Although this talk was directed at a very specific audience, the general theme was regarding healthcare technology and re-framed as such below. The main points are:
1) From my experience as a patient, one issue at the root of the broken healthcare system today is that it is difficult for a proactive patient to find good care from doctors. Many doctors are averse to considering data collected outside of the doctor’s office or cost-intensive labs. This is despite that, most of the time, simple (and free) quantitative measures would suffice in determining the effectiveness of a dietary change, new pill, or other treatment regimen.
2) For healthcare innovation to happen in the direction of evidence-based healthcare/treatments, there are certain qualities that successful technologies have integrated into the existing, mainstream system. Those qualities are: Communication, Efficiency, and Empowerment.
a. Kaiser Permanente’s IT portal is an example of increased Communication between physicians and patients.
b. Sutter Health Clinic’s online system for ordering lab tests, getting doctor approval, and receiving test results is an example of increased Efficiency. It decreases time of the entire process from the typical 2+ weeks to 3 days.
c. Genomera’s online platform for open source clinical trials is an example of patient Empowerment.
d. Ancestral Health Insurance’s proposed system for letting members take responsibility for their own health is another example of Empowerment.
Given these existing successes, what are some other ways technology can innovate for healthcare? The discussion is just beginning.