Interview: New network-as-a-service platform for healthcare Special

Posted Jan 14, 2018 by Tim Sandle
The company Akiri recently launched a network-as-a-service platform to the entire healthcare industry, called the Akiri Switch, a subscription-based data network. Digital Journal speaks to Akiri CEO, Adriaan Ligtenberg.
A worker of an empty pharmacy is pictured in Caracas on May 30  2016
A worker of an empty pharmacy is pictured in Caracas on May 30, 2016
Ronaldo Schemidt, AFP
Akiri Switch is designed to that enable any type of health information to move seamlessly and securely throughout the U.S. healthcare system. To create a 360-degree network of trust, only subscribers to the network can share health data in the network itself. The American Medical Association is the first in the circle, on behalf of its more than 240,000 members.
To discover more, Digital Journal took the opportunity to interview Akiri CEO, Adriaan Ligtenberg.
Digital Journal: Thanks for the interview. What is your opinion about the state of U.S. healthcare?
Adriaan Ligtenberg: Today, our industry’s data arteries are sclerotic. Thirty percent of patient charts cannot be found on visits. Fifty percent of physician time is spent on data, not patient care. By some estimates, $200 billion is wasted annually because health insurance payers and healthcare providers don’t have instant access to the right information at the right time. Duplication of information and silos of data are everywhere.
DJ: What opportunities are there for startups?
Ligtenberg: One of the biggest challenges in healthcare today is securing, sharing and using trusted health data in real time. This represents an exciting opportunity for startups to leverage leading edge technologies to create lasting, meaningful contributions to the entire healthcare industry. Middle market solutions enable the use of data and access to data for patient care quality, service delivery and treatment – reducing the burden on healthcare systems.
DJ: How important is health data?
Ligtenberg: Data is critical to everything we do today, and data is the lifeblood of the healthcare industry. No single challenge is more important to improving the efficiency or effectiveness of healthcare in the United States than transporting patient health data. How do you protect it? When can you share it? Who gets to use it? These are just some of the questions we need to answer.
DJ: What types of things can be learnt from healthcare data?
Ligtenberg: Depends on the data. Is it accurate? Does it come from a trusted source? Was it shared in real-time? Are systems able to take advantage of it? If so, we can learn how to demand fewer redundant tests, produce more accurate diagnoses, design faster treatments, create better outcomes, and generate greater innovation at the system level. Seamless access to healthcare data will help improve efficiency, reduce medical mistakes, and find cures.
DJ: Please explain about the Akiri network-as-a-service optimized for healthcare, in terms of the functionality?
Ligtenberg: Akiri Switch is a software-defined network (SDN) and secure routing protocol for healthcare data. This data, which Akiri never stores, spans health and medical information. Akiri supports security, identification, authentication, compliance, analytics and applications.
DJ: What types of data will be shared?
Ligtenberg: Akiri Switch supports digital information from any source related to a healthcare application. This may include test results, clinical trials, prescriptions or thousands of other sources.
DJ: How did you address security issues?
Ligtenberg: Akiri Switch acts as an on demand private networking service. It enables secure and compliant transport of health data, operating as a subscription network. Akiri Switch verifies the sources and destinations of data in real time and logs the history of the trust of the data movement. Akiri does the same for healthcare data among subscribers. Akiri Switch never stores or copies the data flowing across the network.
DJ: What has the reception from the medical profession been?
Ligtenberg: The medical community has been highly supportive of Akiri. The American Medical Association is the first in the circle, on behalf of its more than 240,000 members. Additionally, Celgene, the global pharmaceutical company, is also collaborating with Akiri.
DJ: What other projects are you working on?
Ligtenberg: We expect to deploy with beta clients in 2018, initially focusing on enterprise Partners working in the areas of pharma, hospitals, and IoT devices. Additionally, Akiri will offer a portfolio of products and services to help customers maximize the value of the network and protocol.