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D. Gordon

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  • OS28 - Bringing Mental Health to the Forefront (ID 46)

    • Event: e-Health 2018 Virtual Meeting
    • Type: Oral Session
    • Track: Clinical Delivery
    • Presentations: 1
    • OS28.03 - Global Experiences in Building Cognitive Digital Health Systems (ID 317)

      D. Gordon, GBS, IBM Canada; Toronto/CA

      • Abstract
      • Slides

      Purpose/Objectives: Digital and cognitive care has the potential to contribute to better and safer care of patients, more effective health providers as well as to the sustainability of health systems world-wide. With increasing digitization of the healthcare world, cognitive systems help organizations unlock new opportunities. In a recent Institute of Business Value study, 4 out of 5 healthcare executives believe that cognitive computing will have a critical impact on the future of their healthcare business and even more intend to invest in cognitive capabilities (IBM IBV, 2016). But what is a Cognitive Digital Health System and how are organizations getting started on these journeys? We will define Cognitive digital healthcare with an example of how cognitive care got started in the mental health domain and provide guidance for organizations wanting to begin their own cognitive journey.

      Methodology/Approach: Cognitive platforms are designed to ingest vast quantities of structured and unstructured information — from numbers and text to audio, video, images and other data. With an increasing volume and velocity of data, cognitive solutions focus on assembling new kinds of data in machine readable forms and on curating information identifying new patterns and insights to accelerate discoveries, treatments and insight. Various cognitive tools and methodologies are proving useful in digital healthcare, including virtual agents, natural language understanding, advanced analytics for risk scoring and predictive modelling and Internet of Things functionality. For example, the IBM #Here4U team with mental health as focus area developed the #Here4U virtual agent for youth in need of support, aiming to reduce bullying, anxiety and addiction with preventative analysis and intervention through digital personal connection that’s available anytime, anywhere. The virtual agent is a set of cognitive technologies, including a conversation agent that responds to text-chats, natural language processing, machine learning and training by identifing presenting issues such as stress, anxiety and depression. After this successful experiment, the team applied the same foundation to build virtual agents for PTSD and for employee mental health support.

      Finding/Results: The team successfully built a mental health virtual agent proof of concept utilizing a cognitively trained chatbot to detect presenting issues. The team then reused the underlying cognitive components and data structures to build other mental health virtual agent solutions An effective approach to understanding cognitive in digital health systems is to create a cognitive program and then fund a series of use cases in a learning environment.

      Conclusion/Implications/Recommendations: Cognitive technologies are so new that cognitive strategies are journeys into the unknown. Unlike traditional technologies, cognitive programs must be designed to explore different linked use cases, iterate, experiment with sets of technologies and pivot in different directions as circumstances, benefits and adoption becomes clearer. Digital Hospitals are complex ecosystems with hundreds of clinical and business processes containing thousands of sub-processes. Cognitive solutions will not be standalone, identifiable applications, but will be capabilities that are embedded through the digital hospital fabric to seamlessly unite patients, clinicians, staff, assets and information throughout the hospital, delivering the right information and resources at point of care at the right time.

      140 Character Summary: An effective approach to Cognitive digital health systems is to create a cognitive learning program and then experiment with use cases built on a common foundation.

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