Navigating Healthcare – Patient Safety and Personal Healthcare Management

The Future of Healthcare as Seen Through the Eyes of @kpTotalHealth with @Tedeytan #HealthIT

I posted a piece that was published on FastCompany site at the end of last month:

Could The Future Of Health Care Mean No Waits In Hospitals?

It included a link to an original concept from the innovative Kaiser founder Dr Sidney R. Garfield

I shared this with my wife who is an accomplished midwife (she stopped counting her deliveries after she hit 1,000) and we both shared a laugh but as she pointed out – at the time it was a brilliant compromise between two competing interest:

On the one hand you have healthcare wanting to help mothers rest after giving birth
On the other hand you have mothers who’s genes are screaming at them – be with your baby

In this particular instance the National Health Service (NHS) in England was ahead of its time, guided by an experienced and well respected cadre of midwives who promoted and encouraged rooming in of babies when they were born. We experienced this with our children but our youngest was born here in the United States and at the time it was a fight to stop the nurses from removing our daughter from the room

I had the privilege of visiting the Kaiser Total Health facility and spent an invigorating few hours with Dr Ted Eytan, Physician Director in the Kaiser Permanente Federation (@TedEytan and his blog)

He was kind enough to reply to my article in a tweet:

And the details even appeared in the wall of knowledge with the background that I captured here:

Ted shared a link to the original history
KP’s ‘Baby in the Drawer’ Helped Turn the Tide Back to Breastfeeding Babies after World War II Which tells the story of the driver on this innovation centered around better outcomes from keeping mothers and babies together:

Sidney R. Garfield he had read an interesting article about the now famous Yale University School of Medicine research experiments with rooming-in for mothers and babies

Kaiser Permanente has continued their continued innovation – Small Hospital, Big Idea which continues and contributes to their impressive growth:

An Impressive and consistent increase in Patients

All this is embodied in the Kaiser Total Health Center that brings together existing and new technology in innovative ways. Everything from the large screen introduction:

 Through to the handheld ultrasound device:

It includes patient education with the explosion of the obesity epidemics – captured in this video graphic
The mock up health room 
Mock up Patient Examination Room
and placed working technology in the reach of innovators, patients and clinicians
3-D Visualization for Patient Engagment on Medication

 and simple technology – but so important – two hand sets for one phone so patient and health care worker can both listen in to the same conversation with immediate availability for language translation (I’m willing to be we won’t need a telephone for this simultaneous translation in the near future)

and the room and facility continues to be updated:
No doubt Ted who is is currently exploring the GoogleGlass Innovation (you can read about his exploration here in his blog “The USA #ThroughGlass“) will be including some of his google glass experiences as they learn more about this innovation
I believe
Paper and manilla folders will become a thing of the past relegated to museums
this will be true and perhaps when I am lying in my hospital bed will look back at this age and think

Mostly, I know that someday, someone in my same CMIO and MD shoes will think how silly it was that doctors actually hand-typed patient notes


Want to See #Mobile #Health Success – Look to #Africa #mHealth

Posted in #mHealth, Africa, Disruptive, HealthIT, Kenya by drnic on October 25, 2013

I’ve said it before – Africa like many of the under developed countries is exploding with great use cases for mHealth. This piece: Kenya Has Mobile Health App Fever tracks the explosion of #mHealth.
Promoted and supported by the Kenyan Medical Association and Shimba Technologies the latest release MedAfrica offer ready access to medical information and verifying clinicians in the field and even a tool to verify the authenticity of drugs.

With over 50% of banking done by mobile phone in Kenya they are clearly adopting the platform in large numbers (Kenya is rich in mobile phones, with 25 million subscribers; Africa has more than 600 million of them). Applying #mHealth to the slew of health problems is exciting and rewarding. The size of and range of health challenges is daunting:

Many Kenyans have serious health problems; for example, according to the World Health Organization, more than 30 percent of children under age five show stunted growth. At present, only 7,000 doctors serve a nation of 40 million people. 

