Google plans to bring its Care Studio clinical software into Meditech's electronic health records system, the companies said Tuesday at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society trade show in Orlando, Florida.
Google Health and Westwood, Massachusetts-based EHR vendor Meditech will work together to embed Care Studio, an EHR search tool that's separately been piloted at St. Louis-based Ascension, into Meditech's Expanse EHR. Care Studio standardizes patient data and offers an interface where clinicians can search for details within a patient record to quickly find information.
Read more: Ascension to expand pilot of Google EHR search tool
The search capability uses artificial intelligence to understand medical data, so clinicians can search for phrases or abbreviations that aren't verbatim how information is written in a patient chart.
Google Health last week at the ViVE health IT conference in Miami Beach, Florida, also unveiled a feature that uses natural language processing to parse through patient records and create a summary view gathering data related to specific conditions.
"To best support clinicians, we need to fit into the way they work now," said Paul Muret, vice president and general manager of Google Health's Care Studio team, in a blog post published Tuesday. "Collaborations with EHRs, like Meditech, will help us seamlessly integrate Google Health tools into existing clinical workflows, so we can help remove friction for clinicians."
The collaboration with Meditech marks the first Care Studio partnership that Google Health has announced with an EHR company.
Google Health hopes to integrate with other EHR companies, according to a company spokesperson, who declined to share financial details of the partnership with Meditech.
Google Health is in the early stages of the partnership with Meditech, which will start with piloting the Care Studio integration to get customer feedback.
"This is the first step in a long-term collaboration between Meditech and Google Health," said Helen Waters, Meditech's chief operating officer, in a news release. It builds on a separate partnership Meditech struck with Google Cloud in 2019 for the tech giant to host a cloud-based version of its Expanse EHR.
Care Studio was first piloted at Ascension, as part of a controversial partnership the health system struck with Google in 2018—which sparked concerns from some privacy advocates about how patient data was protected. Ascension and Google have maintained that the partnership is covered by a business associate agreement they signed, as required by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.
Ascension expanded its Care Studio pilot in early 2021, and later that year Boston-based Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center announced it would also pilot Care Studio.
Google does not own or sell patient data from its Care Studio partners, Muret wrote in his blog post, and patient data cannot be used for advertising. The use of patient data with Care Studio complies with healthcare regulations like HIPAA, and patient data is encrypted and housed in a controlled-access environment that's separate from other Google customer and consumer data, he added.