Gary Oftedahl: Wish you were (had been) here…
My esteemed colleague and leader of ICSI, Kent Bottles (@KentBottles), has highlighted the keynotes from the recent ICSI Colloquium. (http://bit.ly/bwi4N1)
It was my ninth Colloquium as an ICSI staff member, and in my mind the most memorable—for many reasons. The only missing element was…..you….or at least some of you. The energy, the passion, the excitement, the conversations reverberated through the halls, going on long after the sessions ended.
Kent nicely and accurately described the dramatically different, yet equally effective approaches from our keynoters, David Shulkin, and Dave deBronkart (@ePatientDave). They indeed provided an energy for the audience, both in the use of a different technological approach (ask Dr. Shulkin about his Youtube experience) but in the unbelievable compelling tale of a single person’s battle with stage 4 renal cancer, and his ongoing commitment to shaking those of us in health care up to the need to pay attention, and “use” the expertise and experiences of our patients. I’ve heard no one in over 30 years in medicine who has so passionately and personally captured the essence of this powerful message as my good friend (not being too presumptuous, I hope) ePatientDave.
But if you’d been here, sharing in that experience, you would have also had opportunities abounding with others, from within and outside of health care. I personally had the opportunity to facilitate (or perhaps referee) a great pre-conference workshop on social networks. Jen McCabe (@jensmccabe) provided incredible energy, not to mention an enviable youth, to thinking about engaging patients in activity, using her new program—Get Up and Move—and I’m feeling the competitive juices flowing already. Gilles Frydman (@gfry) spoke of his work in ACOR, in providing textual information to patients battling with cancer. His pronouncement that “all knowledge is beta” was only one of the challenges he presented to the audience. Ben Heywood, from PatientsLikeMe, described in depth the value of the “relationships” and sharing from patients with unusual but potentially devastating neurologic conditions. In the spirit of improvisation, @ePatientDave was brought to the front table, and identified in even greater detail the opportunities and challenges which may be confronting us in the world of activated, engaged and often times demanding patients.
I left feeling there is much more to learn, but mindful of the wisdom from Clay Shirky, in his book, Here Comes Everybody, that we can’t put this cork back in the bottle, but need to address how we in health care will manage this explosion of information availability and the results it will create.
If I described every aspect of the conference, I would write a book, or at least a mini-novel. But if you’d been here, and I wish you had, you’d have heard a panel discuss the issues confronting evidence-based medicine vs. patient-centered medicine, the potential for the PHR in engaging patients, a great presentation on killer apps for the iPhone (@nbursis), health care and Second Life (@rashford), making money in a post Health 2.0 world (@paulroemer), to name just a few.
In case you’ve not noticed, we’re moving into a social media world, and our Twitter friends were a major part of this incredible experience. Lee Aase (@leeaase) expounded on the Mayo experience in social media, and as usual, wowed the audience. Gary Schwitzer (@garyschwitzer) totally engaged an attentive audience in addressing the need to better grade the health care information being presented in the news media.
But it wasn’t all about this new world we’re moving into. Discussions on Accountable Care Organizations, palliative care, shared decision making, national health care reform, leadership in today’s health care environment, and creating a model for the health care home were intended both to inform and challenge the attendees.
We heard about the work at Intermountain in integrating mental health into primary care, and the successes from the Marshfield Clinic in quality improvement. As I moved through and across the presentations, I was reinforced in thinking there is much more to learn, and we need all of those presenting (and those of you who weren’t there) to become part of this community. For yes, in some way, while only a 2 ½ day event, I felt a community developing. But if we wish to take advantage of that brief moment in time, to make this community a lasting situation, we must reach out to those we met, engage them in conversation, and learn more about how we might further those evanescent relationships.
For underneath the formal presentations, and learning opportunities, if you’d been here, you’d have felt the palpable energy, been immersed in the moment, and engaged in the breadth of expertise and passion which permeated the event.
Yes, I wish you were (had been) here…..and maybe, just maybe we’ll see you next year (May 16-18). I’m exhilarated, and exhausted, what a great combination of emotions. But I want to sustain what was begun—you’ll likely be hearing from me. Or if you’re so inclined, since we’re in the same community, “drop by”–@norskedoc, email@example.com, Facebook–let’s have a conversation. Welcome to the community!!