Huawei's "Smart Hospital" Solution
The 21 century has seen a fast population growth, an increasingly aging society, and frequent natural disasters. In a deteriorating ecological environment, people are more aware of their health and have higher requirements for the healthcare insurance system. Hospitals need to leverage information and communications technology (ICT) to improve their operational and management efficiency and lower their operating costs to ensure people's health while contributing to sustainable social development.
1 Hospitals' Demands for and Challenges in IT-based Development
In the past two decades, hospitals experienced an IT-based development process. At the early stage, the development was focused on administrative management and then on doctors' diagnosis. Now digital hospitals focus their development on how to better serve patients. "Smart Hospitals" are based on digital hospitals and require a number of new medical applications to serve patients, such as network services, mobile healthcare, remote healthcare, and health management. However, the application of new services has caused numerous obstacles to hospitals on their way to IT-based development.
- Each hospital has a number of important information systems that are independent from and incompatible with each other, such as the outpatient, inpatient, examination, scientific research, office, and other systems. The coexistence of so many independent systems makes communication, collaboration, and unified management a difficult task. Hospitals need to consolidate their healthcare information systems to have a comprehensive and clear picture of their operating status.
- Hospitals also need to manage their information resources in a unified manner to achieve their comprehensive operating goals, including efficient utilization of resources, deployment of new services, energy conservation, security control, and cost reduction.
- Primary medical care institutions are short of IT support, so it is difficult for them to provide medical services of the same quality to the public.
- Health management for chronic illness sufferers outside hospitals is difficult and needs to be conducted in communities and households.
- Medical resources are densely located in large hospitals in big cities. The distribution of medical resources is unbalanced.
Figure 1-1 Three stages in the IT-based development process of hospitals
To fit in with the modern and IT-based development of hospitals, the "Smart Hospital" solutions need to resolve problems in the following three aspects:
First, IT-based medical services: Build a Web-based, paper-free, and PPT slide-free office;
Second, management of information resources: Consolidate information and applications to take advantage of IT;
Third, service orientation: Stimulate demands for IT-based development, break the boundaries caused by time and space, fully exchange and share information, and strive for continuous innovation.
2 Huawei's "Smart Hospital" Solutions
IT development plays an increasingly important role in operations of modern hospitals which need to better leverage IT to achieve communication collaboration, service coverage, and resource consolidation. After thoroughly analyzing the medical industry's needs for IT-based development, Huawei has launched the "Smart Hospital" solutions to facilitate exchange of medical information resources. All healthcare subsystems are converged based on EMR.
Figure 1-2 Overview of Huawei's "Smart Hospital" solutions
- Extended coverage of IT-based medical services
- Consolidated and optimized medical services
- Open and cooperative solutions
In addition to ensuring traditional hospital management and IT-based clinical treatment, Huawei's "Smart Hospital" solutions also support abundant medical services, such as mobile healthcare, remote healthcare, chronic illness management, and healthcare cloud.
The healthcare cloud enables hospitals to optimize and reuse information resources, expand capacity elastically, conduct security controls, and operate with less energy consumption. It also helps hospitals build an EMR-based integrated information platform to collaborate on and optimize medical service processes.
The open and converged platform allows Huawei to cooperate with various IT-based medical applications providers to maximize the utilities of these applications.