Opening speaker is Kevin Leonard, Dept of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto and Founder, Patient Destiny. Through Patient Destiny (www.patientdestiny.com), Dr. Leonard is working to expand the voice of the consumer in healthcare – the patient. Kevin believes that the 1st step is to develop an effective eHealth system where patients have access to advance health informatics tools.
I have known Kevin for about five years and have been impressed by both his passion and his determination to effect change. I share his view that patients need to be more engaged in their care and that information technology is a key ingredient to this engagement.
Highlights from Kevin’s opening presentation includes:
- Through his direct experience with the healthcare system, Kevin has experienced first hand the difficulty in getting access to his personal health information.
- Doesn’t feel that we have made nearly the progress that we should in deploying eHealth solutions.
- eHealth – only way that patients can get access to their personal health information in any meaningful way.
- Patient Destiny – three main objectives
- Raise awareness of the power eHealth
- Start pilot projects that get patients engaged in their own health through access to health information
- Performing benefits evaluation
- Shares his battle with Crohn’s disease as a case study of how the health system works today and could be improved through use of information technology.
- Diagnosed with Crohn’s disease, Kevin has twenty healthcare providers and therefore many records
- Patients today are capable of lowering demand on the healthcare system by helping them to manage their care
- 70% to 80% of healthcare costs related to treating chronically patients
- 30% to 40% has at least one chronic disease
- Even small improvement in treating chronically ill patients can drive significant cost savings
- Need more evidence re: impact of patients having access to their personal health information
- Interoperability is key to realizing full benefits of eHealth – need to be able to create a comprehensive patient record with information from disparate systems
- No one cares more about health outcomes than the patient! Need to better engage this group.
- Patients need to be represented by a formal organization and this organization must be invited to the table to dialog with the other organized stakeholders.