Top 10 Innovation-Digital Health Stories of 2022
As we begin a new year at OSF HealthCare, we're reflecting on some major advancements in the way we care for patients – with significant advancements in 2022 that have allowed us to meet patients where they are physically and where they are in their health care journey. Together, OSF Innovation and OSF OnCall, our digital health division, launched initiatives that leveraged digital technologies and data for more convenient access and improved patient outcomes..
Those efforts are highlighted here in our Top 10 Innovation and Digital Health stories for 2022.
1. OSF Launches a Digital Hospital at Home program-OSF HealthCare began using new care models, including launching a new hospital at home program. Many patients who qualify have embraced the concept and feedback is that they love getting hospital-level care in the comfort of their own home. Look for this to expand in the New Year.
2. OSF OnCall plugs pregnancy and postpartum care gaps for Medicaid patients-This story highlights one of several remote patient monitoring programs, launched under the Medicaid Innovation Collaborative (MIC) which includes OSF and four federally-qualified health centers. The initiative is a state-funded, 5-year program to use the latest tools and telehealth, paired with digitally-enabled community health workers and community organizations to create scalable solutions to improve access and quality of care.
3. A new vision for diabetic eye exams in primary care offices-OSF HealthCare, like many other health systems had a problem. Too many patients with diabetes don’t get recommended yearly dilated eye exams to check for related retinopathy – the number one cause of blindness in the U.S. OSF Innovation researched and found a recently-approved platform that uses artificial intelligence to diagnose retinopathy within minutes. To date, the equipment from Digital Diagnostics has found 20% of OSF primary care patients have some damage to the blood vessels that lead to the retina.
4. OSF Innovation getting ready to test concussion diagnosis gaming app-If a so called “FlightPath” app works as expected, it will diagnose a concussion within minutes by having users follow a hummingbird in flight and catch it by manipulating the screen and their own body. This story highlights how Dr. Adam Cross and his team of collaborative researchers are creating a game-changing app that could provide sideline diagnosis of sports-related concussions. There are numerous other settings where FlightPath could be used, including on the battlefield and in hospitals and nursing homes.
5. Developing an app to alert health pros to medical misinformation on social media-This effort is a collaboration between OSF HealthCare, the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and the U of I College of Medicine in Peoria (UICOMP) where many health providers are concerned about the damage to individual and community health caused by bad information that goes viral on social media. Like the concussion app in development, this effort also received funding from the Jump ARCHES research and development program.
6. Using simulations to tackle potentially deadly pregnancy-related hemorrhage and hypertension-Maternal mortality rates were in the headlines in 2022 and rightly so, because U.S. rates are the highest of any developing country and research for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released evidence that 80% of deaths could be prevented. So, OSF Innovation launched new training at every one of its hospitals, using simulations with manikins that helped identify problems and reinforced best practices.
7. OSF HealthCare-Bradley University partner to solve pressing health care problems-This year, OSF doubled down on academic partnerships and other collaborations. This latest formalized agreement, with Bradley University, will tap the best and brightest for breakthrough innovations including new medical devices, digital solutions, improved work processes and new service models. Look for more academic partnerships in 2023.
8. OSF Ventures ready to tap third and largest fund under new leadership-Inaugural OSF Ventures leader Stan Lynall decided to step back into a part-time role as he eases into retirement while Mayank Taneja, who was among the early members of a high-performing team, stepped into the position of vice president of venture investments. Based on past success, including nine exits, OSF Ventures heads into 2023 ready to begin investing from its third and largest board-approved fund of $100 million.
9. OSF Innovation creates its own shark tank and partners with a venture start-up studio-These are really two stories in one because they’re part of an effort to develop an innovative mindset among OSF Mission Partners (employees), and to create an ecosystem where those ideas can be vetted; with the best given resources to be developed and eventually commercialized for use by OSF and other health systems.
10. Connecting Chicago-area homeless to health care support-OSF HealthCare strengthened its collaboration with the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) by creating a Community Health Advocacy grant program with financial and other resources to support research and pilot projects. This story explains one of the first efforts piloted will put kiosks with iPads into two shelters to connect those who are homeless with the UIC Pharmacy College to get medications needed to manage chronic conditions.