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Health Care Innovation: Did Any Gen Yer Shape The Proposed Health Care Reform Legislation?

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on January 6, 2010

I’m a big fan of Hello Health, which provides a new social media platform for delivering health care in Brooklyn and its founder Jay Parkinson. Jay has recently launched a health innovation consulting firm and a blog. In one item, he criticizes the health care reform package moving through Congress as. basically, an atavistic antique. It solidifies corporate control over individual health care rather than empower people to design their own. I totally agree.

Here is what Jay says about the structure of Hello Health. It’s a Gen Y, social media approach to getting health care.

“I started a practice in NYC on September 24, 2007:

patients would visit my website
see my Google calendar
choose a time and input their symptoms
my iphone would alert me
I would make a house call
they’d pay me via paypal
we’d follow up by email, IM, or videochat

This concept became Hello Health via a partnership with Myca so other doctors could practice this way. Hello Health is a mixture of secure social network and electronic medical record that enables doctors and patients to connect both in their office and online via email, IM, and video chat.”

Does this sound good to you, as it does to me? Does it sound like the present, if not the future? Is there anything in the forthcoming health care legislation that promotes delivery of health care service via social media? Let me know.

And yes, Brooklyn is now the center of innovation in America—first music, now health care. Innovation is socio-tech (are we moving this discussion forward Don?).

Reader Comments

Andrei Timoshenko

January 6, 2010 6:50 PM

I actually do not see how any of this is "health care service via social media" or an example of innovation. This is using new technologies to do old tasks. To make an analogy, car an innovation. Using a car instead of a horse to get from point A to point B is not an innovation - it is an obvious application of that innovation that increases efficiency.

To wit:
Old technology: phone book listing
New technology: web page

Old technology: phone and receptionist
New technology: google calendar and iphone

Old technology: house call
New technology: house call
In 50 years much of this will likely be done remotely, but it would still be the same task, done with slightly different tools...

Old technology: cash
New technology: paypal

Old technology: phone
New technology: internet communication

We never stop incrementally improving the daily tools we use. This is but an example. No special legislative provisions needed.

On a side note, not doing what Mr Parkinson (initially) did, and actually using social media for healthcare strikes me as a terrible idea. What benefits would it offer me, the occasional patient? What would it even look like?

nat Findlay

January 6, 2010 8:40 PM

Hi Wayne, Thanks for the post.
Im the CEO of Myca. Would love to meet up and show you the new practice in the West Village and introduce you to some hello health doctors.
Let me know?
Best regards,


January 7, 2010 12:39 PM

Andrei - I think the adoption of new tech into old processes does count as process innovation - wherein the new process is more effective / efficient than the existing one.

What I'm interested in knowing more is whether the people responsible for adoption of technology in governments across the globe are championing the use of social media / citizen voice in policy formulation.

Are there some stellar examples of how citizens are co-creating policy with governments at a local, state or national level.

We're part of a design-led innovation firm called Quicksand in India and are in the process of creating a project wherein policy is designed through citizen inputs.

New York Yankees Hats

April 1, 2011 1:34 AM

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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