In eras past, entertainment, aerospace, fashion, consumer products, and tourism have radically transformed and diversified the L.A. economy. Today, we are at a major inflection point in another area: the crossover between health care and technology is poised to thrust Los Angeles forward at remarkable speed. Area health care organizations such as Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Good Samaritan Hospital, Huntington Memorial Hospital, and Dignity Health are embarking on health technology initiatives that will transform their operations and change the way health care is delivered in Los Angeles.

Much of this conversion is driven by “Big Data” – vast amounts of information that is captured, aggregated, analyzed, and turned into predictive modeling that provides critical information about patterns in health and disease to inform potential treatment options and minimize inefficiencies and waste from the health care system.

Los Angeles must accelerate even more to keep up with, much less surpass, other regions such as Washington, D.C.-Baltimore; Boston; Austin, Texas; and the Bay Area-Silicon Valley, which are all moving forward in health IT at blinding speed. If we want to make Los Angeles the health technology mecca, we need look no further than these three categories of organizations that are already leading the way:

Accountable Care Organizations are using data and technology to advance the “Triple Aim.”

Health care organizations are becoming data-driven enterprises as a means of achieving the Institute for Health Care Improvement’s “Triple Aim”: improving the patient experience of care, improving the health of populations, and reducing the per-capita cost of health care. In accountable care organizations, a delivery model in which a network of doctors and hospitals share financial and medical responsibility for providing coordinated care to patients while limiting unnecessary spending, administrators rely heavily on data to identify and address gaps in quality, risk, utilization, and medical history insights.

Medicare reported in 2014 that ACOs saved more than $380 million in the first year alone. The L.A. region was an early adopter of ACOs, and as our medical community continues to transition to value-based care, it will increasingly rely on data solutions that help to improve clinical and quality outcomes as well as financial performance.

Many of our regional hospitals and health systems are redefining their organizations through technology and Big Data.

At a recent Health Care Information Management Systems Society conference, the largest health IT conference in the world, Cedars-Sinai representatives presented research on how cloud analytics and related technologies improve and scale remote patient monitoring to detect deterioration in heart failure patients well before symptoms appear, preventing needless hospitalization. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles bases its pediatric research in its Center for Innovation, which oversees the Consortium for Technology and Innovation in Pediatrics and is associated with more than 30 active technologies.

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