Our Assistant Director of Health Insights and Portfolio Planning - Dr Goh Han Leong
The fourth Industrial Revolution is set to shake up industries, and a major catalyst is Artificial Intelligence (AI).
In particular, the potential of AI for the healthcare industry is limitless. Optimising healthcare processes; enabling more accurate analysis of healthcare data; and predicting diagnoses. With the many developments in the AI scene, the Health Insights team at Integrated Health Information Systems (IHiS) is all ready to harness the power of AI to improve healthcare in Singapore.
One such project that IHiS, the technology agency for Singapore healthcare, has successfully implemented is the Multiple Readmissions Prevention Predictive Model. The model, which is currently available at all public healthcare institutions, leverages machine learning algorithms and statistical analysis to identify patients who are at risk of multiple readmissions in a 12-month period.
Spearheading the project is Assistant Director of IHiS' Health Insights team, Dr Goh Han Leong.
"This predictive model lays the foundation for future development of analytics-related decision support tools, such as the assessment tool, which can potentially help in the right-siting of acute care patients who are admitted into public hospitals. When coupled with suitable intervention programmes, the model contributes to the reduction in Emergency Department (ED) and in-patient admission rates, as well as the average length of stay in a hospital," shares Han Leong.
Han Leong is no stranger to data analytics, with his background in Information Technology and Telecommunications Analytics, mainly in the public sector. His interest in data analytics stemmed from his graduate days in the National University of Singapore (NUS) when he developed a software to remotely access your computer. Recalling that memory, Han Leong said "Through that project, I realised that it was very rewarding to leverage computing and data to develop an industrial solution and materialise it."
Ever since then, he has not looked back. His 9 years of experience working with location-based data has seen remarkable achievements. Back in 2012, he won the PS21 ExCEL (Excellence through Continuous Enterprise and Learning) Award for implementing a data sharing engine for transport data.
Today, he continues crunching data. This time, to find solutions and interventions which are able to solve complex healthcare issues to benefit the population.
"Healthcare data comes in many different forms, ranging from numbers and text to images. I enjoy the constant challenge of being able to translate the myriad of data into something that can benefit Singaporeans. Working at IHiS is also meaningful and enriching, because of the wide range of opportunities for me to apply my data science know-how and to work alongside top brains in the industry," said Han Leong.
So how does the loving father of four spend his free time? He enjoys spending time with his children and keeping abreast with the latest technology. For all card game enthusiasts, Han Leong is also always game for a round of Bridge and Texas Hold'em!
Our Chief HR Officer - May Wee
Life in IHiS is vibrant, fun – employees not only get to do meaningful work, work with the latest technology or exciting gadgets, but also engage in fun activities as well. We have many organisation-wide events that help to build bonds and rapport for with all members of our IHiS family. These range from monthly birthday celebrations to wellness talks. In addition, our very active Recreation Club organises many regular informal and social events like annual Dinner & Dance, Family Day, Sports activities i.e. cycling, running, bowling, football and CSR activities, e.g. volunteer visits to Assisi Hospice.
Fostering a culture of innovation here is also important to us. We create opportunities for staff to contribute ideas and creative solutions that would make a difference in the healthcare landscape. And there is nothing better seeing our family members or friends benefitting from the innovative solutions we develop or manage. This in itself is a rewarding experience. We embrace diversity, but work as One-IHiS team always. Most importantly, we all share a common vision to make a difference in public healthcare and be the trusted technology partner to serve our clusters and institutions with passion and commitment. Together, we can achieve significant synergies and deliver transformational solutions for the betterment of healthcare.
Employees are the lifeline of an organisation and in IHiS, we believe in developing our employees and creating fulfilling work experiences for employees. At IHiS, we promote continuous learning and provide opportunities for growth and development through the different job roles available. We adopt the National Infocomm Competency Framework (NICF) to ensure a focused and systematic competency and learning roadmap for our employees.
We also have two tracks of career path, i.e. technical track (for individual technical experts), as well as management track (with people management responsibilities). Taking ownership of one's career and forward planning is strongly encouraged for individuals to learn, grow and develop, achieving both business and personal goals.
Our Applications Group Director – Edwin Chew
IHiS is one of the most highly skilled groups of healthcare-IT talents in the Asia Pacific region. We are the IT architect, developer, integrator and implementer. We also maintain the systems, manage the data centres for the public healthcare clusters. In short, we are truly an IT company that provides many diverse IT opportunities and exposure for large projects, including those on a national scale.
