Microsoft Tool Based on Open AI to Integrate With Epic Systems to Relieve Burdens of Doctors

Epic and Microsoft

Microsoft’s subsidiary Nuance Communications revealed on Tuesday that its AI-driven clinical notes application will integrate with Epic Systems, aiming to alleviate physicians’ administrative burdens.

Epic Systems, a prominent healthcare software company facilitating electronic health record management for over 500,000 physicians and 306 million patients globally, has established longstanding partnerships with both Microsoft and Nuance.

The collaboration focuses on developing a system to streamline clinicians’ backend administrative tasks.

Nuance highlighted that the integration of its latest solution, Dragon Ambient eXperience Express (DAX Express), marks a significant advancement toward this objective.

DAX Express operates by swiftly generating draft clinical notes immediately after patient visits. It captures and transcribes real-time conversations between doctors and patients, leveraging AI technologies including OpenAI’s latest model, GPT-4.

“What’s magical here is that the note is generated not in an hour, but in a matter of seconds,” remarked Garrett Adams, product lead for Epic’s ambulatory division, in an interview.

“So whereas it would have taken them much longer to type it out manually, they now receive it better, faster, and with a level of convenience that wasn’t even conceivable a decade ago.”

Nuance, acquired by Microsoft for approximately $16 billion in 2021, specializes in speech recognition and transcription tools used in medical settings, customer service interactions, and voicemail processing.

Microsoft – Open AI (Photo: Getty Images)

The company introduced its DAX Express solution earlier this year, reporting that it saves clinicians about seven minutes per patient encounter.

Given the widespread challenges faced by healthcare professionals in managing administrative tasks, time savings represent a valuable asset in the industry.

A 2016 study funded by the American Medical Association revealed that for every hour spent with patients, physicians devoted an additional two hours to administrative duties, often extending into after-hours “pajama time.”

“Physicians are eager to reduce ‘pajama time’,” noted Peter Durlach, Nuance’s chief strategy officer.

Adams emphasized that Nuance’s technology enables physicians to engage more fully with patients during consultations.

“The provider can sit and really concentrate on what the patient is communicating, without being preoccupied with all the other things they need to track,” Adams explained.

“This fosters a stronger patient connection and enhances the feeling of being heard.”

Nuance upholds rigorous data agreements with its clients, ensuring patient data remains fully encrypted and compliant with HIPAA regulations.

The rollout of DAX Express for Epic will commence with a private preview for selected users this summer, with plans to expand to general availability by the first quarter of 2024, according to Durlach.

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