Axial’s Care Transition Suite Wins “Ensuring Safe Transitions from Hospital to Home” Mobile App Challenge

In a recent online discussion I had concerning an article I recently wrote, the point was raised that for an app or device to be successful it must fulfill a need.  While I don’t think that it is absolutely essential to success, it certainly makes the path to success much more realistic.

Filling a need is exactly what the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ competition was all about.  According to the press release the competition “invited healthcare application developers around the country to devise an intuitive application that dealt with the very real problem of moving a patient into and out of a hospital safely and efficiently.”

Here are some of the highlights from the press release, as well as from Fierce Mobile Healthcare’s interview with Jean-Luc Neptune, senior VP of Health 2.0, which ran the challenge for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.

Axial’s Care Transition Suite puts tablet, laptop and mobile phone technology to work to better ensure that patient information flows automatically between care settings. Axial also creates an interactive care plan that enables patients of all ages to take control of their aftercare. Axial’s solution reduces readmissions, increases patient satisfaction, and saves time and money across the healthcare delivery network. Vital patient information is often lost in care provider hand-offs – gaps that compromise quality of care and costs.

I think just about everyone has been to see a doctor and felt like they told ten different people the exact same information.  It is also highly likely that information could be inaccurately transferred as it passes from caregiver to caregiver.  If that critical information can be more accurately and quickly handled then care will inevitably improve.
“Two thirds of patients can neither describe their diagnosis or state the purpose of their medications,” said Joanne Rohde, CEO, Axial Exchange, Inc. “Our application not only engages patients, but also ensures that information flows to all caregivers in a way that benefits health systems, payors, and patients.”
Again, if information can be more accurate and efficient, we all benefit.
The suite is essentially a third-layer product that pulls data from inpatient, ER, pharmacy, testing and other systems to create central summaries that follow patients “from ambulance through inpatient and post-discharge,” Neptune says. For example, EMS teams input patient data during transport and that data is pushed to a care summary for ER physicians ahead of the patient’s arrival at the hospital. Post-discharge summaries are automatically generated and sent to the patient’s physician and the patient’s own smartphone or tablet, according to company officials.
This is clearly a simplification of what this product offers, but isn’t that exactly what they are shooting for?  Maybe the real question is why the process has become so complicated in the first place, but that is likely a topic for a whole different article.
I read about app competitions all of the time, but for some reason never see the results.  It is nice to see that some of these competitions actually bear results, and in this case it seems like a quality product.  The competition was won with a prototype so it will be interesting to see how the development progresses in the future.