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    Andy Stonehouse, MA
    The clinical necessity of transcribing accurate notes after every patient visit remains critical. But doing the work and then disseminating that documentation has become a time-consuming process, significantly cutting into the ability to see and serve more patients. It’s also become an administrative burden for clinicians, leading to stress and even burnout.

    Jared Pelo, MD, FACEP, is chief clinical product officer at Nuance, where he leads the ambient clinical intelligence team. As he explains, ambient clinical intelligence uses advanced technology to electronically record doctor-patient conversations and then leverages artificial intelligence to build out the resulting documentation. 

    Pelo, a speaker at MGMA’s 2021 Medical Practice Excellence: Leaders Conference, said this new transcription tool is a great example of how technology intersects with healthcare to provide useful, time-saving solutions.

    “There are so many problems to solve in medicine,” he said on an episode of the MGMA Insights podcast. “If you can kind of narrow it down and say, ‘I’m going to solve this one problem, but I think this one problem solves a lot of other problems,’ it is the breakdown of the doctor-patient relationship. 

    “Doctors felt a calling to go into medicine, and they want to feel joy in their job. But we know 50% experience burnout, and we know that when they’re experiencing burnout, they’re twice as likely to make a medical error over the next six months. And we know that patients want to feel connected and well taken care of by their doctors, but they feel like there’s a computer stuck in between the doctor and the patient.”

    Hear more from Pelo in this episode of the MGMA Insights podcast: 

    Pelo said the ever-increasing amount of paperwork required by HIPAA has made the situation even more of a drag on physician resources. 

    “This journey began for me when I was a medical director in a rural hospital in Virginia,” he said. “I saw my doctors stuck on their computers and started thinking I’ve got to help solve this problem. That had been a problem for a long time, especially since the HITECH Act and the ACA, and everyone moved to EHRs.”

    After experimenting with a series of startup companies, Pelo joined his colleagues at Nuance, which last year launched Dragon Ambient eXperience (DAX), a voice-to-text A.I. product designed to transcribe doctor-patient conversations effortlessly and efficiently – without all the manual busywork of transcribing notes.

    Pelo’s work not only helps bolster doctor-patient relationships, but it removes a great deal of clinical burden as well. 

    “One thing that makes Nuance kind of unique in the technology landscape is the focus on clinical knowledge,” he said. “Nuance has prided itself on having a bunch of physicians that can bring clinical knowledge to bear on clinical workflows – how’s this best going to work with billing and coding or with other compliance issues. [It’s] making sure that you never lose track that it needs to be clinically relevant, helpful and useful in the clinical space, not just because it’s great technology, but because it actually knows healthcare.”

    Additional resources:


    Written By

    Andy Stonehouse, MA

    Andy Stonehouse, MA, is a Colorado-based freelance writer and educator. His professional credits include serving as editor of Employee Benefit News and a variety of financial and insurance publications, in addition to work in the recreation and transportation fields.  

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