A Rockville-based information technology firm, whose co-founder is from Frederick, landed a multi-million-dollar contract to develop a national health data platform for Sweden’s 9.5 million residents.
Get Real Health announced this month it received a $4.5-million contract — an amount likely to increase — to help design a platform to consolidate the entirety of a patient’s medical records and health information into one central database for Sweden’s eHealth agency.
This would let users see everything from doctors’ notes and recommendations to the information they log into third-party health apps, like calorie counting through MyFitnessPal, according to Frederick County resident Jason Harmon, a co-founder and chief technology officer of Get Real Health.
“It performs a number of different functions. One that most citizens and most users are familiar with is a patient portal. Many times, people have to access their health care site, go and log in to see their refills and message with the doctor,” Harmon said, noting that the platform would include this feature.
The platform would also let users input data, pulling information from apps like FitBit to track things such as steps in one day or blood-sugar levels. In addition, users can interact with health care providers, giving them direct access to change medications or address any health issue, Harmon said.
“It offers them a central hub to manage their own information and that of family members who have given them access,” he said, noting information is only shared with patient consent.
Robin Wiener, a co-founder and president of Get Real Health, said she believes the platform for Sweden’s population will undergo testing in January before launching in late February or early March.
Sweden is one of the first countries worldwide to have a nationwide patient engagement platform. Wiener said Get Real Health offers similar platforms in various countries, including a Canadian province and parts of Australia and for certain hospitals in the U.S., but this is the first national project.
In addition, Wiener highlighted Sweden’s technology advances in the health industry, specifically its digital recordkeeping. The country had already “built the infrastructure ahead of time” to support such a platform, which allowed Get Real Health to design and launch the actual product, Wiener said.
“This will be the first time they can show [health data] in a meaningful way to their citizens,” she said.
This patient engagement platform for Sweden is based off Get Real Health’s products — InstantPHR and CHBase. These products were designed to be flexible and for international use, so Get Real Health has tweaked and adapted the platform to meet the needs of Sweden’s residents, according to Wiener.
InstantPHR, which stands for personal health record, is “an electronic toolbox for easily creating and configuring personal health applications,” according to Get Real Health’s website. It works in conjunction with CHBase, a data repository platform that stores personal health information.
Get Real Health is partnering with Capgemini Sverige AB, a company that provides consulting, technology and outsourcing services globally, including in Sweden, to develop and launch the platform. The contract is currently set at five years, according to Wiener.
“It’s an incredible opportunity for a small company out of Maryland,” Wiener said. “We’re really honored to be part of something that’s going to help the citizens of Sweden get healthy and stay healthy.”
Get Real Health, which was formerly called Get Real Consulting, was founded in 2001 by Harmon, Wiener and Mark Heaney, who now serves as the company’s chief strategist. The three founders met while working at a former development company and decided to start a new venture, Harmon said.
The company graduated from one of the technology incubators with the Montgomery County Business Innovation Network, and was named Maryland Incubator Company of the Year in 2010.
Harmon said the fact that Get Real Health received the multi-million-dollar contract for Sweden “shows you don’t have to be the biggest company in the world to have the biggest impact.”
Read the article in The Frederick News-Post