Health 2.0 – S.F. is now over and I can honestly say that the ePatient movement is fully under way. Everyone is now involved – even the insurance companies. BCBS, CIGNA and AETNA appear to be leading the way here. Does this mean that they are paying physicians more for participating in Internet Healthcare or will this 40% reduction of in-office visits from online visits simply become a corporate windfall? – we shall see!
Participatory healthcare is my favorite name for this new movement because it seems friendly and progressive at the same time. Now that we have a Journal of Participatory Healthcare, this term appears to have achieved social validation.
We started Doctations many years ago to build a platform for doctor and patient collaboration when no one was thinking of cloud computing in healthcare – at least out loud! That is why we had physician and patient focus groups before we ever wrote a line of code. What is most remarkable is that the conclusions reached by our focus groups in early 2003 are equivalent to the underlying principles of participatory healthcare of today. It is not surprising, just notable that our patients and physicians helped us understand this movement years before it ever occurred.
Kudos to Dr. Charles Colangelo, our first Director of the Patient Advisory board, who led meetings in my waiting room with patients of every persuasion who pointed the way toward the future of patient care. Dr. Colangelo then served as a board member for Doctations and Secretary of the Board. Dr. Colangelo was actually a patient of mine – thats how we met. I am sure he would not mind me conveying the details of that event. It was late on a Tuesday evening and my office hours were running late and I was completely exhausted. I was running from one exam room to another when I caught a glimpse of something odd in my waiting room. I doubled back to find a man dressed in full clown regalia sitting waiting to see me. His smile was radiant, his exam took forever – undressing (and dressing) a clown is not easy!
Dr. Colangelo passed away two months ago – very soon after being diagnosed with cancer. But his work lives on. Participatory healthcare is Doctations – we know what it means to patients and we know how it will help the medical profession. Our technology is catalyzing this transformation as you read this.
Health 2.0 was an opportunity for Doctations to make some key announcements:
1. Doctations data is stored in a Private Trust that legally protects the data from being sold (identified or de-identified) without the explicit permission of the doctor who authored the report and the patient who is the subject of the report. Furthermore, should Doctations, Inc. ownership change, the data in Doctations-operated servers will not be part of the transfer.
2. Doctations will offer the complete Doctations package to medical students for creating their medical reports and for newly graduating residents who were starting in private practice. As a cloud-based system, they can use it anywhere there is an Internet connection.
3. Doctations will initiate a program of licensing our software with source code to University Medical Centers and Government Agencies. Along with support to assist in development of new modules and enhancements as required.
4. And finally, we are open-sourcing the iMedicalHome.com patient portal and providing an API for integration of external applications into the iMedicalHome environment.
Doctations, Inc., was well-received at Health 2.0 and we were amazed by the non-stop activity at our booth. While there, many new physicians joined the DocPatientNetwork. Onward towards a national DocPatientNetwork with millions of users and better healthcare for all of them.