Wednesday, November 23, 2011

EndoGoddess App To Go To Paris!

I am soooooo excited to be asked to speak in Paris in May 2012 at Doctors 2.0 on how social media, web 2.0, and mobile applications are impacting healthcare. New communities, new services, new tools, mobile apps are extending the reach of professionals and patients, raising both opportunities and challenges which will be discussed....from the doctor and patient point of view.

These 10 questions and more will be covered at Doctors 2.0 in 2012:
What do we know about e-patient experiences and Doctors 2.0?
Which healthcare social media campaigns by pharma, government, and hospitals work?
Where are we with regulatory and legal?
What do new patient communities look like? What is new with PatientsLikeMe? How are their European counterparts developing?
What is the Quantified Self movement and how does it impact chronic disease?
What is new in online consultation?
Which mobile applications are popular with professionals and also patients?
How do online communities engage physicians in Emerging Markets, North America, Europe?
How is Med Ed changing as a result of Mobile Apps, Social Media and online communities?
Should you be considering 3D video or Serious Games?

You can also see my video promo here too:

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Taking Risks: Entrepreneurship

While attending BlogWorld Expo in LA this week, I have been busy speaking but mainly listening. As is typical at conferences, I find most of my inspirations from the patient voices. Speaking to diabetes blogger Kerri Sparling of Six Until Me was a huge pleasure:

My brain is cluttered right now with inspiration and questions, but I would like to share one thought on what I was asked about the most: leaving academic medicine and becoming an entrepreneur. Many reasons played into my decision:

1. Timing. The combination of the rising epatient movement, the increase of social media allowing new voices in the collective whole to be heard, the passing of patient-centered Affordable Care Act legislation and the consequential restructuring of payment incentives toward quality rather than quantity of services, the approachability of technology and development, the enthusiasm behind investments in related healthcare startups despite otherwise dismal economic growth in other sectors, the upcoming expected necessicity for pharma to embrace new business models upon patent expirations, financial incentives rewarding embracement of electronic health records with a consequential more positive change in adoption culture, and the baseline independent popularity of mobile phones among doctors and patients...it is the perfect storm for consumer-based mobile health solutions to be embraced and paid for and effective.

2. Passion. I really began all of my social media and mobile health app developing endeavors as a hobby. I often found myself up late into the wee hours of the night before a clinic working on various aspects of my early mobile health work without realizing how late it was. I truly love working on mobile health, and still often lose track of time!

3. Business Planning. After speaking to MANY people in the mobile health space, I became convinced that I was not the only one that had enthusiasm for the power of mobile health to improve health outcomes and that indeed, making a living was possible. And so, I began the journey of planning.

4. Courage. My patients gave me the courage to pursue this journey by continually asking me when they could download the EndoGoddess app. However, it was also the courage that my patients showed me everyday in their will to live their lives well despite diabetes that also inspired me. Their enthusiasm and grace gave me the courage to leave academic medicine and work on finishing the app full time so that they could indeed download it.

In conclusion, now 6 months into this journey, I am happy, challenged, thrilled, and fulfilled everyday. This is a life that certainly has risks but as Amber Naslund, social media strategy expert and author of the awesome book The Now Revolution, said in her Blogworld keynote after answering the same question: 'don't be afraid to take risks people, it's called living.' I am truly living. :)

Friday, November 4, 2011

A New Project: My Diabetes Digital Magazine

Sitting in a hospital waiting room recently while helping a friend navigate through the healthcare system, I became acutely aware of the fact that there are very few magazine options for young people with diabetes. Furthermore, publishing is changing rapidly and becoming more digital and mobile focused.

I would love to see a young (18-40yo) diabetes magazine on the iPhone's newsstand so that I can read this in the waiting room (or when I'm at the hair salon, grocery store, airport, etc). Thus, I have teamed up with comprehensive creative media company Mills James to begin creating content for such a magazine. Here is a sneak peak of the platform we call 'folio' showing how ads within the magazine can be interactive:

I am hoping that you will be able to see the first issue Spring 2012. We will be making both a female-focused issue and a male-focused issue so that lifestyle topics affected by diabetes such as fashion, hobbies, relationships are covered from each perspective accordingly. Stay tuned for more information over the next few months. The magazine is a subscription rather than a prescription for living GREAT with diabetes!!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

A Personal Story

Stories are the first way we learn as children. So, I am going to share my personal story in the hopes that a lesson is learned from reading this post. I lost my sweet English Springer Spaniel, Sadie, 2 weeks ago. I was lucky enough to have her with me for almost 15 years. We were inseparable and as connected as two souls can be.

Despite speaking frequently about the power of online communities to help with healing and being able to recite related behavioral theories, it was hard for me to write a message on the English Springer Spaniel Lovers Facebook Page. I don't like being vulnerable, and asking for support feels vulnerable: what if it makes my pain worse? What if I'm really crazy to miss my dog as much as I do?

However, using my mobile phone gave me the courage to write on the English Springer Spaniel Lovers Facebook Page. It felt intimate and safe to use my mobile phone to do so...perhaps because I associate my phone so closely with texting my lovely friends and family. And, just like the theories and studies I often recite in my speeches about healthcare and the power of online communities, I felt the overwhelming power of support from a community of peers who assured me I wasn't crazy to feel like I did. The support didn't make my pain disappear, but it replaced my pain with a feeling of connectedness to other dog lovers who honored my sweet Sadie through their support.

The Moral of the Story: I am thankful that my mobile phone gave me the courage to join an online support group and to begin to heal. This experience inspires me to continue further community development within the EndoGoddess app to allow users with diabetes to more easily gain that courage to heal their pain too. And yes, you guessed it: I wrote this piece using my mobile phone! :)