This past week, Medgadget was an official media partner with the Healthcareᐩ Expo Taiwan. This four-day annual event brings together healthcare companies from all over Taiwan and the rest of the world. It is also an opportunity for tech companies not typically associated with healthcare, such as ASUS, Intel, and BenQ, to showcase what they’re doing in medicine and healthcare.
The event kicked off with an opening ceremony presided by Taiwan president Tsai Ing-Wen, as well as the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between hospital representatives from Taiwan, the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam, to promote increased collaboration in the area of healthcare.
In between roaming the massive two-level exhibit hall, we sat in on the MedTex Summit Asia, a series of talks from representatives in big tech about their companies’ work in hospital care, followed by a discussion with some of the hospital directors whose organizations are benefiting.
Jonney Shih, the longtime chairman of ASUSTek (ASUS) talked about the three-fold “digital twin” model of major trends in digitally-powered healthcare technology. In the area of precision health, ASUS is endeavoring to better understand a patient by creating a digital twin by utilizing precision diagnostics, personalized medicine, and risk management.
In virtual care, the aim is to create a digital twin of the doctor-patient relationship to better communicate, with a heavy use of remote monitoring, telemedicine, and AR/VR care. In hospital resilience, a digital twin of the hospital can better simulate and extend patient care by utilizing technology in a hospital’s stuff, staff, space, and systems. In Taiwan, ASUS has worked with a handful of hospitals on projects in these three areas, helping to design and build the infrastructure that is open and cross-platform to allow for the addition and implementation of different hospital technologies and medical data.
Next, Brad Haczynski, VP/GM of Network and Edge Global sales at Intel spoke via video about the CPU giant’s work in the healthcare space. He shared that the healthcare industry needs to become less reactive and more proactive and predictable. Intel, he explained, is helping to accomplish this by applying the company’s five “technology superpowers”: ubiquitous computing, pervasive connectivity, cloud-to-edge infrastructure, sensing, and artificial intelligence. The company has three focus areas in healthcare where their technology is being used. In powering the smart hospital, Intel tech is providing clinical insights in near-real time from connected medical devices, servers, and cloud applications. In accelerating scientific discovery: Intel tech powers solutions that range from lab automation to clinical chemistry, mass spectrometry, and genomics for the pharma and biotech industry. Finally, in modernizing digital infrastructure, Intel products are enabling voice/document automation, clinical notes analysis, and real-time video connectivity for telehealth.
Next, David Rhew, Chief Medical Officer at Microsoft shared via video about the company’s work in AI in healthcare. Microsoft is focusing its efforts in three major areas: images, text, and voice. Their image AI technology has been used to help identify signatures in images medical images. Their text AI can search through clinical progress notes and scientific literature to find more effective potential treatments for cancer and other diseases. Finally, Rhew shared about how the “Ambient Clinical Intelligence” AI voice technology from recently-acquired Nuance Communications automatically transcribe patient visits, allowing the doctor to spend more time listening and dialoguing with their patients. According to Rhew, Ambient has been shown to not only reduce overall documentation time by 50%, but also reduce clinical fatigue and burnout by 70%, while increasing patient satisfaction by 83%.
Finally, Eugene Chang and Peter Williams from Oracle shared about how the database company is contributing to research. They first spoke about how Oracle has actually been in the healthcare space for over 44 years; their electronic data capture platform has long been a market leader in managing data from clinical trials and pharma research. They explained that the company is continuing to advocate and create solutions that avoid medical data silos and allow for the easy transfer from 3rd parties using API’s. By integrating of all the data, Oracle’s products can make it easy for AI and other digital health solutions to utilize.
While the MedTex Summit Asia portion of the Healthcareᐩ Expo didn’t showcase any high-tech gadgets or cool demos, it was informative to hear about these tech companies’ interest in healthcare. It was an encouraging reminder that while startups may be disrupting healthcare, there’s still an important place for the big players in transforming lives.
There’s more interesting content from this visit that we witnessed, so stay tuned for more coverage.
Medgadget wishes to thank Ms. Silvia Fan and the Taiwan Institute for Biotechnology and Medicine Industry for hosting our trip!