Health IT

TEDMED innovation panel: We’re on the verge of a patient engagement explosion

The biggest challenge of innovation in healthcare is not so much in coming up with great ideas. It’s coming up with ideas that can fit into the systems for how providers are reimbursed and demonstrating they can improve patient outcomes.

On the other hand, innovation can be as simple and cost effective as providing small, achievable diet goals to improve a patient’s health that mimic gamification. It can also be providing mobile phones to pregnant women as part of a Medicaid program to ensure they can be reached for follow up care. Those were some of the critical points raised in a thoughtful TEDMED discussion Achieving more medical innovation more affordably.

The panel discussion moderated by John Nosta, an executive vice president, and senior strategist at Ogilvy CommonHealth Worldwide, lobbed questions at experts and took some from Twitter and Facebook in a discussion that talked about what’s driving innovation, what’s hindering it and how to make patient engagement a bigger priority.

One of the first questions brought up was on patient engagement. How important is engaging the patient to be a more active player in their care?






The issue of what drives innovation came up a lot. No other industry relies quite as much on academic institutions as healthcare, a couple of the panelists noted. But does innovation come from clinical need, clinical necessity or both?

Diego Miralles of Janssen touched on how the pressure the HIV/AIDS community exerted for the healthcare industry to develop a cure. That led to new drugs being developed. One panelist, pondering why the healthcare industry lacked that sense of forcefulness, concluded it’s not so much that the healthcare industry is resistant or lacks courage.  Trying to be innovative in the narrow confines of a regulatory framework can have a frustrating. Still, with the frequently cited issue of adherence, there’s a lot of interest in solving that problem because there’s so much at stake if adherence rates were improved — pharmaceutical companies would make more revenue, payer costs would shrink and healthcare would be more efficient.

Breast cancer activists are next! MT @fastercures: @margaretaindc #HIV/AIDS activists successful b/c got smart on science #greatchallenges — AnneMarie Ciccarella (@chemobrainfog) January 10, 2013

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