A HIMSS Recap from America’s Favorite Doctor
Dr. Laura Purdy discusses her key takeaways from HIMSS 2023
In Chicago, IL over the course of 5 days, 40,000 professionals throughout the global health ecosystem gathered at HIMSS 2023 to discuss and discover health tech innovations to solve some of their greatest challenges. OpenLoop sat down with Dr. Laura Purdy, America’s Favorite Doctor and OpenLoop CMO, to discuss her personal takeaways from the conference.
HIMSS: The Conference Where True Innovation Shines
Dr. Purdy has attended the HIMSS conference for many years and she shared that over time her appreciation for this conference has significantly increased, particularly now with her role as Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for OpenLoop.
“What makes this conference unique is that it is not necessarily provider centric or patient care centric (with heavy academics on how to provide “good” healthcare)”, Dr. Purdy tells us. She defines HIMSS as being at the intersection of digital delivery of care and technology innovation.
Purdy depicts the innovations displayed at HIMSS as systems based, technology based and data based, which truly helps streamline the digital delivery of care. “It's not just new companies rebranding the same technology but it's true innovation. At HIMSS, I feel like I can see the future of healthcare on the horizon,” Purdy describes.
Introducing a New Age of EHR Technology
During the interview, we asked Dr. Purdy if there were any technologies presented at HIMSS that really excited her as a medical professional. “One of the most exciting innovations presented was the development of new EHR and digital prescription technologies.”
Purdy recalled that historically, traditional brick and mortar EHR and e-prescription systems have not worked well for virtual care. Even when companies tried to develop versions to fit the digital market, they still were not optimal. This disconnect just exacerbated the fragmentation of in-person and virtual care.
Thankfully, it seems the message that there needs to be greater innovation in the way EHRs and e-prescription transmission systems are created has finally gotten more attention, Purdy mentioned during the interview. She stated that the technologies presented at HIMSS will likely help move the industry towards a world where in-person and virtual care do not exist in vacuums.
“It was exciting to see that real competitors for these systems are in development, and there is starting to be competition where there wasn’t competition before. This is exciting because when there is competition, options get better and cheaper.”
AI: The Overarching Debate
AI is the talk of the town among almost all industries right now and Dr. Purdy told us this was no different at HIMSS 2023. Many companies and organizations revealed their latest AI technology innovations at the conference, however, one overarching question kept coming up—“How and to what extent can we morally leverage AI to deliver healthcare?”
Technically, as of right now, it’s the law that limits AI’s use in healthcare, Dr. Purdy told us. Since the law states that no one or nothing without a medical license can practice medicine, it sparks the debate: how do we define the practice of medicine with AI? And in a world where a clinician can delegate to a nurse practitioner or physician assistant, can these same decision making tasks be delegated to AI?
“I am excited for a future where AI can take the load off of overworked healthcare professionals. It will be a complete paradigm shift, given that everything is so manual right now.” Purdy remarked.
Purdy could feel the excitement increase at the conference when AI was brought up.—It could be the key to solving the physician shortage, increasing access to care and decreasing the overall cost of healthcare (along with so many other long-standing healthcare issues). “As of right now, it's a lot of speculation,” Dr. Purdy stated, “but with the many AI innovations unveiled at HIMSS, we are certainly edging closer.”
Not Just Innovation, But Connection Too
HIMSS 2023 was not just a place where technology was introduced but a place where connections both new and old form. Dr. Purdy recalled how at conferences like HIMSS you tend to see the same faces each year and begin to build connections that go way beyond just business.
“What I love about the conference is the people - often you only see them at these conferences but over the last few years we’ve become close friends. You start connecting on personal things and learn what drives them as people - it’s truly refreshing.”
Driving Digital Solutions Forward
After conferences like HIMSS, it's good to take a step back and see where you fit into the mix, “For OpenLoop, as technology solutions are implemented, we are in a great position due to our flexibility and the fact that we are very modular, adaptable and high speed,” Purdy said. “OpenLoop is also an expert at creating original solutions, so we are in the best spot to step in to help companies and organizations implement these new innovative tech systems.”
In her role as CMO, Dr. Purdy is excited to see OpenLoop play an integral part in supporting these innovative technologies by building new solutions to further virtual care delivery and move toward a more value-based model of care. As “America’s Favorite Doctor”, Purdy looks forward to seeing how technology, like AI, might pick up some of the burden put on healthcare professionals, so they can get back to focusing on their patients.
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