This being my first post to this blog, let me start off by introducing myself.
My name is Ali Emami and I’m a Technical Lead on the Microsoft HealthVault team. I joined the team about five years ago, when HealthVault was still a concept, and I’ve been writing features for it ever since. I’ve had a hand in building our connectivity interfaces, security and access controls, medical imaging, queuing infrastructure and event notifications to name a few of my focus areas. Most recently, I’ve been leading our integration of the Direct Project protocols as part of a nation-wide effort to, among other things, replace the fax machine within the healthcare industry.
Moving forward, my focus will be on an area of HealthVault which I’m really passionate about and is central to our mission, the HealthVault application platform. Since you’re reading this blog, you may already be quite familiar with the HealthVault app platform. On the other hand, you may have heard that HealthVault is open and extensible but aren’t really sure what that means practically or how that’s beneficial to you as a developer or healthcare organization. Or perhaps, you aren’t aware that HealthVault is a whole lot more than http://www.healthvault.com. Allow me to take a step back and explain.
With HealthVault our philosophy is to help improve people’s lives by enabling them to better manage their health. We know we can accomplish this by getting data into patients’ hands and giving them the tools to manage and make sense of this data. This leads to more efficient management of health, safer families, and healthier people. We also know we can’t accomplish our goals alone. We count on industry partners and software developers to help us meet the breadth of real user needs by bringing their energy, creativity, and expertise to work on large industry challenges as well as fun personal health solutions. Hence, tied at the hip to our philosophy of improving people’s lives, is our dedication to a thriving eco-system of apps, devices, partners and communities. HealthVault then, is a platform where innovation in the healthcare space is enabled. Our part of the equation is to provide powerful tools and the place to enable this innovation. This is the HealthVault application platform.
You may be wondering, why write apps for HealthVault? There are plenty of reasons, and I’ve captured some of the broad benefits that resonate with me below. Note, I’ve also included how these areas benefit HealthVault users.
Privacy, Security, and Compliance
Flexible and Interoperable Data Type System
By no means is the above an exhaustive list. There’s so much more to cover! You can refer to the HealthVault MSDN site and the HealthVault SDK for the full details of our development platform. To me it’s crystal clear that if you’re looking to build applications in the health domain that benefit users, HealthVault is the place to do it.
You’ll hear a lot more about the value you can get from HealthVault as a developer or health industry partner by following this blog. My goal is to help educate you on existing HealthVault features as well as some of our newer initiatives. I’ll be providing sample code and how-to guides on topics of interest. This could include everything from synchronizing data with HealthVault, to leveraging HealthVault within other Microsoft products like Windows Azure and Microsoft Excel for data analysis. If there are particular topics of interest to you, just send me a message.
Additionally, we’ll be combining our other HealthVault blogs (FAQ, Devices, and Data Types) into this one to provide a single place to get information to you.
I’m really excited by this new focus and I’m looking forward to our journey together to improve health around the world.