New COVID-19 Early-Warning System Will Debut in July

New COVID-19 Early-Warning System Will Debut in July. A digital street map map with pins identifying certain locations and COVID-19 cells identifying sources of infection.Tracking the emergence of suspected and confirmed new COVID-19 cases in real time has been frustrating during the pandemic. Progress has been hindered because vital patient data are often trapped in siloed electronic health record (EHR) systems that don’t communicate well with each other.

To help address this situation and make it easier to treat new patients as well as contain COVID-19 transmission, Geisinger Health System in Danville, Pa., has partnered with Charlotte, N.C.-based Stanson Health, a Premier Inc. company, to develop an artificial intelligence-enabled solution. The EHR-agnostic, free, real-time surveillance app sifts through volumes of ambulatory, emergency department and other provider documentation in real time for unstructured phrases that suggest COVID-19 symptoms such as, “loss of taste,” “trouble breathing,” and hundreds of other phrases that initially might go unnoticed.

The solution could provide early-warning capability, forecast surges and help plan coordinated responses, notes a recent Harvard Business Review report authored by several Premier clinical and innovation leaders.

The app integrates with a decision-support tool used by more than 200,000 physicians and other clinicians as they order medical imaging procedures across nearly 35 health systems. When imaging is ordered, the app — with appropriate permission — can access the patient record. Geisinger Health will begin using the app in July, with Atrium Health, AdventHealth, Community Health Network and other health systems planning to implement the system soon thereafter.

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