All this out of a company that was founded by Stephen Kyalo and Keziah Mumo, with $100,000 in seed money from a European VC

Seen here Steve Mutinda Kyalo

And its not just Kenya:

Mobile health platforms are making a strong showing in other parts of Africa, too. In South Africa, efforts include platforms that give HIV-infected patients automated ways to receive health information and reminders about upcoming doctor visits. In Johannesburg, 10,000 people infected with HIV have taken on these SMS-based alerts, resulting in big declines in missed appointments.
In Ghana and Liberia, a group called Africa Aid is experiencing strong success with MDNet, a system that allows users to call or text doctors for free. Since its founding in 2008, 1,900 physicians in Ghana have logged more than a million calls to patients, the group says.

Having real impact with that funding – awesome

Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika

You can take the boy out of Africa, but you can’t take Africa out of the boy

Interview from #Health2Con with @DocWeighsIn on #speechrecognition #HealthIT #NLP and beyond

Loved spending time with Dr Pat Salber (@DocWeighsIn) from the Health 2.0 conference that took place a couple of weeks ago

I had the privilege of watching her in action as she blended social media with the sessions at Health 2.0 and tweeted a picture of her in action

We spent some time afterwards talking about innovation in HealthIT and documentation on subjects as wide and varied as Florence and INtelligent assistants through Speech Recognition and Natural Language Processing (NLP) or Clinical Language Understanding (CLU):

If We can Build Smart Shelves to Sell more can we do the Same to be Healthier?

Posted in Uncategorized by drnic on October 14, 2013
Snackmaker Modernizes the Impulse Buy with Sensors, Analytics
This company is building “smart shelves,” to help them identify people and sell to them more directly targeted adverts and products….
new display units located by checkout counters, that will use sensor technology to identify the age and sex of the would-be snacker, analytics to determine what type of guilty pleasure best appeals and a video display to deliver custom advertisements. “Knowing that a consumer is showing interest in the product gives us the opportunity to engage with them in real-time,” 
THis seems like ideal technology to use in a medical setting to help influence patient behavior for positive effect and perhaps even in the home to positively influence good healthy behavior?

Consumer Reports on Healthcare – Can #HealthIT Fix the Problems

Posted in Health Reform, HealthIT, Meaningful Use, Personal Health Management by drnic on October 7, 2013

Consumer reports published a Medical Gripes report What bugs you most about your doctor?
We asked 1,000 people about their biggest medical gripes recently

It included the chart “Grip-o-Meter”

What struck me was the number of elements that could be addressed using Healthcare Technology (HealthIT). While technology may not be a panacea it is a tool to help resolve problems, improve efficiency and ease communication and flow of information

For example – “Test Results not communicated fast”. In the current day and age of instant communications, mobile phones and messaging why is it patients are left waiting hours, days sometimes weeks to receive a test result. There has been some push back by the medical profession on releasing results without allowing the doctor an opportunity to explain or contact the patient. IN one site they offer this compromise – test results are held for 24 hours maximum to offer the doctor a chance o reach out to the patient but if they have not the results are automatically released anyway.

Given the pressure of time and the challenges we face with resources and the too frequent occurrences of missed communication of results sometimes resulting in poor outcomes it would seem offering an automated results communication tool to all patients would be a simple step in improving satisfaction? If I can get an automated alert when my favorite team is playing, when the score is close capturing a cell phone number when we carry out a test and using this for outbound messaging seems like an obvious step and one that #HealthIT could play a role.

I bet others could see ideas based on the other “Gripes” – send me a note or leave a comment and I’ll pull this together into a more detail post

Why U.S. Health Care Is Obscenely Expensive, In 12 Charts

Posted in Uncategorized by drnic on October 6, 2013

Just too good not to share

Why U.S. Health Care Is Obscenely Expensive, In 12 Charts
‘Nuff Said
The Charts

here are some illustrations of the wasteful spending.