Archive for February, 2011

Social Media at HIMSS

February 27, 2011

Meet the Bloggers: Provider EditionI had the privilege to present three times at HIMSS11  on social media, twice at the social media center and twice on panels. My presentation at the social media center, Social Media in Health IT: Rapid Dissemination and Collaboration was brief but well received.

Social Media Panel | Provider Edition: with David Kibbe and  John Marzano was moderated by Rich Elmore was a great opportunity to interact and compare notes on social media and blogging. It was recorded -

The Meeting the Bloggers panel on Wednesday was well attended and worked well. The talented panel included
@ahier @cthielst @microsoftmd @dleyva08 .

We received a very positive review by iMedExchange titled “To Blog or Not to Blog.”

Thanks to Ceasar Torres and his team who did a great job at the HIMSS 11 Social Media Center. He even got his own interview

Overall, a great experience. Will post more about HIMSS in the next few days.

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First Day at HIMSS 11

February 21, 2011

The two highlights of my day were the HIT X.O track and the Social Media Center.

HIT X.O: Beyond the Edge is a new track to predict and discuss the future of Health IT. Beginning with a presentation of the dozens of statistics and predictions on the future of wireless and ended with the Geeks Got Talent brief demos and judges going at it. The multimedia experience was unique as was the live tweets at the bottom of the dual screens. The next stage of the competition continues tomorrow.

The social media center is expanded this year, with an afternoon of presentations. I was glad to be on a panel with Rich Elmore, David Kibbe and John Marzano this afternoon.  John’s Orlando Health Facebook page and complimentary YouTube channel are a great example of what hospitals can do with social media. We fielded questions  from the audience via twitter – a good range of queries about everything from participatory medicine to risks and opportunities in health care social media. I enjoyed the Social Media Center as a welcoming environment with an opportunity to meet many I follow on Twitter. Thanks to Ceasar Torres and other HIMSS staff in making it a welcoming place.

Tomorrow I speak about my experience with using Twitter to connect with Health 2.0 and health IT colleagues.

The twitter stream at HIMSS was very active today demonstrating a greater adoption by both attendees and vendors.

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On the Bookshelf

February 13, 2011

While I read The Myths of Innovation as an eBook, my next three are all paperbacks:

The last two are Greenbranch Publishing.

Watch for book reviews in the near future.

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Book Review – Myths of Innovation

February 12, 2011

Book cover of The Myths of InnovationThis new book from O’Reilly Media appears to be yet another book that attempts to cover the topic of innovation but does a better job than most of defining the myths and truths of  innovation historically. The author proposes that eureka moments don’t happen, and rather “there is a period of incubation in which the knowledge is digested, leading to experiments and rough attempts at solutions.” And “Nearly every major innovation of the 20th century took place without claims of epiphany.”

In discussing the history of innovation, he notes that examples like Gutenberg whose influence was not felt until after his death. The history of innovation was not straight line of successes but rather as many failures and setbacks and often governed by political and social circumstances. He notes when you really dissect the evolution of innovations that “invention and adoption is based on ordinary, selfish, and mostly short-term motivations.”

If there is a formula for innovation, it includes hard work and persistence, curiosity, the desire for wealth, and necessity. So proceeding in innovation requires: finding an idea, developing a solution, sponsorship and funding, scaling, reaching customers, beating competitors, timing, keeping the lights on. At the same time, he notes, there can be infinite paths to innovation as recent history has shown whether looking at Flickr, 3M or Craig’s List. He also destroys the myth of the lone inventor.

The books also deals with barriers to innovation, the main one’s being negative responses like “this will never work” and the fact that managers tend to stifle innovation. “Ideas need nurturing and are grown, not manufactured, which suggests that idea shortages are self-inflicted. It doesn’t take a genius to recognize that ideas will always be easier to find if they’re not shot down on sight.” Managers can be toxic to new ideas. “high experience and confidence make people the greatest resisters to new ideas as they have the most to lose.” Maybe this is why some innovators leave large organizations and start their own companies. The good news is that managers can nurture innovation by protecting and shepherding them. Framing ideas can help solve them – especially when thinking through how the innovation will solve a practical need.

