To improve health and health care faster… (fill in the blank)

I was honored to be invited to TEDMED by the Pioneer Portfolio of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Their team encouraged all attendees to complete one of three sentences:

  • “To improve health and health care, we need to start asking…”
  • “To improve health and health care faster, we must…”
  • “My bold idea for transforming health and health care is…”

You can see the results of this thought experiment on Flickr, on Twitter (#ideapowered) or on YouTube. Here’s what I said:

The sound isn’t perfect, so here’s what I meant: Acknowledge the power of networked patients and caregivers.

Many people talk about how consumers are the greatest untapped information resource in medicine, but the Pew Internet Project’s research shows that patients and caregivers are already accessing that knowledge via social media (and less whiz-bang technologies). The health care system just needs to tap into the parallel system that has sprung up.

What do you think?  Which of the questions would you like to answer?  Please tell us in the comments.


Posted in: hc's problem list | patient networks





4 Responses to “To improve health and health care faster… (fill in the blank)”

  1. “My bold idea for transforming health and health care is…” Instantly allocating the right healthcare provider to the right place at the right time- by 2-way phone, text and email- 1 hour of phone calls in under 3 minutes WITH realtime responses and confirmations-

    You know, the future of healthcare communications :-)

    Healthcare does not happen without Healthcare Providers…

    Matthew Browning

    Thanks, Susan and RWJF!

  2. So many ideas! Number 1:

    To improve health and health care faster we need to teach people how to be their own primary care provider.

    • Susannah Fox says:

      Thanks, Joanne!

      Can you give me an example of what you’re thinking about? I’m curious about what you mean.

      My primary care doc acts as a coach, evaluating my overall health & helping me to figure out which tests I should take (but I’ll admit he was taken aback when I went in the following year and ordered up my own follow-up tests via his nurse :)

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