In my course in which I also describe what doctors should do when patients add them as friends on Facebook, we cover topics that are related to the everyday lives of physicians from the digital perspective. A few days ago, Joel Topf, nephrologist, told me on Twitter that he used my method when a patient added him on Facebook:
If the profile is personal, I reject the request and send a private message to the patients explaining why I did that: this is a personal account, while our relationship is professional. They always understand and accept my decision.
Then I asked Joel whether it worked out well.
My method is based on purely natural communication and transparent reasoning. This is why it works.
Salvatora Laconesi is an Italian man who recently found out he has brain cancer. Being a good coder, he cracked the code of his medical records and made the data open source so then anyone can analyze it (researchers, medical professionals, artists, etc.). This is the approach ePatient Dave regularly talks about: Let Patients Help!
Here is what happened to him:
I have a brain cancer.
I went to get my digital medical records.
Sadly they were in a closed, proprietary format.
I cracked them.
Shared them with everyone.
2 of them already replied.
Grab the information about my disease, if you want, and give me a CURE: create a video, an artwork, a map, a text, a poem, a game, or try to find a solution for my health problem.
As a physician and genomics researcher, I’m a man of data so I loved to see the approach of Dan Hon regarding type 2 diabetes and the data he acquired every day about himself which helped him get better.
He resolved to do something about it. Being a geek, he decided to measure and quantify the health factors (weight, body fat, activity, blood sugar) that contribute to diabetes. He’s lost 30 lbs since the new year, and has gotten pretty far into reversing his diabetes. He’s detailed his experience with various kinds of monitoring tools, and written a bit of a rant about what needs to be fixed in order to make this easy for anyone with a diabetes diagnosis to follow in his footsteps.
Social media is changing how medicine is practiced and healthcare is delivered. Patients, doctors, communication or even time management, everything is changing, except one thing: medical education. We need a revolution!
When a UK physician wanted to visit Hungary every week just to attend my university course focusing on social media and medicine, I decided it’s time to make this course global.
Today, The Social MEDia Course goes live with 16 flash Prezis, exciting tests, badges and achievements. Enjoy and have fun while learning! Medical students, physicians and even patients, everyone is welcome to take the course which is, of course, for free.
Here is a video about the course (and also a Prezi).
Katie McCurdy is an information-specialist so it wasn’t that surprising when she decided to design infographics showing and describing her medical history with plenty of details about her chronic condition (myasthenia gravis).
So for this week’s office visit, I have prepared a visual timeline, an infographic, if you will, that I will print and take with me to my visit. This timeline charts the progress of my Myasthenia Gravis since I was 13 – not only the hard facts like the medications I was taking at the time, but the way I *felt* during those times and the degree of weakness I was experiencing. Overlaid is the progression of my stomach problems over my lifetime, including the points in time when I took antibiotics. Laying these waveform-like patterns on top of one another reveals that often my MG and my stomach problems were involved in a dance of sorts, taking steep dives simultaneously.
This is an absolutely timely topic and I’ve just recently come across pretty relevant news and articles focusing on whether patients should get access to source codes and data provided by their implantable devices. A few examples:
Lawyer Karen Sandler’s heart condition means she needs a pacemaker-defibrillator to avoid sudden death, so she has one simple question: what software does it run?
Yet it turns out that it’s impossible for her to see and understand the technology that’s being installed into her own body and upon which her life depends. Regulatory authorities don’t see or review the software either.