The book concludes by trying to get beyond the hype of which there is more today than any time in history. Innovators of the past did not read books about innovation or attend TED conferences, although some may have been inspired by other innovators in history. Innovations requires the willingness to take risks, working with teams, get beyond the obsession with epiphany, and get beyond the work innovation.

In conclusion, he gives five suggestions:

  1. Pick a project and start doing something
  2. Forget innovation: focus on being good
  3. If you work with others, you need leadership and trust
  4. If you work with others and things are not going well, make the team smaller
  5. Be happy about interesting “mistakes.”

The book also has suggestions for creative thinking hacks.

Overall, the book not only debunks many myths about innovation but also provides practical advice. For me the chapter on how managers can either inhibit or promote innovation. This is where innovation either grows or dies. For healthcare, the opportunities for innovation are everywhere in the care process if they are not blocked by managers or oppressive policies and oversight. The book does not address adequately the use of internet tools in promoting innovative ideas. These include Twitter, blogs,

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Innovation and Social Media at HIMSS

February 11, 2011

HIMSS emphasis on social media has grown every year. From a humble meeting of bloggers at a bar several years ago, to a social media center on the exhibit floor this year. Quite a change. I have the privilege of presenting 3 times at the social media center – providers panel on Monday, a solo presentation,   Social Media in Health IT—Rapid Dissemination and Collaboration, and a meet the bloggers on Wednesday another Meet the Bloggers panel. Plan to join the tweet-up as well and tweet throughout using the #HIMSS11 hash tag.

On the innovation front, I helped plan the HIT X.O track which is new to HIMSS this year. Thinking from the future will stretch everyone’s thinking. Covering everything from futuristic mobile apps to personalize medicine in the next 10 years and military technology in healthcare, each session looks to be exciting.

See you there!

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WebMD vs. MayoClinic.com – Reliable Medical Information

February 6, 2011

In an article in the New York Times Magazine today, Virginia Heffernen discusses a Prescription of Fear. She contrasts the WebMD approach to health information with that of MayoClinic.com, opposing what she sees at a for-profit website with major funding from drug companies on the one hand with a respected non-profit medical institution on the other.  In comparing the two sites on the topic of headache, for one thing, she uses a Google search to find content on the sites rather than the sites own search engine and then claims that one has advertising and drives uses to prescription usage while the other does not.

I tested this with the term Fibromyalgia. It turns out that both sites display an add from Pfizer on the landing page, MayoClinic also has ads by Google but WebMD did not. WebMD on its chapter on treatment includes 3 brand name drugs but also recommends physical therapy and medical marijuana.  MayoClinic recommends lifestyle and home remedies, alternative medicine and coping and support but nothing about drug therapy.

MayoClinic advertising policy states that  ”we accept advertising and sponsorship under strict guidelines” but does not state whether they have any control over the Google ads appearing on their pages. WebMD’s policy is extensive and states “under no circumstances will WebMD’s acceptance of any Advertisement be considered an endorsement of the product(s) and/or service(s).” Both sites are HON Code certified and WebMD also has eTrust and URAC shields.

So there may be something to WebMD suggesting drug treatment more often that MayoClinic, but the article fails to mention that MayoClinic.com is supported by advertising and in some cases has more ads per page than WebMD.

It should be noted that other medical institutions do not use advertising but provide reliable medical information from their own sources such as, Duke and Cleveland Clinic .

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Innovation – Segway Style

February 2, 2011

Yesterday I attend the Cleveland Clinic Ideas for Tomorrow presentation by Dean Kamen inventor of the Segway and much more. His current company is called DEKA Research & Development Corporation and has several inventions to meet his goals of saving the planet and solving big problems with simple solutions. Many of these have implications for health but also he has created FIRST, an education initiative to help students become inventors and scientists. Perhaps more important that his inventions is the way that he thinks about innovation and invention. Part of this is within the mission of FIRST, “exciting mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership.”  He stated, “innovation is mostly about surprises” and lives his life expecting the unexpected.  He complained about government regulation which inhibits innovation and has created his own country on an island off Connecticut as an act of rebellion. He scoffs at naysayers and believes in solving global problems. We need more of this in healthcare.

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