How MEDITECH is driving AI innovations in health IT

August 17, 2023 |  Physician, EHR, Industry Leaders, Nurse, Patient Safety, Health IT, Events


When considering how AI can be used in healthcare, it’s not simply a matter of identifying processes that computers can do faster than humans. The highly specialized and specific tasks performed within the field of medicine demand a thoughtful approach.

At MEDITECH, our view of AI is driven by an understanding that its use within the EHR should safely enhance the experience for patients, care teams, and health systems. We also believe that AI should support — not replace — the complex work being done every day by healthcare workers.

What’s more, our philosophy isn’t just talk — we’ve been driving the practical application of AI within our EHR platform for years with solutions like Virtual Assistant and Google Search and Summarization, and we have a bold vision for the next generation of AI innovations.

MEDITECH’s innovative approach

Our corporate approach to AI is similar to how we’ve integrated concepts like mobility, interoperability, and surveillance directly into the EHR: We identify the needs that need to be addressed, we gather input and feedback from the people who use our systems, and then we build solutions to meet (and exceed) their expectations.

Based on our experience with implementing AI, we’ve identified six key objectives that guide how we design, develop, and deploy new solutions:

  • Safe: Our AI solutions preserve the fidelity of data, meaning it’s true, up-to-date, and maintained in a secure cloud environment
  • Efficient: We aim to reduce the cognitive burden on providers by decreasing the time they spend manually navigating the chart
  • Impactful: By using AI to cut the time and effort needed to find and share relevant information, clinicians and patients can discuss care plans more quickly and effectively
  • Accessible: Our solutions can be used by healthcare organizations and health systems of any size or profile
  • Effective: We compare AI-enabled systems with other forms of technology that do not incorporate AI to identify the most appropriate solution
  • Accountable: MEDITECH will continuously improve our EHR infrastructure and prioritize the responsible use of patient data, while ensuring that our incorporation of AI doesn’t detract from those goals.  

How we’re using AI today

So, what does that philosophy look like in action?

We’ve incorporated Virtual Assistant and Google Search and Summarization into the Expanse EHR to support communication among patients, care teams, and health systems.

Virtual Assistant uses Nuance speech recognition to respond to verbal commands to place orders and retrieve the information clinicians need and present it at the point of care on a mobile device. 

By using simple voice commands, providers save time in entering orders, finding latest lab results, and reviewing medications, allowing them more opportunity for direct conversations with their patients. 

Providers can easily and quickly review patient history during shift changes, transitions to new care settings, rounding, and appointment prep. 

And with Google Search and Summarization, they can find and retrieve even more information about the patient to help them make the right care decision together.

Google Search and Summarization uses natural language processing to present a longitudinal view of the patient, leveraging structured and unstructured data from Expanse, legacy MEDITECH systems, and scanned documents.

Instead of trying to read through documents that include hundreds of pages, providers use a familiar search function that intelligently organizes and presents condition-related information so that they quickly find answers to their initial search, and can access a longitudinal display of all health data — like labs, vital signs, medications, and notes — to track the progress of each condition.

Google Search and Summarization also lowers the cognitive burden on providers by eliminating the need to manually search through past records and make data more actionable.

This quick access to relevant information helps care teams reduce duplication of orders, identify and address gaps in care, and recognize trends or patterns in the patient’s history that may have otherwise been missed.  

As AI becomes more prominent in healthcare, MEDITECH continues to develop innovative tools within the Expanse EHR to improve the experience for patients, care teams, and health systems.

Learn how clinicians can ask more of their EHRs with MEDITECH's Virtual Assistant.

Read The Virtual Assistant Blog

Written by Rachel Wilkes, Director, Marketing, MEDITECH

Rachel Wilkes is the Director of Corporate Brand and Lead Generation Marketing at MEDITECH. She oversees MEDITECH's corporate communications, branding, events and market research, and serves as executive sponsor of MEDITECH’s generative AI efforts. Over the course of her MEDITECH career, she has also served in various roles in Marketing and strategic Product Management. Rachel is a Certified Product Manager and holds an MBA from Bryant University.