Monday, 11 June 2012 15:05
Initial research fellow developing innovative uses of data in healthcare.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is teaming up with San Diego’s West Wireless Health Institute to sponsor an “Innovator in Residence” who can help entrepreneurs understand and leverage the massive amounts of new health data flowing from Washington.
HHS has actively sought to open access to government health data via its Open Government Plan’s Health Data Initiative and health.data.gov web site and has encouraged innovators to use the data as fuel for the creation of novel health applications and services.
But while the private sector has created tremendous value from other government data, such as detailed weather information from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, it has so far failed to create similar value from government health data, says Mohit Kaushal, the institute’s executive vice president of business development and chief strategy officer.
“People are still confused about the types of emerging business models and value propositions out there,” says Kaushal. “The Internet has democratized the distribution of information, but not in healthcare.” Now, HHS and West Wireless will jointly fund the work of health IT expert Pierce Graham-Jones to help change that.
Graham-Jones most recently served as strategy lead for the Beacon Community Program through the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT. There, he was responsible for developing strategy for a $250 million program to demonstrate how investments in health IT can advance patient-centered care. He has also served as an expert advisor to the Federal Communications Commission’s first healthcare team and as a case team leader at the Monitor Group, a management consulting firm.
“By hosting our innovator in residence, HHS is creating an active interface between the government and the entrepreneurial community to help explore what additional data can be made available to improve healthcare,” says Kaushal.
Graham-Jones starts his residence program in Washington D.C. and will eventually travel to connect with entrepreneurs nationwide. If the program is successful in accelerating the pace of innovative applications of HHS data, it will likely be continued and expanded, says Kaushal.
By MICHAEL FITZHUGH