IBM has invested in US-based eHealth developer Modernizing Medicine as part of their $100 million strategy of accelerating the adoption of Watson cognitive computing in healthcare.

Modernizing Medicine specialises in cloud-based, specialty-specific electronic medical record (EMR) systems, called Electronic Medical Assistant® (EMA™),and other technologies that capture structured data, track outcomes and deliver clinical decision support. According to Modernizing Medicines, over 5,000 healthcare providers in the US currently use the platform.

IBM’s funding will help Modernizing Medicine further develop its suite of solutions, including its mobile app, schEMA, which is accessed through EMA and leverages the cognitive computing power of Watson to give physicians rapid clinical decision support at the point of care. Currently only available for dermatology, schEMA allows dermatologists to ask questions in natural language about possible symptoms and treatments, and within seconds receive a response based on relevant information contained in thousands of medical journals, research studies and other documents.

“Modernizing Medicine is a great example of the breakthrough innovation we have seen from our partners who are building a new class of cognitive computing solutions powered by Watson,” said Vice President of IBM Watson, Stephen Gold. “IBM’s investment will help speed the introduction of their schEMA app and demonstrates how Watson can be used by medical professionals to improve how they practice evidence-based medicine.”

On IBM’s investment, Co-founder and CEO of Modernizing Medicine, Daniel Cane, said: “It’s an exciting milestone in our journey to deliver specialty-specific solutions to healthcare providers, including an entirely new class of cognitive-infused patient care apps powered by Watson.”

“After being selected to join the Watson Ecosystem last year, we’re honoured that IBM and our other investors are committed to our vision for schEMA and its ability to help physicians transform dermatology and other specialties,” continued Cane.

IBM has partnered with a number of organisations in the medical community, including leading hospitals and research organisations such as Cleveland Clinic and Mayo Clinic, to advance Watson’s healthcare capabilities. To encourage greater innovation, IBM is pursuing direct investments in organisations such as Modernizing Medicine that are developing new cognitive apps and systems powered by Watson.

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