How Microsoft Supports Michigan Medicine’s Modernisation

Microsoft has been Assisting Michigan Medicine with its Ongoing Modernisation, Using the Cloud to Improve Operational Efficiencies and Clinical Outcomes

Microsoft is an organisation that needs little introduction in the context of technology, business and society as a whole. 

These days, the company’s mission is laser-focused on empowering every person and every organisation on the planet to achieve more.

But of course, it’s impossible to achieve more without good health, which is why empowering healthcare has become a central aspect of Microsoft’s strategy. 

“We believe in the healthcare industry and it’s an exciting time to be working in healthcare,” says Tyler Bryson, CVP, US Health & Public Sector Industries at Microsoft.

“We're working with leading medical institutions around the world to advance research and practise, and to use data, intelligence and collaboration tools to help improve lives.”

Cloud migration unlocks new capabilities

Microsoft has a long-established partnership with Michigan Medicine, which looks after one of the largest healthcare complexes in the state, as well as education and research facilities. 

Bryson reveals their relationship began somewhat organically, with the pair coming together as it became clear new technologies, capabilities and innovations were needed to propel healthcare forward. 

More recently, this has involved Microsoft migrating Michigan Medicine’s electronic health records to the cloud, ensuring the latter is ideally positioned to take care of its patients. 

Complicating this process, however, is the sheer complexity of Michigan Medicine’s integrated system, which has been in place for several decades. 

In a bid to assist its partner in leveraging the full capabilities of the cloud, Microsoft has built redundancy and resiliency into the existing Epic environment by delivering a cloud read-only environment, helping to protect Michigan Medicine from cybersecurity incidents and ransomware.

“Over time, this will move from being a redundant solution to being the core move to the cloud, and that's a journey many healthcare companies are on,” explains Bryson. 

“One of the critical things to consider is that we’re not just moving something to a new data center. Migration for migration's sake isn't worth it; it’s a step towards being able to do so much more. 

“What's really exciting is the way this will enable new capabilities that only the cloud can provide, mostly in the field of data, analytics and AI, which are key to unlocking improved efficiencies and outcomes in healthcare.”

Harnessing the power of AI

As Bryson alludes to, AI and advanced analytics have played heavily into this migration process. 

For many years, healthcare providers have been leveraging big data systems in an attempt to understand and find patterns in their data to improve operational efficiencies and clinical outcomes. 

Without the cloud, though, this crucial data has been dispersed across numerous silos, making it far more difficult for healthcare professionals to connect the dots. 

What Bryson and Microsoft are working on now is the next phase, where the cloud and emerging technologies like generative AI help to combine sources of data and find causality. 

“These data sets are so massive that they require new forms of intelligence to be able to understand them and find patterns – and that's where AI comes in,” adds Bryson. 

“These technologies will allow us to go way beyond what we've done in the past and even think beyond correlations into the world of generative data, helping us understand how to improve the patient experience.”

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