The work done by IHiS creates a positive impact on our patients. Our ability to link the data points and translate them into meaningful insights has helped healthcare professionals to better serve the patients. Healthcare IT saves lives. For example, our signature closed-loop medication management system ensures accuracy and safety in serving the right drugs to the right patient, at the right time. We also introduced a smart software that alerts the doctors for any drug allergies, etc. This certainly helps to improve patient safety.
In 2014, there were about 11.1% of the residents aged 65 and above. This group of residents is projected to increase to 20% in 2030. Separately, the Singapore Government is increasing the healthcare expenditure from $8 billion in FY2015 to $20 billion in FY2020. With this spending, we will be adding more than 20 new medical facilities from now till 2020. Our ageing population, or sliver tsunami as it is commonly termed, and the increase in the healthcare spending increases IT demands. In short, healthcare IT is a sunrise industry and IHiS will continue to design and develop innovation solutions that will revolutionise the healthcare industry in Singapore and truly make a difference.
Our SingHealth GCIO - Benedict Tan
IT is a quintessential enabler for most, if not all, transformation. There are many examples in our daily life: Automated Teller Machines, Internet Booking of Movie Tickets, Internet Banking, Government eServices, etc. In healthcare, SingHealth has introduced mobile applications and online appointment systems for patients, online bill payments, self-registration and self-payment kiosks, Outpatient and Inpatient Pharmacy Automation Systems where we employ robotics to pick and pack medication, mobile applications for patient self-management for knee, eye, diabetes, etc., and many more.
The success of these transformation projects hinges on the close collaboration between business and IT colleagues. Radical transformation usually takes place with process review and redesign; these projects are usually the ones that see the most gain in effectiveness and efficiency. In SingHealth, business and IT colleagues start working closely together from the early process review and redesign stage all the way through to implementation. Besides deep IT knowledge, our IT colleagues are also familiar with the business goals and processes. They are constantly on the lookout for innovative solutions to support the business transformation.
There is now an urgent focus on transforming Healthcare in Singapore due to pressures such as increase in the number of chronic disease patients, silver tsunami and a steady reduction in the workforce. We have to do more with less, i.e. treat the increased patient population with less manpower. This can only be successfully done with transformation, and introduction of IT, automation and robotics. This focus nicely converges with the Singapore Government's initiative on building a Smart Nation.
With IT, we can bring the benefits to millions of citizens. We have plans to introduce more patient self-service solutions (e.g. kiosks, mobile and internet), patient self-monitoring and self-management solutions (e.g. telemonitoring, tele-rehab, etc), increased solutions that leverage robotics (e.g. automated guided vehicles (AGVs)).
Analytics is another interesting area. With more and accurate insights, we can develop better treatment and care, as well as increase patient services. We are working with business colleagues and external parties to build our advance analytics capabilities to support our research and clinical endeavours.
SingHealth's vision is "Defining Tomorrow's Medicine" with our mission "Care to Heal, Innovate to Advance, Educate to Empower". It is the largest Academic Medical Centre in Singapore. As a cluster, SingHealth handles about 45% of the public outpatient and inpatient load.
On the horizon, we have many new facilities including Sengkang General Hospital, Sengkang Community Hospital, Sengkang Family Medicine Clinic, Outram Community Hospital, SGH DEM extension, new National Cancer Centre Singapore, Bedok Polyclinic, Sengkang Polyclinic and Punggol Polyclinic.
SingHealth operates on a hub-and-spoke model. For example, we have oncology clinics in CGH and KTPH; we have ophthalmology clinics at CGH, KTPH, Balestier Medical Centre and Gleneagles Hospital. By operating on this model, we have extended our medical services to the patients.
SingHealth will also be introducing more disease based centres. Starting with Diabetes and Metabolism Centre, this will be a one-stop shop for patients to access to related specialty care. In the past, they would have to visit these specialties (e.g. renal, ophthalmology, diabetes) at different facilities separately. Next in line will be the Breast Centre, Lung Centre and Head and Neck Centre.
For an IHiS staff, life at the cluster is where the rubber meets the road. This is where the IT solutions are used on a daily basis to treat and service patients, and operate the healthcare facilities. I would say that a Health IT staff training and exposure will not be complete without the experience working at a cluster.
At the cluster, we operate seamlessly with all the other departments. We are involved in all activities including strategic planning, work plan and budgeting and day-to-day operations. There are many "non-IT" but IT-related activities that we must be involved such as JCI and BCM accreditation, emergency planning and exercise, and PDPA.