Epic went with a Castaway theme for this year’s User Group Meeting, and it’s easy to see why considering Tom Hanks would need years on a deserted island to sort through all the new features and partnerships announced at the show.
Luckily for Hanks, we already rounded up all the biggest news from the event, starting with the headline grabber:
Microsoft and Epic are going all-in on AI. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella even attended in-person to lay out how the partnership will reshape clinical workflows with generative AI.
- Ambient clinical note generation powered by Nuance DAX Express
- Added in-basket messaging features that auto-generate first-draft responses
- Rev cycle enhancements that provide coding staff with suggestions based on EHR data
- New Look-Alikes program that matches patients with unidentified conditions to others with similar symptoms to help inform novel treatments
Epic CEO Judy Faulkner also took the stage in a sweet island explorer / Burning Man costume to share Epic’s overhauled partnership program, which now includes four distinct categories.
- Cornerstone Partners – tech that serves as the backbone of Epic’s own software (InterSystems, Microsoft)
- Partners – market leaders in specific areas (Nuance for ambient voice, PressGaney for consumer surveys)
- Member Services – established integrations providing complementary value
- Pals – new category that allows innovative vendors to work closely with its EHR, including Abridge for ambient voice and the just-announced addition of Talkdesk for contact center workforce management
A new app “Showroom” will be the home base for the above partners, replacing the App Orchard that Epic shut down last year.
- When Showroom officially launches in a few weeks, it’ll be exclusive to a much more curated cohort of Partners and Pals than the Orchard’s 800+ third-party vendors, a decision that Epic said will help users find the “signal in the noise” and facilitate deeper collaborations.
Under the bright lights of an island-themed stage, Epic’s new features look nothing short of transformative, and its newfound willingness to play nice with partners could make a huge impact on nearly all aspects of care delivery. The real question will be whether these enhancements can be deployed as envisioned so that they can live up to their potential. It’s a massive undertaking, but there are countless clinicians that would love if Epic could pull it off.