Digital twins land on your doorstep

Patient value, intelligent systems, empowered workforces, and digital twins are starting to drag energy from the early adopters in life sciences.

Patient value is being pushed for healthcare outcomes and better patient experiences. Intelligent systems leverage context, real-time and secure patient data moving from systems of records to systems of insights and engagement. The empowered workforce is using digital experiences to drive culture and employee and patient behavior changes.

The most interesting is the digital twins. A digital twin is a concept first coined by Dr. Michael Grieves in 2002. Interestingly enough, NASA first used the concept in space exploration. It’s the first concept to connect the physical and digital worlds.
A digital twin is the generation of digital data to represent a physical object. It sounds very 2030; it’s not. Allow me to explain; the concept, while not named, has been around for a while.

  • Construction: used to model bridge structures and conduct force modeling
  • Energy: leverages this technology to simulate wind conditions for wind turbines
  • Offshore rigging: combines models with wave energy to model wave energy harvester system platforms to model motion of floats
  • Manufacturing: has been applying automotive car simulations and transforming them from models into real cars for what seems like forever

It’s only recently that healthcare can finally get on the wagon and start to apply this technology.

  1. Representing the action of a therapy
  2. Modeling longitudinal biomarkers
  3. Patient-specific behavior predictions
  4. Simulation of optimization drug-dosing regimens
  5. Replacement of bench and animal tests
  6. Optimize product drug design, manufacturing, and even packaging
  7. Population-specific predictions of cardiotoxicity for arrhythmias, anticoagulant, and heart failure medications
  8. Novel drug delivery mechanisms for biologics
  9. Medical device designs, e.g., minimally invasive heart valves
  10. Precision electrical neuro-stimulation therapies

The challenge is that biotechnology companies are often limited to only a simple 1D model’s cellular level. This can make translating these principles into a human body difficult.

Combining digital twins and prediction models has high-potential implications for patients. Predicting the outcome of prescription drugs by applying machine learning to model lifestyle choices makes patient decisions for medication adherence and choosing a healthy lifestyle very obvious. It’s not just the technologies that are ready for this innovation; patients are ready too. Let’s move away from this one-size-fits-all dosing approach and pivot into a new paradigm of stratifying patients into groups with similar genetic, environmental, and physiological factors. Using digital twins, we can get there.

The U.S. stimulus package, under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (the HITECH Act), has earmarked US$1.2 billion for the development of healthcare technology across the U.S.
Maybe digital twins should only live within the manufacturing world? Or perhaps there are just a few of us believers that believe innovation can spans industries.

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Peter is a technology executive with over 20 years of experience, dedicated to driving innovation, digital transformation, leadership, and data in business. He helps organizations connect strategy to execution to maximize company performance. He has been recognized for Digital Innovation by CIO 100, MIT Sloan, Computerworld, and the Project Management Institute. As Managing Director at OROCA Innovations, Peter leads the CXO advisory services practice, driving digital strategies. Peter was honored as an MIT Sloan CIO Leadership Award Finalist in 2015 and is a regular contributor to on innovation. Peter has led businesses through complex changes, including the adoption of data-first approaches for portfolio management, lean six sigma for operational excellence, departmental transformations, process improvements, maximizing team performance, designing new IT operating models, digitizing platforms, leading large-scale mission-critical technology deployments, product management, agile methodologies, and building high-performance teams. As Chief Information Officer, Peter was responsible for Connecticut’s Health Insurance Exchange’s (HIX) industry-leading digital platform transforming consumerism and retail-oriented services for the health insurance industry. Peter championed the Connecticut marketplace digital implementation with a transformational cloud-based SaaS platform and mobile application recognized as a 2014 PMI Project of the Year Award finalist, CIO 100, and awards for best digital services, API, and platform. He also received a lifetime achievement award for leadership and digital transformation, honored as a 2016 Computerworld Premier 100 IT Leader. Peter is the author of Learning Intelligence: Expand Thinking. Absorb Alternative. Unlock Possibilities (2017), which Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times No. 1 bestseller Triggers, calls "a must-read for any leader wanting to compete in the innovation-powered landscape of today." Peter also authored The Power of Blockchain for Healthcare: How Blockchain Will Ignite The Future of Healthcare (2017), the first book to explore the vast opportunities for blockchain to transform the patient experience. Peter has a B.S. in C.I.S from Bentley University and an MBA from Quinnipiac University, where he graduated Summa Cum Laude. He earned his PMP® in 2001 and is a certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt, Masters in Business Relationship Management (MBRM) and Certified Scrum Master. As a Commercial Rated Aviation Pilot and Master Scuba Diver, Peter understands first hand, how to anticipate change and lead boldly.