By Nancy Skinner RN, CCM, CMGT-RN, ACM-RN, CMCN, FCM
I recently attended a conference that was physician-focused. I always enjoy time spent at this conference because it allows me to reconnect with colleagues and learn more about the business of healthcare delivery. While those goals were met, my expectation for learning more was not enhanced within formal educational sessions but rather during numerous visits to the exhibit hall and while having valuable discussions with many exhibitors. And, this is what I learned – innovations in technology are changing the face of healthcare delivery far beyond what I ever imagined.
For years I have been saying that case management is the best-kept secret in healthcare and my discussions with the majority of exhibitors often focused not only on the products, technology and services they offered but also on explaining the importance of a professional practice of case management and the vital role of patient advocacy that we all accept. To be honest, most exhibitors had no idea that case managers need to have a full awareness of innovative technologies. If they did realize the role of the case manager, they voiced an inability to engage case managers in important discussions.
Because I do not have the ability to connect case managers to each of the innovations I discovered during my time in the exhibit hall, here are just a few of the life-changing technologies that I learned about as I spoke to exhibitors. Many were not on my radar and increased awareness of those innovations will enhance my role as a patient advocate. I should state that I am not promoting the utilization of any one of the following nor are these the only innovative technologies that sparked my interest. So hang on you might be surprised by what I learned because I was!
- A multi-cancer blood test is now available. This test can provide for the early detection of a shared cancer signal across more than 50 cancer types. Early detection may lead to a more timely diagnosis and as a cancer survivor, I realize the value of an earlier diagnosis. The test is not intended to replace other cancer screening tests.
- In-home diagnostic tests are now available for multiple disease states including but not limited to sexually transmitted infections, especially for patients in underserved rural areas.
- A blood-based, precision medicine, molecular signature response classifier (MSRC) that predicts an inadequate response to TNFi therapy in rheumatoid arthritis.
- The use of artificial intelligence technology to provide a risk stratification test for prostate cancer
- Two blood-based proteomic tests to help providers quickly and confidently decipher the risk of malignancy of a lung nodule. This is important to me as a lung cancer survivor.
As a baby case manager in the 1990s, many of the technologies I recently learned about were considered to be science fiction but today they are a reality – a reality we must understand. I sincerely hope that representatives of these and many more innovative organizations will join us at the CMSA Annual Conference in Las Vegas in June 2023 so each of us can understand the value they bring our patients. Hope to see you there.
Bio: Nancy Skinner RN, CCM, CMGT-RN, ACM-RN, CMCN, FCM, has been a case manager, Director of Case Management and an international case management educator. She was named CMSA’s National Case Manager of the Year and she has received CMSA’s Lifetime Achievement Award. She is also a member of the inaugural group of case managers designated as Case Management Fellows (FCM). She is currently developing a Facebook Group to facilitate greater networking among case management professionals.
Registration is now open for #CMSA2023 - the 2023 CMSA Annual Conference - June 27-30 at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas. Join us at THE case management event of the year! Go to https://cmsa.societyconference.com/ to learn more and register.
Nancy, you are spot-on when you say case managers need to be aware of and knowledgeable about technology innovations that can help patients achieve their goals and impact their well-being. I really see this as being a key compentecy for case managers to be effective advocates. Thanks for the great examples you provide!
Thank you Nancy for sharing this great information. This presents as an opportunity for CMSA to connect with more of these biotechnology companies so we can all learn more of the emerging technologies available for patients and caregivers as well as ourselves.