“One of the main factors of the digital transformation in the medical field is the cloud. Many thought that the coronavirus (Covid-19) vaccines would arrive much later, but this is yet another example of how computing power and data convergence has allowed vaccine developers to get to the stage where they were able to produce the vaccines very quickly. This is due to cloud technology and its unlimited power,” said Roi Hermoni, ATU Lead at Microsoft-Israel during a Calcalist panel at a conference titled “How to succeed during a transitional period.”
According to Hermoni, health organizations are now focused on three main fields: the first is the relationship with the patient, providing a dynamic platform that allows a 360 degree view of the patient’s condition and is a main building block in digital health; the second is communication between medical teams that allows a continuation of treatment without having things falling through the cracks, with all the personal data being stored in a secure and documented way; and the last is making use of the compiled data in a much sophisticated way.
Dr. Ravit Geva, who manages the Oncology Research Unit at Tel Aviv’s Sourasky Medical Center said that technological developments are especially important during the coronavirus period, and that medical teams are overcoming their fear of technology. “We always had the ability to communicate with patients remotely instead of in the hospital, but during the pandemic we learned to use that technology well,” Geva said.
According to her, now that meetings are held remotely, medical teams are meeting more often, which allows them to collaborate with more people. “Today we are talking about how we can collaborate with other hospitals and have medical debates over quality care, and extend that to include debates with professionals overseas as well,” she said. Geva noted that aside from the technological advancements of digital consultations with patients there has also been an increase in the level of personal care. “Patients who for many years had grown accustomed to coming to the hospital are now being treated in their own personal space, where they’re comfortable, and feel relaxed. Suddenly, meeting with patients has become more intimate,” she said.
Co-founder and VP of R&D at Aidoc, Guy Reiner, said that the field they operate in — Radiology, had suffered from an overabundance of data prior to the pandemic without enough radiologists to process the large amounts of medical scans.
“Before the pandemic, this was a field where people knew how to work remotely but the main problem was that there was too much existing data, and this is where our product shines - it’s a system that automatically filters through 80% of a hospital’s CT scans, prioritizes them, and alerts doctors. If we know how to bring data and make it accessible for doctors at exactly the right times, it increases the quality of medical care that the patient receives, and allows doctors to focus on more important things to make them even more efficient,” Reiner said.