First, this morning I finished the newest button of Scienceroll, Personalized Medicine which I created to make it easier for you to track the changes of this interesting field.
Second, I’ve recently joined The Physician Genome Partnership whose mission is “To leverage the intellectual power of thousands of physicians in order to interpret the human genome.” I try to be useful for them. Dr. Stephen J. Peroutka has done an excellent job with this community site and with one of the best slideshows I’ve ever seen.
Not only will Web 2.0 technology be useful for physicians keeping current, but it will also help physicians maintain and develop better relationships with their patients.
Insurance and organizational/political changes in American medicine will continue to fragment traditional methods of healthcare delivery, by increasing the financial burdens on both patients and physicians. This tendency can be counteracted by providing greater informational value to patients, in an accessible form. Web 2.0 developments make this possible more easily than ever before.
Sharing approved medical websites, publicizing a practice’s (or the provider’s) strengths and interests, forwarding links to thought provoking articles and videos — and getting similar feedback from your patients, to share all around — these are just a few examples of what Web 2.0 can do to build a dynamic sense of community in a medical practice, to promote and stabilize it beyond the few minutes a year that patients typically contact their physicians.
In essence, in situations like America’s, where what used to be assumed (wide ranging, largely paid for healthcare) may no longer be, patients will need to assume more of their own costs, and thus will become more selective — more choosy “consumers” — of their healthcare resources. Plus, more patients, especially younger ones, will be doing their research on MD’s and hospitals online.
Put that together, and MD’s who are Web 2.0 savvy will have a distinct edge over their non-Internet based colleagues, both in recruiting new patients AND retaining existing ones. The change is slow, but has definitely started.
It proves that your comments are always welcome!