How Intelligence Amplification Can Empower Healthcare Providers


Our Chief Medical and Strategy Officer shares how your EHR system should use IA to help in the exam room and beyond

Computers are smart. Doctors are smarter. Computers cannot replace the human interaction we have with our patients and they cannot replace us diagnostically. So, as it turns out, artificial intelligence in healthcare doesn’t have a place in our exam rooms, but intelligence amplification (IA) just may.

You know how when you start to fill out a form, type a few characters and then the form auto-populates with the rest (if you choose to accept your computer’s suggestion)? That’s IA. Does your phone sometimes offer you an estimated time of arrival when you start driving to a familiar location? IA. This is your technology acting as an executive assistant, without ever asking it to. This is IA.

Based on a unique EMA™ username, the EMR software can recognize your preferred methods and even suggest your top diagnoses and treatments.


A good electronic health record (EHR) uses IA too. You may have noticed that EMA has prescriptions you commonly use rise to the top for you to quickly select them. You didn’t have to specifically program this. Neither did I. It’s adaptive learning and EMA used it to learn what you prefer. Or plans you use most often. Likewise, EMA can offer you documentation of the materials you commonly use for a biopsy or procedure, so you can quickly choose what you prefer and avoid having to scroll past what a different physician uses.

EMA’s Protocols feature makes the best dermatology EMR even better by letting you create master visits for conditions you encounter frequently as a dermatologist. This means you can record patient, procedure, diagnosis and treatment information once, then effortlessly apply it to exams like routine visits, new patients and pre- and post-operative instructions.

Future directions for intelligence amplification

EMA has done this for a while, but recently, Modernizing Medicine has been taking IA even further. Now, EMA is being developed to use IA to recognize that a drug you prescribe requires a prior authorization and to help you to get forms ready before you transmit the prescription to the pharmacy. EMA will just know. No clicks needed. Ultimately, EMA was created to erase the space that documentation requirements had created between doctors and our patients, so it was with that in mind that EMA utilizes IA to automatically collect certain quality measures for value-based medicine reporting without the physician having to box check. You did it. EMA knows you did it. So, it’s done.

In thinking about how IA can reduce physician stress and increase job satisfaction, a perfect role for IA will be in local insurance coverage determination. Insurance companies deny claims when they argue that the physician hasn’t included the information that he or she must. But who can keep up with the vagaries of insurance company rules? There are so many insurance companies and so many rules—too many for any human to know. That’s where IA comes in. By “knowing” what the rules are in advance, a future step for IA and EMA will be to reduce denials by notifying the physician when required components for billing are missing from the claim.

The promise of technology is in making our lives simpler and less complicated. Harnessing the power of IA is how an intelligent EHR can accomplish that goal.

Interested in learning more about EMA for your practice?

Michael Sherling, MD, MBA

Michael Sherling, MD, MBA

Chief Medical and Strategy Officer and co-founder

Dr. Michael Sherling is the co-founder and Chief Medical and Strategy Officer of Modernizing Medicine. In 2014 Michael, along with Dan Cane, received the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership in Healthcare Award.

Michael is responsible for the strategy and medical innovation within Modernizing Medicine’s suite of products and services for dermatology, gastroenterology, ophthalmology, orthopedics, plastic surgery, otolaryngology and urology specialties. With Dan Cane, he has developed novel software solutions for EHR, MIPS and ICD-10 automation.

Under his leadership, Modernizing Medicine has established a user base of over 12,000 providers and raised over $318 million in capital.

Michael is a dynamic speaker and has had the honor of speaking at the 2017 Association of Dermatology Administrators & Managers (ADAM) Annual Meeting, the 2016 Dermatology Entrepreneurship Conference and 2015 Health 2.0 Conference’s “Tools to Fix the Clinical User Experience.”

Michael has been a practicing dermatologist since 2006 and currently practices in a comprehensive skin care dermatology group in Palm Beach County, Florida. Michael also serves on the Advisory Board for the Florida Atlantic University Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine. Michael is board certified by the American Board of Dermatology. Prior to relocating to Florida, he was the Associate Director of Laser Medicine and Skin Health at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and served as the Associate Residency Program Director for Harvard Medical School’s Department of Dermatology. He has several publications in peer-reviewed medical literature.

Michael obtained his BS in Biology at Brown University with honors in 1996, his MD from Yale School of Medicine with honors in 2002 and his MBA from Yale School of Management in 2002. He received his clinical training at Harvard Medical School, where he served as chief resident in dermatology.

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