IBM expands health analytics group

IBM is expanding its Health Analytics Solution Center. The center will be adding new technology and doubling the number of technologists focused on health analytics. The group works on IBM solutions for electronic medical records and remote patient monitoring through devices like smart phones.

The center is located in Dallas and will be using some of the same technology used in IBM’s famed Watson to understand the meaning and context of medical information. Technologists at the center will also be using health analytics technology to work with health care providers and organizations on crafting solutions to managing the rapid growth of health data. The center has worked with nearly 150 health care organizations on these issues since it opened in 2009. According to the company, health data managed by these groups increases 35% per year; North America is expected to reach close to 14,000 petabytes of health data by 2015.

Physicians and clinicians are two of the most rapidly growing groups of people using tablets and smart phones to manage their daily workflow. The company is focused on solutions that allow for more streamlined work management by providing ways for health care providers to update patient information through mobile applications, SMS, voice or a combination. IBM is working with voice recognition programs from Nuance Communications, Inc. to offer these solutions.

Technologists will also work on remote patient monitoring which allows health care providers to monitor patients while they are at home. Remote patient monitoring can open up hospital beds more quickly, while allowing patients to recover in settings they prefer.

The center is the first of its kind and provides clients access to health analytics experts, technical architects and specialists.