Oh Canada! Talking healthcare IT with my neighbors up north.

imageThis week I’m traveling through Western Canada with some of my Microsoft worldwide health colleagues who are based in Canada. Along the way, we are meeting with customers, partners and government officials. We started our journey in one of my favorite cities, Vancouver, B.C., which is a very short flight (or a couple hour’s drive) from my home base in Redmond, WA.

WP_20131028_17_11_53_ProVancouver is very much like Seattle, and perhaps even more scenic. When my Canadian colleagues ask me to visit, “yes” is an easy answer. This is the start of a week-long sojourn across the left side of the country. Yesterday, we met with area healthcare organizations at our Microsoft headquarters on Georgia Street just a few blocks from the historic Fairmont Vancouver Hotel where I had the pleasure of lodging for the night.

During our customer meeting yesterday, I provided an overview of Microsoft’s worldwide health and healthcare business. I was joined by Gareth Hall from our corporate group in Redmond who discussed mobility and devices and how a new generation of tablets, smartphones and other devices are improving clinician satisfaction and clinical workflow while providing IT staff with mobile devices they can manage in the enterprise.

I was also delighted to be joined in our customer presentations by two Microsoft partners; one focused on the provider side of the equation, and the other on technologies that help patients better manage their health.

imageOn the provider side of things was, Dr. Lisa Crossley, CEO of VitalHub.  I’ve written about the good work of VitalHub previously on HealthBlog. They offer a mobile charting platform consisting of a powerful server and a user-friendly native app. The VitalHub Server is a lightweight layer that sits on top of whatever clinical enterprise systems a hospital, community physician practice, assisted living facility and/or home care setting already has in place. This mobile healthcare solution aggregates data from multiple disparate EMRs to give clinicians a single, unified, user-customizable view of the patient. The system was designed in close partnership with physicians, nurses and other allied health professionals and fits seamlessly into patient care workflows.

imageAlso presenting at our session yesterday was, Dr. Wendy Graham, of Mihealth. Mihealth improves the quality of healthcare delivery by leveraging smart phones to improve collaboration and communication between patients and care providers, and empowering patients to be an active partner in managing their day-to-day health. Dr. Graham, who’s background is in family medicine, has developed a solution that also gives patients access to their medical information and connects seamlessly to Microsoft HealthVault.

The next stop on our tour is Regina, Saskatchewan, where it promises to be mighty cold compared to Vancouver. Good thing I packed my gloves.

Bill Crounse, MD     Senior Director, Worldwide Health          Microsoft


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