Health care technology for Austin on display

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Seton Healthcare Family and nonprofit technology advocate group Texans for Economic Progress teamed up July 29 to showcase ways to integrate innovative technologies into the developing medical district along I-35.

Six different startup groups showed examples of how they hope to get patients more involved in their own health care by integrating technology to meet the needs of care providers.

“If you look at your smartphone, your smartphone isn’t just a phone. If you’re looking at [the]med-tech [industry]right now, it’s really in the first stages of innovation,” said Cliff Bleustein, Dell Inc.’s chief medical officer and global head of health care consulting.

Panelists discussed several examples of immediate innovations already taking place. Examples included advanced nipple reconstruction for breast cancer patients, user interfaces that show users their health care costs now and in the future based on their daily habits, and applications that take into account data from a user’s mental and emotional state so a care provider can better diagnose patients.

Bleustein said the obstacle will be teaching health care providers how best to use the new technology as it emerges and integrating new technology with older, existing methods.

“The challenge in health care is not finding the next great technology. Every technology you’re introducing into a hospital environment requires them to change their workflows, change the way they think about care … which is always a challenge,” Bleustein said.

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Jennifer covers Austin City Council, its various committees and local business news. After covering Florida's 2013 legislative session she graduated from Georgia Southern University and joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2014.
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