Diversity, inclusion and interdisciplinary collaboration are drivers for healthcare innovation and adoption of new, technology-mediated services. The importance of diversity has been highlighted by the United Nations’ in SDG5 “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”, to drive adoption of social and digital innovation. Women play an instrumental role in health care and are in position to bring about significant changes to support ongoing digitalization and transformation. At the same time, women are underrepresented in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). To some extent, the same holds for health care informatics. This paper sums up input to strategies for peer mentoring to ensure diversity in health informatics, to target systemic inequalities and build sustainable, intergenerational communities, improve digital health literacy and build capacity in digital health without losing the human touch.
The COVID-19 pandemic is the first to unfold in the highly digitalized society of the 21st century and is therefore the first pandemic to benefit from and be threatened by a thriving real-time digital information ecosystem. For this reason, the response to the infodemic required development of a public health social listening taxonomy, a structure that can simplify the chaotic information ecosystem to enable an adaptable monitoring infrastructure that detects signals of fertile ground for misinformation and guides trusted sources of verified information to fill in information voids in a timely manner. A weekly analysis of public online conversations since 23 March 2020 has enabled the quantification of running shifts of public interest in public health-related topics concerning the pandemic and has demonstrated the frequent resumption of information voids relevant for public health interventions and risk communication in an emergency response setting.
Based on scientific studies, heart failure is the principal cause of hospitalization among seniors. More than 50% of elderly with heart failure are readmitted to hospital within six months. Readmission is linked with poor compliance with medical treatment and recommendations, emphasizing the need for a tool to help seniors better comply with post-discharge measures. The goal of this study was to identify end-user needs for the development of a coaching solution aiming to support elderly patients but also formal and informal caregivers. End-user needs were identified through interviews with the three end-user profiles: seniors with heart failure and formal and informal caregivers. The results present six categories of needs: daily treatment follow-up; healthcare network communication; transfer of information; synchronization with current digital tools; information access; and psychosocial support. The identified needs will help to develop an eHealth solution to improve care management and coaching after discharge.
This paper presents an architecture which has been developed in order to integrate a routinely used cardiologic EHR system into the health information infrastructure system of the region where the EHR is used. A Service Oriented Approach based on HL7 and FHIR was used, achieving interoperability, security and confidentiality at all levels. The system has been used for about a year and has brought about significant improvements in the provision of care.
The increasing digitalization of medicine stressed the importance of teaching digital competencies in undergraduate medical education. However, in many medical curricula in Germany, medical informatics is underrepresented. Due the upcoming reorganization of medical undergraduate education in Germany, topics previously assigned to medical informatics represent curricular challenges for all medical disciplines. Against this background, experiences from the project DigiWissMed show how medical informatics can support the teaching of digital competencies in all disciplines of medical education. Therefore, interdisciplinary teaching teams of medical informatics professionals and physicians were formed. In different academic years, this teaching teams jointly designed and implemented new seminars to convey digital competencies. The seminars covers topics such as technology acceptance, telemedicine and assistive health care related to the medical specialty. So, in the project DigiWissMed, the practicability and usefulness of interdisciplinary teaching teams to convey digital competencies could be demonstrate. In the digitalization process of medicine, medical informatics plays a key role. For future-proof medical education, experts of this field should be involved in teaching digital competencies, too.
Participating in social activities promotes healthy ageing, whereas loneliness and isolation are known to cause adverse effects on both physical and mental wellbeing. Technology that exists in society today can facilitate healthy ageing. However, a gap can be seen between seniors and technology in today’s internet and communication technological device’s user interfaces. Due to limited prior knowledge of interacting with touch screen devices, seniors sometimes have difficulties using them. This research aims to explore the user interfaces and their elements designed using a human-centered design methodology by involving seniors as activate participants in the design process. This work’s outcome can improve current user interface design practices in touch screen devices, which might be seen as contributing step to understand the gap between seniors and technology.
The main objective of POWER2DM is to develop and validate a personalized self-management support system (SMSS) for T1 and T2 diabetes patients that combines and integrates i) a decision support system (DSS) based on leading European predictive personalized models for diabetes interlinked with predictive computer models, ii) automated e-coaching functionalities based on Behavioral Change Theories, and iii) real-time Personal Data processing and interpretation. The SMSS offers a guided workflow based on treatment goals and activities where a periodic review evaluates the patients progress and provides detailed feedback on how to improve towards a healthier, diabetes appropriate lifestyle.
Using an online survey, we examined the relationships between the perceived usefulness, sensitivity, and anonymity of personal health data and people’s willingness to share it with researchers. An analysis of 112 responses showed that people’s willingness and perceptions are related to the type of the data, their trust in the data’s anonymity, and their personal sociodemographic characteristics. In general, we found that people do not completely trust that their identities remain anonymous when sharing data anonymously with researchers. We also found that they are more willing to share personal health data with researchers if they perceive it as useful for public health research, not sensitive, and if they trust that their identity will remain anonymous after sharing it. We also found that people’s age, gender, occupation, and region of residence may be related to their perceptions regarding the sharing of personal health data.
We evaluated medication reconciliation processes of a qualitative case study at a 1000-bed public hospital. Lean tools were applied to identify factors contributing to prescribing errors and propose process improvement. Errors were attributed to the prescriber’s skills, high workload, staff shortage, poor user attitude and rigid system function. Continuous evaluation of medication reconciliation efficiency is imperative to identify and mitigate errors and increase patient safety.
Record linkage refers to a range of methods for merging and consolidating data in a manner such that duplicates are detected and false links are avoided. It is crucial for such a task to discern between similarity and identity of entities. This paper explores the implications of the ontological concepts of identity for record linkage (RL) on biomedical data sets. In order to draw substantial conclusions, we use the differentiation between numerical identity, qualitative identity and relational identity. We will discuss the problems of using similarity measures for record pairs and quality identity for ascertaining the real status of these pairs. We conclude that relational identity should be operationalized for RL.