Why Artificial Intelligence?

Maintaining smooth patient flow through the hospital is a significant challenge due to the need to manage numerous procedures required for each patient in an environment where constant, unexpected changes and disruptions exist. The increasing complexities in healthcare delivery now drive the need to bring advances in technology that provide assistance wherever possible.

Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is one such tool that is available to address the challenge of patient flow. A.I. is employed to deduce answers to problems where simply stepping through a predefined algorithm will not work. For example, there may be far too many possible options to evaluate in a practical amount of time as in playing a game of chess. Alternatively, it may be necessary to make compromises to find the best solution where there is no single "right" answer. Planning a robot's route through hazardous terrain is a good example of the latter. Combining the powerful reasoning of A.I. with real-time monitoring of the environment can produce very powerful systems for managing business processes.

Artificial Intelligence has been applied to many different domains involving the optimization of workflow, including real-time optimization of factory throughput. Recognizing the difficulty of maximizing the output of the oversubscribed Hubble Space Telescope, NASA spent $100M to develop an A.I. system to optimize observing time while dealing with numerous operational constraints.

NASA Spin-off for A.I. Applications in Hospitals

Based on the same technology used by NASA, Allocade has successfully harnessed the power of A.I. to solve patient flow problems that hospitals face every day. Allocade's On-Cue® Artificial Intelligence Command and Control System monitors the procedural department's complex environment for any disruptions that impact daily operation, making decisions which optimize the use of resources, maintain patient flow, and achieve business goals within seconds.

A.I. and On-Cue® Command and Control System

On-Cue considers many elements in the environment at the same time to arrive at a solution where resources are fully utilized and patient flow is streamlined. These factors and examples of each include:

  • Changes to the schedule-add-ons, cancellations, STAT orders
  • Priorities - sedated or emergency patients
  • Real time status – delays in procedures
  • Processes - specific workflow of the department
  • Preferences – minimal wait time for outpatients
  • Relationships between steps in the process, e.g. when oral contrast was given
  • Constraints - available resources, procedures tied to a specific resource
  • Special situations - down or unavailable equipment
After making adjustments to manage disruptions, On-Cue communicates the current operational status to all stakeholders, including clinicians, caregivers, patients and hospital administrators. Furthermore, all the collected data and events are time-tagged and retained in a database. Hospital administrators can review this data through On-Cue Analytics to identify areas for further improvement, allowing them to provide high quality care to the patients, and increase patient and employees' satisfaction in the most efficient and cost effective manner.


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