Healthcare and Telemedicine

The Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems’ initiative is addressing technical, business, legal, policy, and strategic issues. These issues are being addressed to support the implementation of telehealth services, incorporating on-site/off-site personnel, and the application of data mining and other emerging technologies.

Purpose and Rationale:

  • Cost effectiveness and Return on Investment (ROI) can be realized in chronic care management, in improving quality and safety, and in engaging patients in self-care
  • Medical personnel in other time zones can interpret and monitor patients during their workday allowing the patient to be cared for during off hours
  • Specialty care and expertise can be provided where such services are not available locally
  • Improved care and outcomes can be accomplished in instances such as trauma
  • Patient/doctor communication can be enhanced by email and video chat
  • Family members can be allowed to age at their own homes with quality health care and dignity
  • Independent living for people with chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and hypertension, can be supported by daily remote monitoring of vital signs

Researchers at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems are conducting activities in several aspects of telemedicine. Areas of current and future interest are delineated below, by category.

Technical issues:

  • Creating new mobile apps to cater to the needs of diverse sets of patients, medical specialties, and operating environments
  • Analyzing different options for addressing the islands of heterogeneous information systems that characterize the domain of Electronic Medical Records, the ole of Health Information Exchanges (HIEs), and the staged implementation of alternative strategies for bridging existing islands of information to create an integrated archipelago
  • Exploring mechanisms that hinder the ability to provide affordable high speed broadband access to communities lacking access
  • Facilitating the creation and adoption of standards for Electronic Health Records (EHRs) to optimize health care delivery locally and across borders to improve quality and decrease costs
  • Supporting mechanisms for real time video-conferencing systems for 24/7 reliability
  • Analyzing issues related to security and privacy, in the context of transmission, storage, and retrieval of personal medical information, including analysis of specific protocols and a consortium-based approach to examine the feasibility of new protocols
  • Analyzing cloud based architecture with centralized data repository for different medical specialties
  • Researching data mining and other emerging technologies and  approaches to achieve major improvements in patient care

Legal issues:

  • Surmounting of differences in policies related to privacy of medical records, including Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) across geographic boundaries that hinder the practice of telemedicine
  • Delineating innovative approaches for addressing medical malpractice issues and other medical disputes across states boundaries
  • Leveraging the provisions of Affordable Health Care Act to widen the geographic area from which medical services can be provided to a patient to enhance quality of healthcare and reduce costs
  • Analyzing new approaches to electronic health records based on the provisions of Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act – a portion of the Accountable Care Act (ACA)
  • Helping to streamline the reimbursement guidelines from government-provided insurers CMS (the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) impact private insurers

Public Policy issues:

  • Building consensus to streamline licensure controls to enable clinical professionals to practice across larger geographic areas, based on the models utilized by the military, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Indian Health Services that enable physicians to practice across state boundaries
  • Fostering consensus to streamline procedures related to accreditation and registration to reduce duplication and administrative costs involved in practicing across state boundaries
  • Encouraging government agencies to initiate revised laws and policies to promote equitable reimbursement of medical services based on virtual collaborations at a rate  equivalent to in-person consultations
  • Assisting government and commercial organizations to discard the need for prior authorization by insurance companies for telemedicine consultations
  • Facilitating adoption of medical billing and coding standards for telemedicine that are accepted over larger geographic areas
  • Educating legislators to realize the value of telemedicine so that can analyze and support new policies in this area of growing importance
  • Promoting awareness of the benefits and cost savings to population at large

Business issues:

  • Developing entrepreneurship opportunities for large companies in diverse areas so that  they reduce the total annual health care bill by substantial amounts
  • Providing critical assistance to nucleate bulk growth of new companies that focus on different segments of the emerging telemedicine market
  • Promoting systematic assessment and evaluation of procedures to improve quality control in this nascent industry
  • Analyzing and fostering new relationships between corporations, government, non-profit organizations, and foundations to attain rapid adoption of new approaches to enhance quality of healthcare services and reduce overall costs
  • Determining of best business practices among national hospitals/clinics, and disseminating such information
 
Videos:
 
Pace University - Vital Care TeleHealth

 
 
Round the clock operations aren't just for call centers anymore
 

For additional information and interest in participation or sponsorship, please contact:

Prof. Jean F. Coppola
Program Coordinator for Healthcare and Telemedicine
(914) 773-3755

 

For a list of current publications, click here