PerMedCoE in post-COVID health industry landscape

In 2020 the healthcare sector was undergoing a transformation process that put its focus on improving patient care and placing the patient at the centre of all processes involving technological improvement.

COVID-19 pandemic is having a disruptive effect on every corner of the healthcare industry, and service providers and suppliers are witnessing a deterioration in product demand and cash flow. Service providers are working towards digital solutions and services. In order to accelerate drug development and commercialisation and operational efficiency, data science and digital technologies across the value chain could increase significantly.

The following trends have been identified as the most promising within the healthcare sector:

  • Telemedicine: Evolution in telemedicine is one of the biggest sources of rapid change in the healthcare system. In a situation as during the pandemic, where access to providers is limited, telemedicine is increasingly proving to be transformative.
  • IoMT: This trend has given rise to improvements in everything from patient experience to profitability. Between 20 and 30 billion IoMT devices were expected to be deployed by 2020.
  • Cloud Computing: Healthcare organisations are trying to address the need to build out, run and maintain infrastructure for record-keeping needs. Here cloud computing becomes an appealing choice for digital technology in healthcare.
  • Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality: The arrival of virtual and augmented reality solutions has led to significant advances in healthcare technologies. Advances that could only be imagined a decade ago are now being implemented.
  • Data science and predictive analytics: Rich data can be derived from sources about the surrounding environment, allowing doctors to identify and address problems that are endemic to regions, families, trades and other population clusters.
  • Blockchain: Distributing transaction records through a peer-to-peer system with a shared digital ledger is a way to improve the availability and integrity of information.
  • AI: Developing AI machines – that can process information and provide decision-making data in a manner similar to what a human does has given rise to an entirely new sector of innovative health technologies.
  • Chatbots: In healthcare, the capacity to address easily diagnosed problems allows professionals to focus on matters that might require the full attention of a physician.
  • Personalised medicine: There has been significant EU investments in research on personalised medicine. During the three first three years of the H2020 programme 167 projects on personalised medicine were financed, which would be equivalent to 872 million of euros in EU funding.

One of these projects has been PerMedCoE, which promises a breakthrough in our ability to fight illness at individual level. We need to improve our capacity to predict the course of diseases and possible treatments. To deal with the challenges of developing accurate models based on vast amounts of personal medical data, we need to adapt the current modelling tools to the new pre-exascale environments.

The HPC community has provided software for organ-level simulations (CompBioMed CoE) and molecular simulations (BioExcel CoE), but cell-level simulations were still missing. PerMedCoE will provide cell-level simulation codes adapted and optimised to work in the new generation of pre-exascale systems. It will build the infrastructures to bridge the current gap between genomics/ omics data, cellular models, and medical interpretation to empower the personalised medicine community with sustainable systems easily accessible to the end-users.

Source: Atos Market Research

Author: Elena González (Atos)