Precision Healthcare

chou soh blog 2_2018Making a difference in the lives of the 2.2B children in the world.

As a healthcare professional, you might agree that something has to change in our healthcare system. While we could debate public policy, insurance carriers and the law, I’ll make a case there are significant steps in technology, which could fundamentally change healthcare in the US and the rest of the world.

These days Artificial Intelligence/AI has become part of popular press articles. You might have seen the singer, Common, talking about AI on a recent Microsoft TV ad. As consumers, we experience the power of Siri, Alexa or Google to recognize speech and if you’re on Facebook, you’ve seen how well facial recognition can work.
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HealthCare’s Technological Revolution Is Here!

blogHealthcare in the USA and across the globe is in crisis! We are plagued with erratic quality, unequal access, and sky-high costs. The good news is that we are on the cusp of radical change – we’ re in the midst of an avalanche of converging technologies in medical science, software, hardware and communications and this perfect storm is transforming medicine and healthcare in ways that sounded like science fiction a mere decade ago. This is giving medical professionals, patients and key industry players the unprecedented ability to make appropriate healthcare more accessible, affordable and humanistic.

Patients, physicians, pharma and regulators would do well to face these profound changes, as their lives and their industries will not look the same after they have transpired.
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MEDICAID: Putting It Into Perspective

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Medicaid is in the news every day. People, politicians, policymakers, providers, and payers are expressing points of view ranging from kill it to expand it. Unfortunately, most people are not well informed about what Medicaid is. I would like to help on the informing part of the issue by describing what it is, how it works, who qualifies, how much it costs, and some policy choices I see. This is a very complex subject, so I will lay it out in bite-sized posts. Consider this first post as a backgrounder. If you want to dig deep into the subject, I recommend visiting The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
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A New Prescription for Healthcare: Creativity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship

health-2082630_1280We are living through what is arguably the most challenging time for the health care industry. Globally, health care appears to be on a collision course with patient needs and economic reality. No one is happy with the current system, and the combination of rising costs, poor access, inequitable care, and diminishing quality and safety has created anxiety and frustration for all. Decades of interventions have failed to improve the situation; if anything, things have become worse. Current approaches tend to focus on a single issue or problem (the price of drugs, rising numbers without medical insurance, provider incentives to over treat), but an overarching solution has remained elusive.
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What the Next President Should Do: Healthcare Common Sense

The 2016 election is over, and a top priority for the new administration and Congress is healthcare. The candidates discussed little substance about healthcare during the campaigns, despite the fact it is approaching 20% of our economy and touches every American. You could say the problems in healthcare have been caused by action by one party and inaction by another party. You could say Republicans want this and Democrats want that, but I don’t think labeling should be the focus. The problem is Congress (both parties) are tied to special interest groups. Insurers, medical device manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, and the plaintiff’s bar, along with Congress created our unaffordable healthcare system.
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Telehealth Performance – How Good Is It?

Telehealth is here to stay, but it will go through an evolution like all new technology shifts. A new study evaluated performance of teledermatology. The results were mixed. There were incorrect diagnoses and missed diagnoses. Treatment recommendations were not always consistent with guidelines. Prescriptions frequently lacked disclosure about possible adverse effects.  The study was limited because there are not yet large numbers of cases to evaluate. A significant limitation to the study was the authors were unable to assess whether clinicians seeing these patients in traditional in-person encounters would have performed any better.

On balance, telehealth is a good thing. It has the potential to expand access to more patients, and the medical literature is filled with examples of telehealth systems providing quality care.


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Accelerating Cancer Treatment

Re-Posted from John Patrick’s Blog on Accelerating Cancer Treatment…I remember being at a technology conference in 1999 when teenagers Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning demonstrated a digital music service called Napster. It was the beginning of a revolution, and it made a lot of sense to me. The rock group Metallica sued Napster in 2000 and the momentum of music sharing slowed – temporarily. I never saw the problem as theft. I saw it as an industry unwilling to give up the status quo and give consumers a way to purchase music. It took Steve Jobs, the iPod, and iTunes to ignite major growth in digital music.
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What the Next President Should Do About Healthcare!

Dr. John Patrick has the following to say to our next president:

The 2016 political scene is unfolding. In less than a year, American citizens will decide who our next President will be. So far, in the debates, town halls, and speeches, little substance has been discussed about healthcare, despite the fact it is approaching 20% of our economy and touches every American. You could say the problems in healthcare have been caused by action by one party and inaction by another party. You could say Republicans want this and Democrats want that, but I don’t think labeling should be the focus.
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Mobile Devices for Better Health

In a recent article, Healthcare Selfies: Consumers Go Mobile for Better Health, Dr. John Patrick features mobile devices for consumers to monitor their health. One such device is AliveCor. It has a heart monitor that attaches to the back of an iPhone and creates a 30-second EKG. A team of engineers at Cornell University has developed a smartphone camera attachment that takes a photo of a single drop of blood that a consumer has placed on a strip, and in a matter of seconds a colorimetric analysis displays cholesterol level. Read the article for additional devices. The pace of mHealth adoption will accelerate; self-monitoring and self-diagnosis are here to stay.
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Technology and Healthcare Join Forces to Promote Prevention & Wellness

It’s not unlikely to find someone in our office marching in place so that he/she can gain a few steps over another person in the office who has held the most steps in a week – for 10 weeks in a row!  In case you aren’t familiar with Fitbit, it is “a wireless activity tracker that makes every step you take a step toward better fitness”-a quote taken right from the box it is shipped in.

It seems technology and healthcare are continuing to deliver monitoring devices to assist individuals in controlling the prevention of disease and increasing the wellness community.
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