The global professional services firm ZS announced that it has entered into a strategic partnership through a supporting multimillion dollar investment in IgniteData, a U.K.-based digital health startup shaping the future of clinical research through its Archer technology.
The goal for this partnership is to improve the efficiency of clinical research through automation and use of real-world data, which will ultimately expedite pharmaceutical product and therapy innovation and improve patient outcomes. The partnership will enhance interoperability between electronic health records (EHR) and core research applications such as electronic data capture (EDC) systems to improve the efficiency of patient data collection for research institutions and sponsors within the context of clinical research. Through ZS’s worldwide presence, the partnership will give both health systems and sponsors broader access to this type of research automation on a global scale.
“ZS’s vision is to transform what tomorrow’s research ecosystem looks like,” stated Pratap Khedkar, CEO of ZS. “We are committed to driving forward innovations that accelerate this transformation and enable better health outcomes for patients. This partnership is a step in that direction. IgniteData’s Archer application is a unique solution with enormous potential to accelerate clinical, medical and scientific innovations more broadly across healthcare and life sciences.”
IgniteData’s stand-alone Archer application acts as a virtual research assistant. Archer’s cloud-based HL7® FHIR® mapping engine identifies, imports, translates and transports regulatory-grade, clinically validated patient data from EHR systems already in place at research institutions to study sponsors for their enrolled patients. The application supports innovative evidence generation efforts through turnkey integrations with many major EHR and EDC systems such as Cerner, Epic, Castor and Medidata Rave, as well as through connections with other electronic systems that provide HL7® FHIR®-based APIs.
“IgniteData has been operating at the intersection of healthcare and clinical research for some time, and it is here, now more so than ever, that we believe the greatest opportunity exists to transform clinical trial delivery. Even though more than half of the data required for a trial already exists in the patients’ electronic medical records, this data is often manually transcribed into clinical trial systems, wasting huge staff resources as a result,” said Dan Hydes, CEO and co-founder of IgniteData. “Archer presents an incredible opportunity to improve the quality of trial operations by automating data extraction, eliminating human errors, reducing trial times and easing patient burden, ultimately helping to bring life-changing drugs to patients quicker. IgniteData is delighted to be in partnership with ZS on this mission.”
As an early adopter of Archer technology, Dr. Wai Keong Wong, chief research information officer at University College London Hospitals (UCLH), said, “We remain highly focused on harnessing our investment in Epic, our EHR, and progressing our data standardization initiatives to increase efficiency, reduce errors and free up valuable time for our highly trained research staff to support patients and other research participants. It’s a true-win-win for so many.” He continued, “Innovation is key for the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Biomedical Research Centre funded research centers such as UCLH, and we believe that partnerships should catalyze other healthcare organizations to digitize faster and adopt data standards, leading to richer, more dynamic and more impact-oriented research as a result.”