That’s a Tim O’Reilly maxim, not original to me. I quoted it, exasperated, after reading this article:
The biggest merger you didn’t hear about yesterday
If you haven’t read it yet, please do. It is damn good and damn right. Sorry. It’s just that I feel like the frog in the pot who just saw the thermometer.
As I often do, I shared my feelings on Twitter:
Let’s all work on stuff that matters today. Me: caregivers. You?
— Susannah Fox (@SusannahFox) May 22, 2013
Eight people replied with what they’re working on:
- OK City relief efforts
- Helping people become more informed, confident healthcare decision makers
- Building Community
- helping people better understand high-deductible health plans
- today for me it’s also caregivers, in a way. Spoke to providers this week who feel burnt out. That’s a big problem!
- Sick minority children.
- eHealth equity
Thank you! Let’s keep working on stuff that matters and paying attention to stuff that matters. Ideas for how to do that? Please comment.
Rebecka Sexton says
helping people make behavior changes regarding their health
Susannah Fox says
Nice! I’d love if people kept tweeting & commenting — keep the inspiration going.
Catherine Rose says
Here’s my current big project: https://bitly.com/ZhT0Bh
Helping to create new products for kids like Alexis.
Working on finding a way to share insights across learning networks to improve outcomes for all patients with all diseases/conditions.
Lisa Gualtieri says
Thank you for suggesting people step back and prioritize. I wish I could say I was working to eliminate world hunger or end cancer, but I am one removed from goals like that: teaching the people who may do things like that. Hopefully I am teaching them the right things.
Right now I am refining this evening’s Mobile Health Design course. It in, my students are designing apps to be used by patients in a doctor’s office (and possibly before, after, or even in the waiting room) and that are embraced by both as being beneficial. The doctor’s office is one of the few places people rarely use their smartphone.
Mike Pistiner, MD, MMSc, of AllergyHome.com, a pediatric allergist, joined class last week to talk about what he does and how an app might help with intake and education. In class, we discussed the following focusing on visits to a pediatric allergist:
1 The differences between initial and repeat visits in terms of the design of an app
2 The reasons why a patient is there – urgent, routine, follow up – and the impact on history and education
3 The implications of who is with a patient since they are children – one parent, both parents, caregiver
4 Who cares for or involved in the care of a patient who isn’t there – babysitter, teacher, grandparents, siblings
5 How can taking a history be done outside of the appointment, either at home or in waiting room, to use appointment time for reviewing it and for patient care
6 What information is available at home or other locations but not in doctor’s office such as medicine cabinet
7 What forms of education can take place outside of appointment or in waiting room and what should take place during an appointment
8 What do families currently do for education, support, or tracking and what should be integrated into an appointment
9 Would people be skeptical or cynical about the app or would they embrace it?
10 How does an app fit in with an EHR or PHR? HIPAA?
Are there other questions we should consider? What are the differences in an app used in this situation and in very different types of medical appointments?
The bigger question is if care in and out of the doctor’s office can be integrated via apps and devices and how can people receive the help they need on an ongoing basis as well as for urgent needs.
Susannah Fox says
Great questions! I don’t have answers but hopefully others will — shared your comment on Twitter just now.
Brett Alder says
What a great course! I waited for the experts to answer, BTW, but couldn’t wait any longer. 🙂
“Are there other questions we should consider?”
Since we often think of health care in moral terms, it’s common for apps to focus on changing patient behavior (what they “should” do) rather than improving or enabling pre-existing patient behaviors. Of course, mapping to pre-existing behavior greatly improves the chances for adoption.
To understand pre-existing behavior I would step out of the doctor’s appointment context and discuss something familiar like, “What apps do you use before, during, and after a visit to a restaurant?” Are there any of those behaviors that patients probably want to do in a doctor’s office but currently can’t or don’t?
I’ve also found it helpful to think in terms of problems and solutions. How a patient interacts with the system will depend on the problem s/he has, and the type of solution that works for his/her problem. Some different problem examples could be: 1) Very common problem, known solution (e.g. ingrown toenail). 2) Common chronic condition, no complete solution (e.g. Crohn’s), 3) Difficult to diagnose condition (e.g. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome). I would analyze their different needs and look for niches or commonalities.
Best of Luck!