Québec is now on a journey to build similar digital health architecture for the province, and an Estonian company named Kodality is there to contribute to that process.
Kodality is an Estonian company offering software solutions in e-government, finance, and the company’s main competence – healthcare. Kodality was established in 2017, but its founders have quite impressive experience in digital health long before that. They have contributed to the development of the Lithuanian national health information system, the digital prescription in the United Arab Emirates, and different health and hospital information systems in Estonia. Now, Kodality is a partner helping to draft a modern vision of electronic healthcare together with the Estonian Health and Welfare Information Systems Centre, the state-operated technology competence centre for the fields of health, social security, and labour.
With this kind of experience, it is no wonder that Kodality’s reputation has travelled internationally, and four years ago they were contacted by a Canadian company, operating in the healthcare market, for collaboration. Canada is well-known for its advanced healthcare, yet the digitalization of the system still needs to catch up. Now Québec is dedicated to modernizing their health systems – in 2022, the province announced a plan to invest almost $1 billion to update and integrate the health information systems for the whole region. Currently the common practice is to store health data at different repositories, without an ability to access all actual records collectively in a point of time. However, the vision is to make real-time health records available across all levels of the healthcare system, helping clinicians provide better, patient-centric care. “Imagine you, as a clinician, can see all patient’s data from his/her date of birth to the present day, refined and categorized. This is a tool that will increase the quality of healthcare, because now you would see all the relevant information required to make the right care decisions” says Maksim Boiko, Chief Operating Officer at Kodality.
Kodality joined the initiative a year ago, and they have found the experience and knowledge gained from working in Canada very valuable. The North American market offers great opportunities – a chance to work with high-level experts, and to be part of a large-scale implementation and change management project that you would not see in Estonia. However, working with large organisations also provides a cultural lesson. Maksim Zukov, Head of Delivery at Kodality, notes, “Understanding the corporate chain of decision-making requires effort.” In Estonia reaction times tend to be shorter and the focus is on efficiency. Instead, large-scale implementations require more focus on procedures and processes, to make sure that multiple teams are working in a consistent cadence.
Of course, the time difference between Estonia and Canada, and not being able to communicate with other project partners face-to face for eight hours of the day pose some difficulties. However, both Kodality and their Canadian partners have made efforts to make sure the workflow is smooth, and that everyone is committed to the process.
As Kodality has entered into a five-year collaboration project, we are sure to hear more about their work. Kodality sees North America as a great market, offering challenges not only in digital health, but in many other areas. For more information about their activities and potential cooperation, please contact Kodality at email@example.com
As for other companies looking to enter the North American market, Kodality’s advice is not to be afraid. “In Estonia we are used to delivering a lot, over a short period of time, with great quality. This is our competitive advantage that you can count on to impress your future partners.”