POW! HIT! People & Organizations improving Workflow w/Health Info Tech
POW! HIT! People & Organizations improving Workflow w/Health Info Tech

@EHRworkflow Blog

The is a "sidekick" blog to my main blog EHR Workflow Management Systems at ChuckWebster.com. There I publish long, complicated, thoughtful blogs thousands of words in length. Here? Not so much. It's mostly for snippets of content too big for a tweet but too small to grace the main deck of the mothership.

If you're looking for my POW! HIT! Profiles, they're here (explanation and most recent) and here (alphabetical index). POW! HIT! stands for People and Organizations improving Workflow in Healthcare with Information Technology (or Ideas and Technology, depending on context). However, I'll write or post content relevant to POW! HIT! on this and the mother blog. Thanks for stopping by. Please leave a comment!

Chuck Webster MD MSIE MSIS

With degrees in Accountancy, Industrial Engineering, Computational Linguistics, Artificial Intelligence, and Medicine, Dr. Webster can see around corners. He designed the first undergraduate program in Medical Informatics, was CMIO for an EHR vendor, and wrote the first three winning applications for the HIMSS Davies Award for EHR Ambulatory Excellence. Chuck opines about healthcare workflow and related and unrelated topics from @wareFLO (#HIMSS13 Top Tweeter) and DMV: the District, Maryland, and Virginia.

My main blog is EHR Workflow Management Systems at ChuckWebster.com. Some posts are 5000 words or more! Here is for larger than a tweet, but smaller than a novella.

MModal.com on Language & Workflow 7: How Important are Context and Pragmatics?

7. But I'd like to shift gears now, over to the computational linguistics and natural language processing side. Computational linguistics, the science behind the NLP engineering, includes conversation (discourse) and achieving goals (pragmatics), not just sounds, syntax, and semantics. Where do you see medical language technology going in this regard?

"Again, you hit it dead-on – in the past, people have ignored the pragmatics aspect. At M*Modal we have been focused on pragmatics since the very beginning. Where it’s all going is being able to understand the content of speech, using semantics and syntax to understand what people are really talking about. You are absolutely right that without pragmatics we’d never be able to accomplish what we’re trying to with NLP technology."

Question 8 (Really? Context and pragmatics are that important?) and MModal.com's answer will be published very soon.

Follow @EHRworkflow to be sure not to miss it.

Feel free to read the previous questions I asked of the new MModal.com website.

 

 

 

 

MModal.com on Language & Workflow 6: Do You Use Workflow Engines?

6. About that sub-cloud labeled "Workflow Orchestration"… Are we talking "workflow orchestration" in the same sense it is used in the workflow automation and business process management community?

From Wikipedia:

Workflow engines may also be referred to as a Workflow Orchestration Engines.

"The workflow engines mainly have three functions:

  • Verification of the current status: Check whether the command is valid in executing a task.
  • Determine the authority of users: Check if the current user is permitted to execute the task.
  • Executing condition script: After passing the previous two steps, workflow engine begins to evaluate condition script in which two processes are carried out, if the condition is true, workflow engine execute the task, and if execution successfully complete, it returns the success, if not, it reports the error to trigger and roll back the change.

Workflow engine is the core technique for task allocation software application, such as BPM in which workflow engine allocates task to different executors with communicating data among participants. A workflow engine can execute any arbitrary sequence of steps. For example, a workflow engine can be used to execute a sequence of steps which compose a healthcare data analysis."

Do you use a workflow engine? Could you describe what we discussed earlier in terms of this engine?

"We do use a workflow engine in various of our solutions. In the case of clinical documentation services, it is used to orchestrate the processing, proofreading and distribution of millions of clinical documents per year, involving tens of thousands of users. In the case of coding and clinical documentation improvement workflows, it is used to orchestrate intricate workflows involving a combination of technology and humans, with lots of different users with different roles."

That's fantastic! I think healthcare needs more true workflow technology, such as what you describe. I increasingly frequently prepend "Workflow engine sighting" to links I tweet from @EHRworkflow.

Question 7 (How important is context and pragmatics?) and MModal.com's answer will be published very soon.

Follow @EHRworkflow to be sure not to miss it.

Feel free to read the previous questions I asked of the new MModal.com website.

MModal.com on Language & Workflow 5: What's Your Language Workflow Like?

5. It would be great it we could actually track a hypothetical phrase, from beginning to end, what NLP engineers call a "linguistic pipeline."

 

"While we could provide an example of that, it would look fairly generic and like any other NLP pipeline you may have seen before. The core differentiator of M*Modal’s speech understanding technology is that we don’t run a sequential pipeline, but that we have feedback loops and non-linear interactions between the individual stages of speech recognition, NLP, etc."

"[F]eedback loops and non-linear interactions", yes I've read about this. Speech and language understanding is a complex mixture of data-driven, bottom-up processing and context-driven, top-down processing. (Just think if how many times you don't actually "hear" what's said, but know it nonetheless purely from context.) Question 6 (Do you use workflow engines?) and MModal.com's answer will be published very soon.

Follow @EHRworkflow to be sure not to miss it.

Feel free to read the previous questions I asked of the new MModal.com website.

 

 

 

 

 

MModal.com on Language & Workflow 2: Language and Workflow Connection

2. From your unique perspective, what is the connection between language tech and workflow tech?

"This is an absolute dead-on question, I’m so happy you asked it. The important connection is if we would just do speech-to-text transcription we wouldn’t affect anything. We’d just be creating a piece of text, without being able to drive actions. Ultimately we want to drive that action in the workflow – for example, have a physician create that order for a new medication. We want to make sure follow up happens and facilitate the workflow that enables that process from beginning to end. Also, healthcare is all about collaboration among providers. There is a lot of patient handoff and effective coordination of care doesn’t happen nearly as much as it should, and it only happens if proper workflow processes are in place. If we’re not trying to get involved in that process and drive more effective workflow processes, we’re not being successful in affecting change."

Question 1 (What's the connection between efficiency and user experience?) and MModal.com's answer will be published very soon.

Follow @EHRworkflow to be sure not to miss it.

 

 

 

 

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