Validating digital health innovations

UPDATED . 3 MIN READ

Several AMA initiatives align physician perspectives with the digital solutions being developed by today's tech health community.

Physicians can influence the development of new digital health solutions through the Physician Innovation Network, an AMA platform that connects physicians with health tech entrepreneurs and other innovators across the industry.  

The AMA Interaction Studio at MATTER goes one step further by providing emerging companies the opportunity to test solutions in a simulated physician practice while gaining physician feedback. MATTER is a Chicago-based health technology incubator, home to more than 200 digital health start-ups working with physicians to solve common health care frustrations.

Health2047 is an AMA-backed venture that develops digital solutions by uniting technology firms, product companies, providers and payers with AMA’s expertise and physician relationships.

Living at the intersection of health care, technology and data science, you’ll find this Integrated Health Model Initiative (IHMI). IHMI envisions improving health outcomes for all through high quality, accessible, evidence-based data to enable physicians and patients to make effective decisions.

Acting as a voice for physicians and patients within the health informatics community, IHMI delivers AMA mission impact and recognition by leading and contributing to initiatives with influential stakeholders who are focused on creating high-quality, accessible data. This work includes collaboration with AMA business units to influence policy and data standards, development of open data standards such as HL7 FHIR Implementation Guides, and development of software prototypes to evaluate opportunities to advance the adoption and effective use of data standards in health care.

The explosion of health apps and associated devices offer potential for improved patient wellness and engagement, but apps that don't work could have harmful effects. 

The industry collaboration Xcertia is dedicated to improving the quality, safety and effectiveness of health apps by fostering safe, effective and reputable mHealth solutions.

As a founding member of Xcertia, AMA is committed to supporting the development of valuable mHealth products that increase physician and patient confidence and help people achieve their health and wellness goals. Mobile health application guidelines (PDF) were published in 2019 by Xcertia, Inc.—focused on topics such as privacy, security, content, usability and operability—for use across the health care ecosystem.

The formal collaboration under Xcertia ended in 2020, however, the AMA and the initiative’s founding members including HIMSS, American Heart Association and DHX Group, recognize that strong guidance around app development and usage in health care remains critical. Under the leadership of HIMSS, Xcertia continues as a new Health App Guidelines Work Group, which continues to inform and evolve the Xcertia Guidelines.

AMA advocacy centers on removing roadblocks to physician success. In 2016, the AMA adopted a wide-ranging set of policies designed to help integrate the burgeoning field of mHealth into clinical practice. The AMA works for digital effectiveness in the following areas:  

  • Health information technologies, including telehealth should be accessible and affordable.
  • Regulatory requirements should be simplified and flexible enough to accommodate emerging technologies, new models of care and physician payment.
  • Unessential tasks and administrative burden should be eliminated.
  • Technical standards should be implemented for the secure transfer of health data.
  • Policies should be developed for sharing patient information between physicians, patients, health systems, medical registries and others.

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