Jack was born and brought up in China, completed his high school in Mexico, and moved to the USA for higher education in his early 20s. During his college years and initial career, he worked in different cities within the USA (Los Angeles, Detroit, Austin, Portland, Las Vegas, SF Bay area). He finally settled with family in the bay area for the last 10 years. He visits his parents in Mexico every year and his parents visit him as well. He is planning to relocate to Canada with his parents.
As Jack has been to so many places, his medical record/PHI is siloed within different healthcare systems and insurance providers’ databases that don’t interact with each other. As a result, there is no master/golden copy of his PHI that captures all his interactions with medical professionals across the globe.
Unfortunately, most of our hospitals and insurance have health record systems that don’t communicate with each other. One of the reasons the health industry has been slow to digitize is due to privacy concerns. Health information is sensitive and it is vital to ensure that it does not fall into the wrong hands.
However, digitizing patients' records and having a master copy of medical records will create a win-win situation for both medical practitioners and patients. :
- An increase in efficiency will lead to time savings in future medical interactions. Reduces average time spent (currently 17mins) by doctors with a patient, thereby enabling them to see more patients in a given day
- Make diagnosis and prognosis more efficient as the doctor will be well informed about the patients’ medical condition.
What it does
Our iCare app allows patients to access, maintain and share their electronic medical records anywhere and anytime with clinicians and care providers. It is a heavily secure platform with end-to-end encryption that helps faster diagnosis and treatment. Also, it can facilitate remote consultations with health care professionals via virtual visits and eVisit by sharing and scanning QR codes.
How we built it
Based on some research, we considered the Buy vs. build approach by doing extensive research on available apps and secured platforms. After we brainstormed our idea, then we did some market research, started working on our slides along with some prototypes using Figma.
Challenges we ran into
One of the biggest challenges we came across was not being able to find an API that provides the data for the PHI. We are trying to solve this problem by leveraging the existing Pictal Health app that captures the patient journey and visualizes them into PHI. Developing the business model is challenging too, so connecting with mentors to figure out the next step. Another potential challenge would be getting approval from regulatory agencies across the globe to facilitate this interaction. However, our product makes patients’ guardian and custodian of their own data assuaging some privacy concerns.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Before this Hackathon, we had little understanding of how the healthcare system currently operates when it comes to PHI. After reaching out to few mentors, who are currently working to solve similar issues in the healthcare system we clearly understood the problem and started thinking about possible solutions.
What we learned
Learned more about the health system barriers, important medical terms, and the day-to-day processes. It's important to brainstorm the idea and understand the problem better. Thanks to our awesome mentors!
What's next for iCare
We hope to pilot our product with the smaller clinics and with selected demographics who are struggling to access and share their PHI. As a result, we hope to fund our platform through grants and partnerships with NGOs, governments, healthcare systems and rely on these sorts of donors and donations to keep our portal as free (or as close to free) as possible.