Atrius Health and IBM partner to improve physician-patient experience


Atrius Health and IBM partner to improve physician-patient experience

Didesign021 / iStock

Atrius Health and IBM have entered into an agreement to develop a cloud based service designed to improve the physician-patient experience.

By providing a holistic view of the multiple influences on an individual's health, including social determinants, Watson Cognitive Insights could be designed to support shared decision making between physicians and patients.

Atrius Health is an innovative non-profit healthcare organization with 875 physicians caring for 675,000 patients in eastern Massachusetts.

According to a paper published by Health Affairs, shared decision making, whereby physicians and their patients make healthcare decisions together using the best clinical evidence available, has been linked to numerous benefits for patients, clinicians, and the health care system.

This includes increased patient knowledge, less anxiety over the care process, improved health outcomes, reductions in unwarranted variation in care and costs, and greater alignment of care with patients' values. Despite these benefits, many physicians report challenges incorporating shared decision making technology into their direct patient interactions.

The new solution could be designed to address these challenges by integrating within the physician's workflow in the electronic health record system. It could summarize key cognitive insights about a patient's health status, assemble a de-identified cohort of people similar to the individual, and describe the outcomes of those people under various treatment options.

"Atrius Health is committed to increasing the joy in the practice of medicine for our clinicians and staff," said Steve Strongwater, MD, President and CEO of Atrius Health. "Working with IBM Watson Health offers a unique opportunity to help our Atrius Health clinicians make greater use of the mountains of digitalized information generated daily through our care of patients. The unique capabilities of Watson Cognitive Insights will help our primary care clinicians increase both effectiveness and efficiency. Furthermore, we anticipate this partnership will increase our ability to reliably identify and close care gaps to improve the quality and safety of ambulatory clinical care."

Atrius Health, IBM, Physician-patient experience, US