Digital transformation of healthcare using data and artificial intelligence (AI); a tall order, highly innovative and the possibilities, including for patients, are endless. From reliable home monitoring, smart measurement devices, global secure data sharing to predicting patients' care plan and duration of care. You can tell from the overwhelming turnout the topicality of this topic, where we can both use and expect many innovations in the coming years. From our Brightlands campus, we contribute to cooperation and innovations for the benefit of this social task." That is the final conclusion of acting CEO Pieter Custers on the Smart Health Day on 11 December 2023.
Three hundred professionals from the health and care sector took up this theme today. Together with technology experts and other stakeholders, it was a day full of innovation and inspiration. The event provided insights into the power of data and AI for transforming healthcare and reducing healthcare demand.
Developments and trends
The Smart Health Day began with an inspiring series of workshops and presentations, allowing participants to explore the latest developments in health technology and data analytics. The workshops covered:
Personalised lifestyle advice: Esther Bloemen and Inigo Bermejo from Zuyd University of Applied Sciences presented the results of the Carrier project. An engaging session on the potential of AI for personalised lifestyle advice to prevent cardiovascular disease.
Secure personal health environments: Quinten van Geest from BDO Netherlands shared insights on developing secure digital health environments.
Data for life: Wim Eurlings of the South Limburg Regional Cooperation Organisation spoke about sharing patient information in the healthcare chain. A digital environment that promotes data collaboration, that is flexible and agile and thus contributes to healthcare outcomes.
Digital technology in elderly care: Ramon van der Krogt (Open University) and Sonja van de Kragt (Envida) shared their experiences on the use of digital technology so that people can live safely and responsibly at home for longer.
The plenary programme was opened by chairman of the day Tom Jessen and kicked off with a panel discussion in which experts Bert Pfeiffer (CIO Zuyderland), Jos Merx (Member of the Board of Directors De Zorggroep) and Vincent Eversdijk (Chairman Branchegroep Zorg BDO Nederland) discussed the effect of digitalisation on transitions in healthcare. Utility and necessity were contrasted with the inevitable technological developments the sector so desperately needs.
AI as a companion
The day continued with inspiring presentations on the future of the health and care sector. Including those by Kay Liedekerken (general practitioner/medical director of Meditta) and Erik Duijsens (ChipMunk Health) on reliable home monitoring, reducing the need for patients to visit the GP.
Lucien Engelen (Transform.Health/Strategist health(care) innovation Laurentius Hospital) gave a stimulating talk on the importance of prevention, behavioural influence and new health concepts. "In Limburg, we are working on far-reaching changes in healthcare with the use of AI and data. We can be rightly proud of what is happening here in this region: the close cooperation between healthcare experts, scientists, professionals and entrepreneurs, and the innovations being developed here. During my visit to Heerlen, it became clear to me again that we are all motivated to transform healthcare with the help of digitalisation. A little less modesty would not be at all unjustified; there is just a lot happening, but telling it too little. Events like today help with this" according to Lucien Engelen.
André Dekker (MUMC+ and MAASTRO Clinic) spoke about efficiency and effectiveness in healthcare. With technologies that protect privacy where you don't have to move data from global hospitals, but can share it with each other. With insights on 'deep learning' and how we can make use of this in diagnosis. A talk on AI as a companion to make decisions and choices. District nurse Judith Peeters (Meander Groep) spoke about the patient benefits of hybrid care.
The presentations concluded with a keynote by Marcel Levi, chairman of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO), who highlighted the role of scientific research, big data and AI in healthcare.
The Smart Health Demo Square, with contributions from BDO Digital, LIME, DACS (UM), Chipmunk, Strokecoach, Betawerk, Hot Item, Self-measurement Kiosk, Parsek/Open Line, Sananet, Fellowmind, Innerbudies, Smart Robot Solutions, Concoa, Sensiks and Bluetea, offered participants the chance to experience innovative solutions for themselves. Afterwards, the