We are here to augment what man does. This is not man vs. machine. This is man plus machine.

Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM

The HIMSS 2017 Conference in Orlando amassed 40,000 of the brightest minds in healthcare. Patient engagement was the front-and-center theme this year with nearly all exhibitors focusing on how they can improve the patient’s digital journey. Much of the conversation focused specifically on engagement through technology, a topic that will likely remain relevant while providers look to solve “man vs. machine” divide. Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM, made an intriguing statement during her keynote on IBM Watson’s influence in healthcare:

“We are here to augment what man does,” Rometty said. “This is not man vs. machine. This is man plus machine.”

Providing technology to engage patients doesn’t inherently provide an optimal patient experience.  However, healthcare systems that thoughtfully integrated and design technology can improve patient engagement. My colleague Francois Toubol touched on this point in his blog when he discussed patient portals. As he mentioned, engagement does not come from the mere existence of a patient portal. This reality applies to nearly all technologies within the digital ecosystem.  

A majority of the sessions and exhibits at HIMSS 2017 highlighted technologies for patients already within the treatment ecosystem. Patient discovery and access play a vital role in engaging patients seeking care. Elegant navigation to all implemented technologies will allow providers to take that leap forward for both engagement and experience. But healthcare still has a long way to go to connect these world-class technologies.

At SIM Partners, we seek to connect patients searching for care while optimizing their digital journey.  Velocity Health can provide that crucial connection needed for discovery, access, and retention. Doing so enables engagement for future patients and enhances the experience for those currently receiving care. HIMSS 2017 demonstrated that healthcare is taking a leap forward on patient engagement. But a lot of work must be done to provide a great patient experience. Contact us to discuss how we can help you apply technology to improve patient engagement throughout the journey.