A little story

Sitting here at a Healthcare conference: MedCity ENGAGE!blog_fax

ENGAGE is the one place that gets the entire ecosystem together to best understand the patient and consumer engagement trends that sit at the core of healthcare innovation and reform. You’ll hear from payers, providers, policymakers, health IT and beyond; we’ve gathered together the most innovative thinking to offer and discuss the latest strategies, ideas and solutions to one of healthcare’s greatest challenges.


Just heard inspirational talk from Aaron Sklar (former IDEO design guru now at Healthagen) – talking about how technology should fade into the background and how we can use design to engage better! Well, that was preceded by Merck’s Sachin Jain who discussed some powerful patient stories – showing how we have data we don’t use but should be used. I’ve simplified – but essentially thesis was that we have a lot of technology already and need to make better use of data and technology.

So I wanted to share my personal ‘circular’ / ‘technology’ story:


  • Daughter had overnight sleep study at hospital


  • Doctor calls from hospital to inform me about test results (called home phone, I’m traveling)
  • Home voicemail transcribed and sent to me via email
  • I called back the number listed by the doctor. Got robo circle for the department, voicemail transcription garbled doctor name.
  • I called back the number listed by the voicemail – managed to get Doctor directly.
  • Chatted about results and next steps.
  • Emailed another doctor on our team to discuss more options for treatment.
  • Remembered I forgot to ask about other specifics in the report.


  • Emailed our local pediatrician’s office, who has direct connection to hospital
  • Nurse said she could get report for me
  • Nurse asked for my fax number
  • Nurse faxes to husband
  • Husband scans in the document
  • I read the document while traveling and also forward to my sister (who is ER doctor for her opinions)

I’m thinking this could have been easier. I have a patient portal with my hospital . . . Sigh. One day, I see it possible that we can connect technology to save money, resources and unnecessary waste in the healthcare system.

In the meantime, I will work my hardest to get best care for my daughters’ health.

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