I’ll be on a panel in the late afternoon talking about technology and the future of aging, directly after Tim Brown and Barbara Beskind discuss universal design. (Read this Wall Street Journal article about some of Beskind’s ideas.)Continue reading →
One year ago this week I was in Sweden to deliver a talk at Almedalen, a festival of ideas held on the island of Gotland.
This year, my community colleague John Nosta brought the latest in American ingenuity to the same event, telling the crowd that digital health is not a far-off promise, but instead simply requires the implementation of technology that exists today. I’ll update this post when The video of his talk is up and you can check out his tweets.
The comments alone are worth a click — fascinating conversations about interoperability of health IT systems, collectivism, equity, and value networks. The conversation is never over, so please post new questions and comments if you see something that inspires you!
Portraits of past HHS secretaries overlooking an IDEA Lab design session
Technology enables the mission of U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS). It widens access to information and tools and pushes power out to all parts of the network, from our colleagues in the federal workforce to our fellow citizens. At HHS, we seek to create a learning system that recognizes the potential of every stakeholder in the network to contribute, from patients and caregivers to clinicians, researchers and policymakers.
The CTO of HHS serves the Secretary and the agency by bringing new approaches to the problems faced by those on the front lines of medicine, public health, and social services.
I see the role as a spotlight and a beacon, highlighting the innovative work being done inside and outside the federal government and inspiring people to reach higher, in service to citizens. Continue reading →
My new job is wonderfully immersive. I leave home early, come back late, and, in between, spend hours talking with people about the future of health, health care, and technology (broadly defined). The HHS IDEA Lab blog will be my outlet for sharing ideas related to the work I do there. This site will serve, as it always has, as a sandbox and outboard memory — the beginnings and middles of ideas, not always the polished ends.
I wore a 10-lb. weight around my right ankle and, at Gretchen’s suggestion, a high heel shoe on my right foot and a sneaker on my left. In this way I had to be aware of my gait and balance. Plus she assigned my two sons a job: to say “Freeze” randomly throughout the day. I would have to stop in my tracks for at least 30 seconds. This would mimic the challenge that people with Parkinson’s have, particularly when crossing the street. Continue reading →
The word pair that resonates most with me is “alienate vs. attract,” possibly because it reminds me of my grandmother‘s advice: You catch more bees with honey than with vinegar. How about you? What resonates?
Quantified Self Public Health is back! 150+ health geeks of many stripes will gather on Thursday, May 14, in San Diego to discuss how access to personal data could benefit individuals and society.
It is an invite-only meeting (sorry!) but filled with voracious documentarians like Joyce Lee (read her Storify from last year) and, well, me (read my round-up post, which also links to others’ blogs). Follow the tweets on the #QSPH hashtag, too.
Observations and conclusions from last year’s QSPH event were captured in an in-depth report (PDF) and in a series of videos. Here is one of my favorites: Ian Eslick’s talk on the role of personal experimentation in the medical and scientific process:
This year it will be my privilege to interview Don Norman, a design pioneer, on stage.
This point reminds me of conversations I’ve had with people who design communications for HIV clinical trials. They need to use “one voice with many inflections” — that is, one set of facts, but tailored to the population they are targeting, such as sex workers in Thailand vs. Peru.
A key element of the QSPH meeting is that it will be populated by toolmakers and tinkerers. People who make and hack their way to insights about health. So I’m also reading Mark Hatch’s book, The Maker Movement Manifesto.
How might we harness the energy of all the people who are making a way out of no way, every day, in health care (that is, patients and their loved ones)? How might we empower them with data and resources? How might we learn from them, and them from us?
Please let me know if you have a question for Don Norman. I know our time will go very quickly, but I want to squeeze as much as I can into the conversation!
I am grateful to the women (and a few men) who help me care for my son with food allergies. I’ve never met most of them in person, but they are there for me, 24×7, answering questions and sharing resources. Continue reading →