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Innovating in your practice: Overcoming barriers to create new opportunities

Leaders from the AGA Center for GI Innovation and Technology discuss the current innovation landscape and the one thing all GIs can do to help bring innovation to their practice.

The process of incorporating innovation into a practice involves many challenges but can provide many rewards. Innovation has the potential to improve clinical outcomes, achieve greater efficiency, increase patient satisfaction, enhance safety and provide the ability to treat conditions in novel ways that afford unique marketing opportunities. However, the hard truth is that it is exceedingly difficult for gastroenterologists to introduce innovation into their practice, often for reasons outside of their control.

In the March issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, V. Raman Muthusamy, MD, AGAF, FACG, FASGE, chair of the AGA Center for GI Innovation and Technology (CGIT), and Sri Komanduri, MD, AGAF, center vice-chair, outline the challenges and opportunities for advancing innovation in GI. Although many key steps to achieving innovation in gastroenterology require a commitment from industry and approvals from regulatory bodies and payors, Drs. Muthusamy and Komanduri stress that all GIs have a role to play in enhancing innovation in GI.

The number one thing that every GI can do is be open to innovation. A culture that is comfortable with change will be the most successful at incorporating new technologies and identifying opportunities for improving the delivery of care. Innovation is not limited to the acquisition of new devices or technology. Many important innovations in practice occur from novel processes regarding the delivery of care. These process modifications can improve patient access and practice efficiency, reduce costs and enhance patient satisfaction. Examples of this could be becoming a center of excellence regarding a particular disease state, improving endoscopy unit efficiency, or focusing on improving information technology to enhance the patient experience. Identifying and acting on these opportunities requires a commitment to innovation and an openness from every player in the room.

Read the full article in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology (login required). For advice on assessing new technologies for your practice, watch the video interview below with Dr. V. Raman Muthusamy.

Want to be on the front lines of advancing innovation in GI? Join the CGIT for the 10th annual AGA Tech Summit, April 10-12 in San Francisco, California. Learn more at