The Disruptive Health Technology Institute at Carnegie Mellon University Uses Innovative Approach to Create Healthcare Solutions

Carnegie Mellon’s commitment to research and technology development creates affordable, accessible and effective healthcare solutions and was the force behind the creation of the Disruptive Health Technology Institute (DHTI) in 2013. DHTI drives the creation and adoption of transformational technologies in healthcare that enable right care at the right time, place and cost.

DHTI: Phase One – Creation of an Ecosystem

In 2013, the Carnegie Mellon University, Disruptive Health Technology Institute (DHTI), launched with its first partners, Highmark and Allegheny Health Network, announcing a novel exclusive 4-year initiative. This initial investment of $11 million aimed at increasing the affordability, simplicity and accessibility of health care by creating an environment where health care innovations can be clinically tested and rapidly delivered to patients.

The DHTI was created around the mission of researching and deploying new technologies to help reduce health care costs and improve outcomes for patients. This payer-provider-innovator model was novel in that health insurance companies do not usually invest in research. The hope of value-based healthcare is dependent on providers, payers, innovators, industry and government working as a team to benefit the people that depend on them for their health and wealth security. DHTI has created an innovation ecosystem where payers, providers, inventors and collaborators can share goals, data, ideas and solutions while coordinating the rapid assessment of the most exciting solutions to vexing problems in healthcare.

DHTI: Phase Two – An Agile Platform

Today, DHTI is leveraging the initial Highmark and Allegheny Health Network partnership to accelerate the identification, validation and adoption of technology that will simultaneously transform the quality, affordability, simplicity and accessibility of health care solutions. As planned, DHTI is now moving toward an all-inclusive multi-organization model where many payers, providers and industry partners can come together to share and support DHTI’s mission through technology development, scientific studies of claims data, clinical issues and desired patient outcomes. Highmark Health is also broadening its vision of academic partnership by engaging with multiple stakeholders on CMU’s campus

The DHTI is capitalizing on the collaboration between a large health plan, a large integrated hospital system, and a world-class academic institution with expertise in computer science, engineering, public policy and business processes; domains which have not been regularly tapped to yield health care solutions. In addition, there is much experience at CMU with technology transfer, access to venture capital and “start-up” entities that can facilitate rapid spread of successful innovation.

To date, DHTI payer-partners, clinicians and CMU researchers have worked to develop innovative health care delivery technologies that will shape the future. More than 150 proposals from CMU faculty have been created to address specific problems with proposed solutions expected to: impact a large population and the ability to provide substantial health care savings, as well as likely success in improving patient safety and quality of life. 38 projects have been funded by DHTI. These projects have engaged 61 Principal Investigators, 42 clinicians and numerous payer data analysts, actuaries and leadership to advance diverse solutions with the potential to enhance well-ness, ensure patient safety, prevent infection and disease and improve the diagnosis, management and curing of illnesses.

As part of Phase Two, Highmark Health will continue to invest in academic research and DHTI will continue to act as an enabler and technology development pipeline for CMU/DHTI investigators that are interested in relationships with Highmark Health moving forward. Under the phase two process, DHTI will continue vetting healthcare innovation campus-wide and will help investigators with introductions to a newly formed Highmark Health Joint Project Committee. Additionally, DHTI will act as a matchmaker for new payer, provider and healthcare-focused organizations that are interested in utilizing the DHTI platform to develop partnerships at CMU.

Contact Us

  Phone: 412-268-6920
  Email: Lynn M. Banaszak