“One of the troubles that I’ve had as a clinician is just remembering to do all the things that have to be done as part of clinical care,” said Dr. Michael Docktor, gastroenterologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and co-founder of the Dock Health app. “Things like calling back families, submitting forms–you know we are getting attacked by all sides with emails and insecure texts and pages. The onslaught from all angles is really significant throughout the day and unfortunately there’s just no good way to capture those tasks.”
Docktor celebrated the launch of Dock Health at the Health2.0 conference on October 7th in Santa Clara, CA where he explained the features of the task managing application. Docktor, along with co-founder and user experience designer Keather Roemhildt, received a grant from BCH and brought the app to life after a year-long creation process. Docktor explains how he honed in on the most significant obstacle for clinicians and their teams, finding that the general consensus was hiccups with task management.
Dock Health is a native iOS application designed for iphone that is HIPAA compliant. It is designed as a shared task list that allows clinicians to invite team members, collaborate on tasks, check off when tasks are completed, notify other team members appropriately when assigned tasks are completed. Docktor explained how this app is “a safe and secure place to organize the things that you have to do for yourself, relevant to patient care and within your workplace.”
Docktor explains how the app eliminates the problem of buried and forgotten emails in inboxes. “Instead of writing an email or paging me, a team member can simply create a task and she can associate it with a par
ticular patient. And that patient demographic data will be right there in the records so that I can actually quickly and easily call that family back as opposed to having to log into the electronic health records, get the patients’ phone numbers etc.” Another feature of the application is its ability to analyze emails and create tasks from email within the Dock Health app. It takes the subject line of the email as the task name and the listed contents of the email become the tasks assigned.
Docktor is excited to bring this technology further into BCH, where it currently running pilot tests within a few departments. He describes how he is trying to address a digital divide between the productivity outlets available outside of the hospital versus within it. Because hospitals require more security in their technology, Docktor explains that at times there is a reliance on antiquated tools. He hopes to help bridge the gap between dated technology and the current age.
Docktor is looking forward to launch of their first external pilot at the University of California Irvine medical school later this month. “It’s really just the beginning for us. We are continuing to refine it as we really look forward to getting it out in the marketplace very soon.”
Leah D’Sa is a Junior studying Writing, Literature, and Publishing at Emerson College. She is currently a copyeditor for the school newspaper the Berkeley Beacon as well as Poetry Editor for the literary magazine the Emerson Review. She is looking to begin her career with health technology writing as she seeks to combine her lifelong love of writing and science.
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