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Assuta Medical Centers and Rhino Health: A Pioneering Journey with Federated Datasets

Updated: Feb 2

Assuta Medical Centers, a premier health network in Israel, is constantly on the lookout for new technologies to deploy for its patients. Assuta and its innovation arm, RISE, faced challenges in leveraging its rich data while complying with Israel’s strong privacy regulations, which are similar to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in the United States and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in Europe. Assuta’s journey to find a balance between maximizing the potential public health impact of their data, while adhering to privacy regulations led them to Rhino Health’s Federated Computing Platform (FCP).


At the Crossroads: Navigating Data Utilization While Preserving Patient Privacy


Assuta collaborates with researchers around the world - both in academia and industry using its wealth of data. Several challenges hampers these collaborations:


  1. Respect for Data Privacy Laws: First and foremost, Assuta wants to respect patient privacy and remain compliant with Israel’s stringent privacy laws, similar to HIPAA in the U.S. and GDPR in Europe, to ensure secure patient data handling. Sharing data directly with partners presented a risk to be controlled.

  2. Operational Challenges: Identifying and sharing relevant data with external partners is labor-intensive, involving complex queries to assess the feasibility of projects and back-and-forth communications that often led to lost opportunities and wasted efforts.

  3. Risk of Data Re-identification: Traditional data sharing methods pose a risk of re-identifying de-identified data, highlighting the need for a more secure, efficient platform for data utilization.


These challenges created a paradox where the potential of Assuta’s data couldn’t be fully harnessed, obstructing research collaborations and medical advancements.


The Game Changer: Rhino Health’s Federated Datasets


Rhino Health offers the Federated Computing Platform (FCP), which enables decentralized data processing directly at the source, ensuring data privacy and security by making it so AI developers never have to take ownership of distributed data. The Rhino Health's FCP Federated Datasets feature applies this technology, allowing healthcare institutions to collaborate in research without transferring sensitive patient data. The Federated Datasets feature facilitates secure and efficient data analysis while maintaining data privacy, allowing:


  1. Compliance with Privacy Regulations: The Federated Datasets feature adheres to privacy laws by enabling data analysis without exposing individual patient data.

  2. Efficient Data Management: By utilizing Federated Computing, the feature streamlines data sharing processes, allowing industry partners to query Assuta’s data in a privacy-preserving manner, significantly reducing operational burdens and expediting collaborations.

  3. Enhanced Data Utilization with Minimal Privacy Risks: The feature is built on top of Rhino Health’s Platform, which addresses the risk of data re-identification in traditional data-sharing methods. Allowing only AI model characteristics (like weights and gradients) to be shared, rather than raw data significantly reduces the risk of privacy breaches. This method is particularly effective in healthcare given the sensitivity of the data.

  4. Integration with Assuta’s Systems: Rhino Health’s client is seamlessly integrated into Assuta’s existing IT infrastructure, maintaining data within the hospital’s environment and only sharing AI model characteristics, not the raw data.


"Rhino Health's Federated Datasets feature enables Assuta to collaborate with industry partners to promote healthcare innovation while ensuring patient privacy is held to the highest standard. We have been able to accelerate collaborations from months to weeks." - Daniel Rabina, Chief Innovation Officer, Assuta Medical Centers

A New Era of Healthcare Research: The Innovative Benefits of Federated Datasets


The implementation of Rhino Health’s Federated Datasets feature brings significant benefits:


  1. Global Data Innovation Ecosystem Participation: By using Federated Datasets, Assuta Medical Centers have been enabled to actively contribute to data-driven innovation in healthcare. This capability allows them to engage in collaborative research while upholding the highest standards of patient privacy and data governance.

  2. Enhanced Data Value and Reusability: The implementation of the Federated Datasets feature has raised the ‘lifetime value’ of Assuta’s data. It has promoted reusability across multiple data licensees and ongoing enrichment of the datasets, including the addition of new fields and data types, thereby augmenting their utility for AI-driven research and applications. Generating this kind of high-margin, low-cost revenue is critical for healthcare leaders today given the new normal of tight profit margins and staffing challenges.

  3. Streamlined Operations and Reduced Friction: The Rhino Health’s Federated Datasets feature has minimized operational friction, evidenced by more streamlined contracts and efficient processes, such as feasibility assessments.

  4. Reduced IT Investment: The introduction of the Federated Datasets feature has led to minimal IT investment requirements for Assuta. By leveraging Rhino Health’s sophisticated Federated Computing Platform, Assuta has been able to optimize its data utility without the need for substantial additional IT infrastructure or resources.


Transformative Impact: Redefining Health Data Management


Rhino Health’s Federated Datasets feature transforms Assuta Medical Centers’ approach to collaborative medical research, balancing data utility with stringent privacy while paving the way for future innovations in medical research. This partnership stands as a testament to the power of secure, efficient data collaboration in unlocking groundbreaking insights. The seamless integration of Federated Datasets feature has enhanced Assuta’s research collaborations, streamlined operations, and reinforced data security, making a new benchmark in the industry.


Transform your research with Rhino Health’s Federated Datasets — where security meets innovation.

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