Stanford Creates Center to Link Faculty, Digital Health Companies | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Stanford Creates Center to Link Faculty, Digital Health Companies

January 18, 2017
by David Raths
| Reprints
Center for Digital Health to promote partnerships, perform clinical research, provide educational resources
Click To View Gallery

The Stanford University School of Medicine has launched a center to support collaborations between Stanford faculty and Silicon Valley technology companies focusing on digital health tools.

The Center for Digital Health aims to advance the field of digital health by promoting these partnerships, performing clinical research and educating the next generation of physicians and digital healthcare leaders.

“Digital health is a space where Stanford should be leading the way,” said Sumbul Desai, M.D., clinical associate professor of medicine and executive director of the center, in a prepared statement. “The new center will be focused on leveraging our resources and encouraging collaborations that will lead to better health care through digital technology.”

The center grew out of a need to provide support and guidance to faculty who were repeatedly being contacted by both startups and established technology companies with offers to collaborate, Desai said.  “We can help connect interested faculty with industry, or vice versa. Say, for example, there’s a faculty member interested in pulmonary digital health research. We may know a company with the same interest. We can help connect them.”

Mintu Turakhia, M.D., assistant professor of cardiovascular medicine and senior director of research and innovation at the center noted that  there are hundreds of digital health startups, and it is very difficult for patients, doctors, hospitals, insurers, regulators and investors to know which solutions will work and which will stick. He said high-quality evidence is needed to make informed decisions.

Turakhia leads efforts to advance research in digital health at Stanford that ranges from technology assessments and implementation studies to multicenter trials. He is the principal investigator for five digital health trials. The largest of these is a 25-site, 400-patient randomized trial to test digital interventions combined with health coaches to determine whether they improve medication adherence for people with atrial fibrillation, which affects 4 million U.S. adults.

The center will provide training to physicians in digital health medicine at Stanford through fellowships, internship opportunities, conferences and traditional classroom material, Desai said. In addition, the center will offer educational programs to industry members.

The center is also accepting proposals for healthcare research projects focused on innovative uses for Apple Watches. In addition to providing up to 1,000 of the watches, the center will award $10,000 to the winning project for one year, starting in April.

Get the latest information on Health IT and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More



Geisinger, AstraZeneca Partner on Asthma App Suite

Geisinger has partnered with pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca to create a suite of products that integrate into the electronic health record and engage asthma patients and their providers in co-managing the disease.

Analysis: Healthcare Ransomware Attacks Decline in First Half of 2018

In the first half of 2018, ransomware events in major healthcare data breaches diminished substantially compared to the same time period last year, as cyber attackers move on to more profitable activities, such as cryptojacking, according to a new report form cybersecurity firm Cryptonite.

Dignity Health, UCSF Health Partner to Improve the Digital Patient Experience

Dignity Health and UCSF Health are collaborating to develop a digital engagement platform that officials believe will provide information and access to patients when and where they need it as they navigate primary and preventive care, as well as more acute or specialty care.

Report: Digital Health VC Funding Surges to Record $4.9 Billion in 2018

Global venture capital funding for digital health companies in the first half of 2018 was 22 percent higher year-over-year (YoY) with a record $4.9 billion raised in 383 deals compared to the $4 billion in 359 deals in the same time period last year, according to Mercom Capital Group’s latest report.

ONC Roundup: Senior Leadership Changes Spark Questions

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) has continued to experience changes within its upper leadership, leading some folks to again ponder what the health IT agency’s role will be moving forward.

Media Report: Walmart Hires Former Humana Executive to Run Health Unit

Reigniting speculation that Walmart and insurer Humana are exploring ways to forge a closer partnership, Walmart Inc. has hired a Humana veteran to run its health care business, according to a report from Bloomberg.