In an effort to improve hospital efficiency, GE has tagged $2 billion for software investments in the healthcare space.
The company will invest in software and app development “ to advance current and future offerings in order to address new and pressing operational and productivity challenges faced by healthcare organizations around the world,” it stated in a press release. It will make investments in the US as well as emerging nations. The investments will focus on efforts to care for more patients, reduce costs through workflow optimization, and minimizing redundancy.
“GE is investing in software and analytics to better help our customers manage the operational complexity of the healthcare system,” said John Dineen, President & CEO, GE Healthcare. “These new software solutions will look to connect caregivers in a meaningful way to the systems upon which they rely, enabling them to deliver better informed diagnoses and improved care.”
GE Healthcare will design new applications in conjunction with its software development arm and research hubs.
Technology is drastically changing the modern healthcare system. The federal government has mandated that all medical facilities switch to electronic hospital records. Health care providers are offered “meaningful use” checks as incentives to switch to digital records, or face penalties by 2015. These upgrades have been expensive, but the switch to digital should bring about an overall cost savings.
GE is trying to capitalize on these efforts, as well as cut out waste in its own systems. It has a team of over 3,000 software developers working on ways to improve medical information management, particularly through increased data, analytics, connectivity and insight into operational and departmental processes and workflows. It has also made strategic investments into a number of business software development companies such as Pivotal.
“Healthcare has always relied on ’big data,’ and the need to understand data is even greater now. What is important is how we use data,” Dineen added, “providing the right technology that allows physicians to pinpoint the right diagnosis; match it to the right treatment; and make more informed decisions.”