Increasing Speed-to-Value Through an Agile Approach

January 4, 2018 Koren Cryer

How sector partners collaborated to deliver an integrated data set proof-of-concept within four months.

A recent collaboration between sector partners from Orion Health, Green Cross Health, and the Canterbury and Waitemata District Health Boards (DHBs) accepted an interesting challenge from the New Zealand Ministry of Health (MOH). The goal was to create an integrated data set from existing primary and secondary sources, through an agile approach, and inside of a relatively short time frame – in this case three months. The project took a new approach for collaboration, adopting relevant industry standards, incorporating open APIs, hosting the solution in the cloud, and making use of pre-existing tools–to reduce costs and increase time to value.

The integration of the medication data in this project involved pulling together disparate data sets from multiple sources into one complete referenceable set. Doing this meant utilizing a cloud-based integration solution that could not only communicate between collaborative groups but also create a practical and secure interface for surfacing medication information to patients. In this case, the chosen platform was the Amadeus platform which was used to ingest patient meds data from Waitemata & Canterbury DHBs and Green Cross Health. 

As a proof of concept, the project was an immensely successful endeavour. The only real stumble was in a slight overshoot of the self-imposed deadline of three months, bleeding into four, though this was largely a procedural and not a technical issue. Not only did the team succeed in creating a highly useful amalgamated meds data table for use among the participating partners, but were also very successful in clearly demonstrating the relative time and cost efficiency with which a project of this nature can be undertaken.

This collaboration truly showcased the power of interoperability, that is, the co-ordination of multiple organizations in delivering practical, data-driven solutions to improve patient care and ultimately spare long-term barriers to service for health care providers. The potential for similar projects to create lasting value in other regions is immediately evident.

“It’s great to see sector collaboration and interoperability in action, showing that we can drive greater value from assets we already have, solving sector challenges through good ideas and a willingness to work together.”

– Darren Douglass (Group Manager Digital Strategy and Investment, Ministry of Health NZ)

For a comprehensive run-down of the project, its goals, the timeline, and process, check out the video below. Speakers Darren Douglass (Ministry of Health NZ), Stella Ward (Canterbury DHB), Hamish Franklin (Green Cross Health) and Sarah Walmsley (Orion Health) unpack and detail this exciting collaboration in a highly informative thirty-minute presentation including a short Q&A at the end.

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