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The word has gotten out it appears: Digital Wayfinding and particularly Indoor Navigation on smartphones is a game changer for Healthcare. It will have a dramatic, positive impact on long standing painpoint for patients, visitors and even staff at Hospitals and Healtcare Networks: people get lost all the time!
This has real costs for Healthcare organizations in missed appointments and reduced productivity, while also negatively impacting the patient experience. When a patient - or friend or family member - arrives at a hospital for an appointment, they are already under stress. When you immediately add onto this the added stress of not knowing where to park and getting lost in the maze of corridors, the whole tenor of a visit is affected.
Now, with the ubiquitous use of smartphones and the arrival of Enterprise grade Indoor Positioning solutions such as Cisco MSE, we can finally solve and eliminate this problem once and for all. We all know how powerful Smartphone-based navigation has been in the "outdoor" world. So it is not much of a stretch to understand how quickly it will be embraced by users and adopted by Enterprises.
For Connexient, at least, it seems pretty simple. Over the next decade, users arriving at any large building, facility or campus in the world will come to expect a mapping and navigation experience that is as intutive, accurate and flawless as the one they enjoyed to get their in the first place.
Connexient is dedicated to delivering that experience.
As compelling as the use case, need and ROI for Digital Wayfinding is, it really is just the starting point What our clients are doing when they implement MediNav together with Cisco CMX is building the infrastructure for Indoor Location-based Services of all kinds. Each new integration to other applications, solutions and systems in Healthcare IT will bring increased value and returns to this initial investment.
A couple of simple examples of this are features that Connexient is already developing for our MediNav HIPAA Edition, to be released later this year, to address very compelling use cases.
Thanks to innovators like Mobile Commons and mobileStorm - and their early adopter clients - there is already a strong body of data that demonstrates that the simple act of sending SMS text reminders can reduce missed appointments by up to 30%!
Connexient is taking the next step with its HIPAA Edition to integrate appointment reminders into MediNav. Now users will be able to not only get a reminder, but also enjoy the benefits of our Parking Planner to navigate them directly to the best parking location based on their appointment location, and then navigate them indoors step-by-step to their appointment. And when they are done, our My Car feature gets them back to their parking spot. That's the power of integration!
Thanks to our integration with Cisco CMX and its ability to automatically Detect, Connect and Engage with users arriving at a building things get even more interesting - and useful for end users and clients. Now we know when a patient, visitor - or staff - member has arrived at the Hospital, and exactly where they are. That is powerful.
All kinds of uses cases and features spring from which can greatly improve the patient or visitor experience and simultaneously benefit hospital operations and security needs. One example of this is the concept of an Electronic Check-in - something we are now fleshing out for pilot projects.
And these are just the first simple steps. With further integrations, we can ultimately deliver the same type of effortless Electronic Check-in experience that many of us enjoy today when we take an airline flight.
For any software product or service in Healthcare, HIPAA is always looming out there. We all know that we have an obligation to protect ePHI (Eletronic Protected Health Information), with strict enforcement and draconian penalties for any breaches. At Connexient, we take this very seriously.
As we move down the path to providing compelling features and services like integrated Appointment Reminders and Electronic Check-ins, there is no doubt that we are handling and storing individually identifiable data regarding a users' healthcare services - in other words, we are clearly in HIPAA territory.
HIPAA aside, Connexient is committed to safeguarding and protecting its users privacy - while at the same time providing the great convenience features they want. But in Healthcare it is critical that the HIPAA guidelines be followed.
The MediNav HIPAA Edition is the next important step for Connexient in serving the unique needs of the Healthcare industry. We are addressing all the elements required to ensure that our solutions are HIPAA compliant end-to-end.
With these steps and the release of the MediNav HIPAA Edition, Connexient will be ready, able and eager handle ePHI with full HIPAA Compliance for Digital Wayfinding in Healthcare.
Even more importantly, this is another cornerstone in our commitment to ensure that our clients patients, visitors and staff can realize all of the benefits of Indoor Navigation and Location-based Services across the entire Enterprise.
These integrations with other Healthcare applications and systems will not happen overnight. They will progress in a step-by-step fashion, driven by our clients' most compelling use cases. But Connexient will be ready - and a leader in realizing both the vision of connected Healthcare by focusing on the details of the complex reality of implementation.
To learn more about Connexient's MediNav and the issues and considerations for HIPAA Compliance for Digital Wayfinding in Healthcare, please contact us for a demo and private consultation.
Our debut at HiMSS 2014 proved to be a watershed event for Connexient in every way. There are times when hard work, planning, execution and a good dose of luck all come together, and this was one of them. We found ourselves literally inundated with new clients and prospects as well as new partnership opportunities from many different angles. Our challenge now is to deal with this rapid growth, but that is one we are happy to take on!
If you are interested, you can get a glimpse of the activity on our blog pages:
This blog post, however, will focus on what learned about our business and product direction in all of our client and partner interactions at the show.
When you go to market with a new product, it is always a leap into the unknown. We spent over a year consulting with prospective early adopter clients - listening to their needs, reviewing prototypes and working with staff users on refining early Alpha and then beta releases. Even so, it is only when you deliver to your first clients and end users that you really start to learn what your product will become.
