Google Care Studio has unveiled a new mobile version of its clinician-facing search tool that helps organize patients’ medical records. The company pitches this new modality as a way for doctors to check in on a patient or access patient information on the go.
“I’m really excited because one of the big challenges that we see in the healthcare space for providers is context switching. There’s so much information to try to understand in the moment and make split second decisions. Clinicians have to do this all day long,” Paul Muret, VP of Care Studio, told MobiHealthNews. “It can get completely overwhelming for them. And so being able to provide that additional summarization and searchable information so they can go ask a question whenever they need to is super critical.”
Care Studio was previously unveiled on desktop, however Google is pitching the mobile version as a way for doctors to use the tool on the move.
“The mobile app is really designed to solve this kind of context switching problem, so that when the clinician is literally walking down the hallway and they’re talking with, let’s say, one of their nurses about a specific patient in the lab, and they just come back like, oh, have they ever had this other medication before?” Muret said.
Currently Google is in the process of acceptance testing with Ascension and Beth Israel. The company is looking to pilot the tool in Q4 with Ascension.
“With our Care Studio mobile app, we’ve built a unified view of patient information that’s easy to navigate right from your smartphone,” Dr. Peter Clardy, senior clinical specialist at Google Health, said in an information video. “After signing in, it’s easy to find your patients. The app brings together information from different EHRs across your health system.”
Doctors are able to use the system to access a patient summary, as well as a “one-liner” provided from a previous note and a link back to the source. Providers can also quickly check a patient’s location, allergies and medications. The tool is designed to present vitals and labs, with the most recent ones presented closer to the top.
In terms of privacy, Care Studio says its services are “provided as part of commercial agreements. We don’t own patient data, and our contracts and applicable law allow us to use the data only to provide services to our customer or for purposes permitted or required by the business associate agreement.”
WHY IT MATTERS
A study from the Mayo Clinic found that EHR usability is linked to clinician burnout. The company is pitching this as a way to help clinicians access medical information more easily and on the go.
This also marks yet another move for Google in the healthcare space. Muret noted that the company is working in the consumer, enterprise and public health space.
“Google Health is really a company-wide effort with the vision of really helping billions of people be healthier, and their efforts span across different parts of the company,” Muret said.
THE LARGER TREND
In February, Google announced the creation of Care Studio. The tech initially began its pilot with Ascension and then expanded to working with a group of clinicians in Nashville, Tenn., and Jacksonville, Fla.
But it hasn’t always been smooth sailing for Google’s efforts in this space. In 2019, news broke that Google had been working with Ascension on a “secret” Project Nightingale involving patient data since 2018. This collaboration brought up privacy concerns among patients, clinicians and legislators.