How a tragic misdiagnosis turned into an opportunity to align practitioners, patients and payers into a force to transform healthcare

 

“My father was misdiagnosed at the emergency department,” says Tashfeen Suleman, CEO of health analytics company CloudMedx. “He suffered from subdural hematoma; bleeding between the skull and brain tissue, due to the medications he was on. The doctors were not able to catch his condition in time and my father ended up in a coma. He had to have an emergency surgery and six months of difficult rehabilitation to survive.”

Thankfully, Suleman’s father is now fully recovered but the experience traumatized him and his whole family. Suleman felt there should be a system that aggregates patient data and makes it available to physicians wherever the patients are. “So, I began working on a fully integrated platform that leverages data analytics to track patients’ medical conditions, provide actionable insights and decide on preventive actions that physicians can take,” Suleman explains.

“I hope physicians can generate patient risk profiles, identify gaps in care and make timely diagnoses to save lives. In addition, patients can have their medical records on the go to show new doctors in case of an emergency or when switching physicians due to a move.” The culmination of work eventually led Suleman to found CloudMedx in 2013.

CloudMedx has since evolved into a suite of physician and patient-facing platforms and mobile applications. When an individual visits a healthcare institution for the very first time, data from that trip would be entered into the EMR system. If the institution happens to be a subscriber, the EMR is automatically synchronized with the CloudMedx system, to create a profile of the patient. The patient can then access his/her medical record via the CloudMedx mobile application and take it with them wherever they go or to other doctors who have also signed up for the service.

To help healthcare institutions with improving patient outcomes at a lower cost, CloudMedx also provides data aggregation, risk stratification, gap analysis, care coordination and quality performance reports to physicians. If patients are found to have higher risks, physicians can prescribe medications, modified diets, or introduce exercise routines to change or even reverse certain outcomes.

All these allow individuals to take control of their health rather than wait until something catastrophic arises. According to Suleman, such proactive measures are responsible for as much as 90% of healthcare costs that are coming from chronic conditions including diabetes, pneumonia, hypertension, COPD, stroke, congestive heart failure and heart attack. At scale, it can also save the healthcare system billions of dollars every year.

“We decided to take an aligned approach, by converting disparate healthcare data into holistic, actionable information and uniting healthcare across the continuum,” said Suleman. “The majority of the healthcare IT space is littered with individual solutions. So we developed CloudMedx into a one-box solution with physicians having real-time access to patient data for evaluation or generation of reports without needing other IT support.”

CloudMedx mostly focuses on physician organizations such as accountable care organizations (ACOs), physician hospital organizations (PHOs), independent physician associations (IPAs), and federally qualified healthcare centers. They also have clients from emergency rooms and hospital health systems focused on reducing hospital readmission rates. The company was able to bring six physician organizations and about 150 physicians on board within months of its beta version launch in July 2014.

CloudMedx also introduced chatbot AskSophie and new digital tools in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic to assist individuals in assessing their risk of contracting coronavirus, to keep track of vaccine distribution, and to help businesses make informed decisions. “We believe healthcare is a fundamental right for everyone, and we are tackling the greatest public health challenge by, again, aligning intelligent insights from providers, payers, and patients, to improve care at scale,” says Suleman. “Healthcare is a village. With the current pandemic growing in numbers, it becomes paramount to initiate broader collaborations between clinical and tech partners, to join forces and gain insights that we can act on.”