Cerner and Duke Clinical Research Institute collaborate on new app for calculating cardiac risk

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Cerner has collaborated with Duke Clinical Research Institute to develop the atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) Risk Calculator app, which is designed as a tool to increase communication between a patient and their doctor about ways to live a healthier life and risk factors for heart disease and stroke. The app helps health care providers estimate 10-year and lifetime cardiovascular disease risk for patients based on information such as age, race, sex, blood pressure, cholesterol levels, smoking status and diabetes status.

Cerner and Duke Clinical Research Institute worked together to develop the software through the Cerner Open Developer Experience (code) that encourages innovators to build apps that advance the health care industry. Through Cerner’s open source code, doctors from Duke Clinical Research Institute provided clinical direction to create an app that could be embedded within Cerner’s electronic health record (EHR) for each patient. Cerner wrote, maintains and hosts the Risk Calculator under an open source license.

To facilitate shared decision-making between the person and their doctor to guide treatment decisions, the app was designed to factor in a person’s willingness to take action to improve their health and the risks and benefits of potential therapies. Pierre Elias (Columbia University, New York, USA), a former medical study at Duke University School of Medicine (Durham, USA), comments: “Guidelines from the American College of Cardiology and American Heart Association now emphasise using the 10-year calculator to identify adults for statin therapy. We wanted an app that would make it easier for clinicians to calculate risk at the point of care. Whether it is the primary care clinic or a cardiologist’s office, I cannot tell you the number of times this can get missed when there are so many other problems to manage. Making it faster and easier to get news you can use leads to better patient care.”

Kevin Shekleton, vice president and distinguished engineer at Cerner, states: “This collaboration demonstrates how the healthcare industry can come together to develop and continually improve an app that has the ability to save lives by the power of SMART on FHIR open source standards. We developed this ASCVD Risk Calculator for our client hospitals and health systems, but open source lets any health care organisation leverage the technology to help people live healthier lives.”

The ASCVD Risk Calculator app is available to providers in the SMART App Gallery and the Cerner Open Developer Experience (code) App Gallery.

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