordinator at GRAACC’s hospital, there is no doubt that technology is now a great ally for a quicker and safer care service with more quality. “Once hospital processes are digital, it’s possible to promptly navigate through information, from the patient’s admission to an automated presentation of lab test results or images straight from their records,” he explains.

From an operational stand view, he says it is possible to observe some points that provide alerts for allergies or drug interactions, while also allowing the accurate drug infusion and a complete audit of all actions carried out by the professionals involved in the care process. The IT executive stresses a process continuous improvement through indicators and a greater integration between devices to obtain more information and speed up decision-making. “Technology enables greater automation and increased security throughout the entire hospital process, providing doctors with safe information for making decisions, while reducing costs and errors”.

“IoT could mean a lot of time savings for doctors and nurses, time they can use to give more attention to patients”

Bruno Capobianchi, IT coordinador at GRAACC Hospital

Capobianchi affirmed that the hospital is currently under the implementation of a new management system. The project initiated in February 2019 and predicted to be ready in September 2019, promises all processes to be digital, with greater synergy between clinical and executive areas, enhanced security for the patient, and information availability for better welfare or administrative analysis. “We’re constantly pursuing excellence and safety in our care service,” affirmed the executive, who has the responsibility of supporting a social, non-profit institution, established in 1991 to treat children and adolescents with cancer and cares for, yearly, more than 3,500 patients.

Pietro Delai, IDC Latin America’s Cloud & Software Program Manager, assesses that on national territory, there are still many hospitals at a basic technological maturity level. “We see those that don’t have the minimum, not even for inventory control, and others that use emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and machine learning, with significant advances in labs. But there is much to be achieved and developed throughout the entire healthcare sector chain,” he alerts.

Regardless of the technological landscape, Carlos Reis, Logicalis’ healthcare expert adviser, warns of the pressing need to place the patient at the core of the healthcare industry’s strategy. “However, it is not an easy move. It is an evolution from the “disease industry,” which is the conventional model, to the “health industry,” focused on prevention.”

At the Fleury laboratories chain, the focus is already on the best patient experience, offering humane services. Technology is the main ally in their strategy. Luzia Sarno, IT corporate director at Fleury Group, reveals that with the use of technological innovations, not only physicians have more time to improve their knowledge, but they can also come closer to the patient, getting to know them and making the treatment more humane. “By learning of a patient’s lifestyle, where they live, and other relevant information, the physician can improve both the diagnosis and the treatment. Technology streamlines processes and gives them extra time to be humane professionals. It replaces the operational and makes room for emotional intelligence,” she stresses.

Robot Da Vinci XI: from a console, doctors control procedures and have a 3D vision of the region of the surgery

To provide an increasingly satisfying experience for all patients, Fleury works with the multidisciplinary groups’ concept. The user experience area (UX) serves the business areas. “We know that applying innovation in all sectors is essential, but it’s different for the healthcare business as it affects lives. Therefore, what is the most important particularity? It is offering a personalized treatment while maintaining the quality,” she says. She adds: “We are also in alignment with the new generation that is concerned with purpose, just as Fleury. Our challenge is to attract and retain the new generation, and innovation is paramount in this journey”.

“It’s the evolution of the ‘industry of illness’, that’s current model, to the ‘industry of health’, focused in prevention”
Carlos Reis, healthcare consultant at Logicalis

Innovation at the service of life

Amid a remarkable technological growth, the Fleury Group launched, earlier in the year, the Fleury Lab, an innovation and digital transformation program that encompasses the development of products, services, research, and partnerships with startups and other firms. It counts with three fronts: Fleury Lab Digital, Fleury Lab Startups, and Fleury Lab Virtual.

The initiative creates unique models of digital service for customers and physicians, acceleration and evolution of the Fleury Genômica platform (e-commerce for genetic testing), digital and expanded medical assistance with the use of technologies such as chatbots, including exam results apps and websites for every brand within the Fleury Group.

Furthermore, it promotes the use of artificial intelligence to detect abnormalities in CT scans and alert the need for prioritizing treatment. Using AI, Fleury ensures 95% of accuracy in identifying, for instance, in an X-ray whether or not the patient has pneumonia. In a Tissue Origen Test, as another example, it is possible to identify the potential source of a challenging tumor and tackle only specific areas. It avoids the use of random, aggressive medications and prevents patient debilitation, accelerating treatment.

An essential piece of the 2018-2020 strategic plan, the Robotics Project has come to add to the Sao Camilo Hospital chain’s innovations arsenal. The Da Vinci XI robot, adopted by the hospital, works from a console from which the physician controls the procedure and receives a 3D image of the area to operate, in addition to a specific table attached to the equipment, which eases the movement and reduces surgery time. The tech is capable of pointing out details unnoticeable by the naked eye. With the robot, it is possible to obtain a 90° rotation that is broader than the human wrist, exhibiting a great wealth of details that enhance surgery’s performance.

According to Caroline Oliveira Novoa, corporate manager of clinical engineering at the Sao Camilo Hospital chain in Sao Paulo, the robot will assist mostly on urology, general surgery and gynecology. “It is expected that, other than ensuring the safety and welfare of the patient experience, which are our primary goals, the project will also highlight Sao Camilo on the market and attract new professionals.”

Novoa notes that, for the patient, this technological evolution means a more precise, less invasive surgery, with less bleeding and a quicker recovery, resulting in a short hospitalization period. For the surgeon, it grants greater precision on areas of hard access, better overall view due to high definition images and improved ergonomics, in addition to the patient’s satisfaction.

Every new Sao Camilo Hospital accredited surgeon must undertake training from 50 to 80 hours, on average, on the simulator, and the certification takes 6 hours. Currently, 11 surgeons are training for getting the certification, adding to those already certified and working at Sao Camilo.

At Sao Camilo Hospital, continues Novoa, technology is present on every process, from appointment scheduling, online delivery of test results, electronic records, and prescriptions. “All of it gathers a huge database that generates information. Information is the keyword. For both physicians and patients, who have changed behavior with the advent of technology, and are currently more involved in their health matters and treatment,” she says.

The Realistic Simulation Room is an initiative that has been providing significant gains for the GRAAC hospital’s daily life. Considered an effective and innovative method to amplify the link between theory and practice in a safe environment, it offers better learning opportunities while contributing to the development of professionals’ skills and competencies as needed, within a controlled and protected environment. “It’s a space that allows errors and professional growth without putting the patient at risk. That was our primary purpose when implementing the Realistic Simulation Room at GRAACC. Another benefit is the learning efficiency, as it allows the use of strategies that retain more information, rising from 5% to 90% with the use of the room.”

Among the new technologies he is eager to adopt, Capobianchi emphasizes IoT. “It enables all information obtained by the monitors (heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen saturation, etc.) that still has to be manually transcript into the electronic patient record, to be automatically inserted.” Furthermore, the Internet of Things can provide relevant time gains for physicians and nurses, who will be able to dedicate more time to the patient, according to the executive. “Automating what must be automated and using technology in favor of humane care service is part of the GRAACC’s hospital core”.