By Eric Althoff
NEW YORK—Connexient co-founder and CEO Mark Green believes that the future is now when it comes to helping patients and their families find their way around in a healthcare facility that might be the size of a small college campus. At the New York-based firm Connexient, Green has shepherded the implementation of MediNav, an interactive software that uses GPS technology to map the insides of hospitals and other care facilities—which can be labyrinthine at the best of times, let alone under stressful situations such as during a healthcare emergency.
“How many times have you gone to a new city or foreign country and typed your destination into Waze or Google Maps without thinking much about how difficult it used to be using Rand McNally Road Atlases?” Green said in a recent interview, adding that Connexient’s work will allow people to use their smartphone to help find their way around a 5 million-square-foot hospital with multiple levels and several buildings.
“Have you ever gotten lost in a hospital? You’re not alone,” Green said. “Getting lost can also result in missed or late appointments—a problem that costs hospitals over $150 billion annually in the United States. This true turn-by-turn blue-dot navigation provides voice prompts, off-route notification and more [that] help [people] reach their appointment.
“Our mission is to make the patient experience stress-free by providing blue dot turn-by-turn navigation. We are helping people find their way to their appointments, plus we have parking planner and meet up features that can also be integrated in the hospital’s app.”
MediNav recently came online at Pikeville Medical Center in Kentucky, and Green believes that widespread adoption of the technology won’t be far off as MediNav becomes integrated with electronic health record (EHR) software and applications.
“The tipping point that led us to MediNav was realizing that people would come to expect the same type of mapping and navigation experience indoors as they get outdoors,” Green said. “MediNav isn’t necessarily changing the world, but we’re contributing to the larger global navigation picture…indoor navigation is becoming just as important as finding your way outdoors.”
Green’s background includes time in wayfinding industries and venture capital and sales. He previously was employed as the CEO of GDS Inc. before joining Connexient. He has previously worked with startup companies in both the healthcare and enterprise software sectors. At GDS, Green and business partner Joe Motta worked on hospital wayfinding applications.
“As the proliferation of outdoor GPS platforms emerged (MapQuest, Google Maps and Waze), we innovated a mobile app called MediNav; it is a revolutionary solution for digital wayfinding in hospitals,” Green said of the indoor navigation platform.
He said that despite digital privacy concerns, customers who utilize MediNav needn’t worry about being spied upon.
“There are always concerns about user privacy when dealing with mobile devices, but Connexient keeps everything anonymous,” he said. “I don’t see this as a drawback because we don’t know whom the end user is, we just help them get to where they need to go.”