Epic unveils patient data research initiative, new software

At Epic's User Group annual meeting Aug. 27, CEO Judy Faulkner and other executives revealed several initiatives and products the EHR vendor is focusing on to support evidence-based patient care research and enhanced clinical workflows, Wisconsin State Journal reports.

Ms. Faulkner highlighted Cosmos, a new Epic program that is designed to mine data from millions of patient medical records at various health systems to help research the effectiveness of treatments.

"This will revolutionize healthcare, when the [physician] has evidence-based medicine from 230 million people," said Ms. Faulkner, according to the report. "It will be a cosmic … leap forward."

Cosmos currently gathers de-identified patient data from 8 million individuals at nine health systems. An additional 31 healthcare organizations have signed on to participate in the program, increasing the total anticipated number of records to be included at 25 million in the next few months. Eventually, more than 200 million patient records could be involved, the publication reports.

Cosmos supports robust research on topics such as drug side effects, including short-term and long-term issues like drugs possibly increasing dementia risk. The program "will be able to be searching through and finding those associations before they're noticed by a human," said Epic CMO Sam Butler, MD.

In addition to Cosmos, the EHR giant also announced several new products including software that will allow physicians to write shorter notes and clinic visit summaries and voice recognition software designed to allow physicians to conduct patient visits without the use of a computer keyboard. The voice recognition technology is currently a prototype, and it could be available in three to five years, according to the report.

To access the full report, click here

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