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A Center for Cross-Industry Open Collaboration in Healthcare Research and Innovation

Paul Bleicher (Optum Labs), Mark Hayward (Mayo Clinic)
Salon G-F
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Solving the most difficult problems in healthcare research and innovation requires access to a database of integrated, longitudinal administrative claims, electronic health records, and other socioeconomic and behavioral data. Previously, this unique data resource wasn’t available either commercially or non-commercially. Optum Labs is an open innovation center for the healthcare and life sciences industry, recently established to create a neutral setting for collaboration on research and innovation focused on improving patient care and lowering the costs of care. Optum and it’s founding partner, Mayo Clinic are making their information assets (109M lives of claims data, 35M lives of EHR data), technologies, knowledge tools and scientific expertise available to organizations interested in pursuing practical new solutions to patient care challenges, accelerating the pace of innovation and improving health care outcomes for patients. Optum and Mayo will be joined by other partners from all sides of the healthcare ecosystem including payers, pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, provider and academic organizations, professional societies and patient advocacy groups, all of whom will contribute unique data and/or expertise, and will help to lead and guide Optum Labs direction and participate in the open research and innovation at Optum Labs. Together, the goal is to create a unique, unparalleled environment with the data, tools, and infrastructure necessary for leading experts and scientists to tackle the thorniest problems in healthcare outcomes and comparative effectiveness research, and for innovators to bring the findings from this research into the clinic as novel tools and processes.

Photo of Paul Bleicher

Paul Bleicher

Optum Labs

Paul Bleicher, MD PhD is the Chief Executive Officer of Optum Labs, an open, collaborative health care innovation center established by Mayo Clinic and Optum to attract research and development partnerships between various stakeholder groups in healthcare and accelerate the “speed of innovation” in the pursuit of improved patient health. Prior to his current role, he was Chief Medical Officer for Humedica, a next-generation clinical informatics company that provides novel business intelligence solutions to the health care and life science industry. At Humedica, which was acquired by Optum in January 2013, he was involved in all aspects of medical informatics, data analytics privacy and regulatory compliance, and product development. Prior to this, he was the founder and original CEO of Phase Forward where he helped grow the organization over an 11 year period from a concept to a publicly traded company serving in various capacities as Chief Strategy Officer and as a member of the Board of Directors until its 2010 acquisition by Oracle Corporation. Prior to founding Phase Forward, Dr. Bleicher served as Vice President of Clinical Affairs at Alpha-Beta Technology with responsibility for Phase I through III clinical development of a novel carbohydrate drug. Dr. Bleicher was previously the Director, Early Phase Services at PAREXEL International where he assisted pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies with the initial development of novel therapies.

Dr. Bleicher currently serves on the editorial boards of Applied Clinical Trials, the Drug Information Journal, and Research Practitioner. He has held various leadership positions in the Drug Information Association, including Chairman of the Steering Committee of North America for the Drug Information Association, a member of their Board of Directors and a member of the Board of the DIA Foundation. He served as a member of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Leadership Council.

In 2002, Dr. Bleicher won the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in New England and was appointed to the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur’s Hall of Fame. He was in the first group of PharmaVoice’s 100 Most Inspiring Leaders in Life Sciences, and was named a Champion in Healthcare by the Boston Business Journal. He was named the 2003 recipient of the Rensselaer Alumni Association Fellows Award, and the 2011 Alumni Key Award.

Dr. Bleicher received his BS from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and his MD and PhD from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, specializing in cellular immunology. He trained in internal medicine at the Beth Israel Hospital, and dermatology at Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital. He did a post-doctoral fellowship at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in molecular biology, and began his career as a physician/investigator and Assistant Professor at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Photo of Mark  Hayward

Mark Hayward

Mayo Clinic

Mark J. Hayward is the administrator for the Center for the Science of Health Care Delivery at Mayo Clinic. He also serves as vice chair for the Department of Facilities and Support Services: Engineering, Media, and Systems Coordination.

He received the B.A. degree in mathematics from St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn. and the M.S. degree in industrial engineering — health systems, from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.

Mr. Hayward began his career at Mayo as a systems analyst and subsequently became assistant section head of Hospital Systems and Procedures, section head of Clinic Systems and Procedures and Mayo Integrated Clinical Systems, and served as the associate administrator for Clinic Operations.

With his interest in operations research and systems design/engineering, Mark has been able to apply these disciplines throughout his career at Mayo Clinic in a wide range of health care settings. He provided input to the 2005 Institute of Medicine report on the need for an increased use of industrial engineering methods and approaches to improve the quality, reliability and efficiency of health care delivery. Mark was course director for five years for the Mayo Clinic conference on the application of operations research and systems engineering methods in health care. As he works in this rapidly expanding discipline in health care Mark is excited to be a part of efforts which have significant benefits to patients and providers.

Mark has received the Mayo Clinic Individual Award for Excellence, the Mayo Clinic Excellence in Leadership Award and the Mayo Clinic Distinguished Administrators Award.

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