That process then gets accelerated at an event like HiMSS, where we interacted with over 100 hospital and healthcare networks, as well as partners like Cisco that have a broad view of the marketplace.The result of all this was very gratifying in that it validated some of our fundamental beliefs and premises about our product. It also gave new momentum and some sharper focus to the direction we are headed in.
Here is what we learned.
What is important - and appropriate - for Indoor Location-based Services (LBS) in a healthcare setting is very different from what is important at a shopping mall, airport or other public venue dedicated to merchandising and commerce.
The priorities at a Hospital and Healthcare network are things like providing relevant information, reducing anxiety, streamlining and making processes easier for both patients, visitor and staff. This is all part of creating a great Patient Experience - something that Connexient is deeply committed to.
In addition, issues like HIPAA Compliance and ensuring that Protected Health Information stays private and secure add complexity that must be addressed while still keeping the UX simple for an end user. This is particularly important as Indoor LBS will be integrated into clinical and operational applications and processes.
In designing MediNav, we believed from the beginning that integration to other Healthcare applications, platforms and IT would be critically important over the long run. Wayfinding is a big pain point and "killer application" to start with, but what we are really doing is helping our clients to build a digital infrastructure that will enable Indoor LBS to be integrated into the Enterprise wherever it is needed.
Our variant of Metcalfe's Law for Indoor LBS in the Enterprise environment is the following.
The value of an Indoor Mapping and LBS system will increase proportionally to the number of integrations to other applications, platforms and Enterprise IT.
Will it be an exponential return? Perhaps not. But there is no doubt that with each new integration, the return on this initial investment - and the either fixed or decreasing ongoing cost of maintenance - will continue to increase.
At HiMSS 2014, we heard over and over from client's and prospects with their ideas and needs about how Indoor Maps, Navigation and LBS could be integrated into other applications and systems to improve Patient Experience, increase operational efficiency and reduce costs.
One thing that is simple and comes naturally to a small company like Connexient is focus. We were impressed, however, that even very large companies that approached us similarly understood the need to focus on their strengths and form partnerships to deliver integrated solutions that will really help Hospitals, Healthcare Networks and their patients and visitors.
At Connexient, we are focused on just two things.
The first is making and maintaining Enterprise-grade Indoor Maps, Navigation and LBS - and delivering that all in a great user experience (UX) that is truly intuitive and useful. We think this is really hard and takes intense, dedicated effort to do well.
The second is making it easy to bring Enterprise-grade Indoor Maps, Navigation and LBS into any other Healthcare application, platform and system. That journey is just beginning for us with the preview of our API and SDK. But is one to which we are fundamentally committed.
At HiMSS 2014, we began discussions and will soon roll up our sleeves with our first set of Alpha Partners to use our API and SDK. This process will be invaluable in both improving our offering and creating truly useful integrations that easy for our clients to deploy. So, we are excited to begin!
At Connexient, we have a mantra: The Map Really Matters. Based on 17 years of experience in design and implementing Wayfinding systems, Connexient understands that making and keeping a map accurate is hard. What we have learned over the last year is that when you add directions and navigation to the picture to deliver flawless Digital Wayfinding, it gets even harder. If the map and wayfinding data is not accurate, it is useless.
With our current clients - and the vast majority of prospects we have talked to - the capacity and knowledge required for navigation-quality Indoor Mapping simply does not exist today. That's why Connexient is dedicated to providing Enterprise-grade Indoor Mapping services and support on an ongoing basis. Hospitals and Healthcare Networks need to focus on delivering healthcare services - and the complex choreography of technology, processes, knowledge and operations that go into that. The last thing they want to worry about today is maintaining an Indoor Map and LBS data.
What impressed us most of all was the creative energy, enthusiasm and passion for innovation that we heard coming from CIOs, CTOs, CMIOs and other technology leaders at Healthcare Networks and their technology partners.
While the road has been long and hard to get here, we saw a strong vision and understanding that as the different investments in Healthcare IT are integrated over the coming years, the benefits can be truly revolutionary.
Things must move more slowly in Healthcare. At the end of the day, lives are literally at stake. But from our viewpoint, the direction and momentum of technology innovation is enormous and just starting to crest. We think the next 3 - 5 years in Healthcare will be as dynamic and exciting as any technology-driven business revolution that has happened in the last 30 years.
So we have work to do. It is tremendously challenging, exciting and rewarding work, knowing that we are collaborating with both clients and partners that are committed to making a real impact with technology. We are eager to get started!
Day 2 at HiMSS proved to be even busier than our first. So much so that this will be a very short blog post!
Aside from the client and pipeline activity, the key take-away for Connexient from HiMSS will be numerous new partnerships with synergistic applications, solutions and platform providers. Integrations with such partners will enable us and our partners to deliver new levels of value to end users - patients, visitors and staff - and thus our clients.
We will have much more to say on this in the days and weeks to come!
In the meantime, the video below of the Cisco's discussion of Wayfinding powered by Connexient within their Connected Healthcare Experience is a good introduction to the subject.