I've just returned from this year's Health 2.0 conference feeling energized by all of the new ways technology can help us to communicate important health information. While Health 2.0 is not HIV-specific, it brings together critical information and resources for us. I was amazed to see that the tools and technology, along with the opportunities and challenges have grown so quickly since last year's conference.
Some of the country's leading healthcare and technology experts such as Aneesh Chopra, Assistant to the President & Chief Technology Officer, Office of Science & Technology Policy, new product demoers, clinicians, patient-advocates, and many others, spoke about how the Web and information technology can help improve healthcare. They spoke about enabling patients to manage their own health, helping them connect to and communicate with their clinicians and their peers, and how technology can help patients, caregivers, and clinicians search for and locate important health information.
To help illustrate many of the themes I heard throughout Health 2.0, I created a Wordle, otherwise known as a âtagâ or âwordâ âcloudâ, to provide a visual representation of what I was hearing:
These themes mirror the themes we hear in the HIV community when we talk about how to best meet diverse sets of needs. While innovative tools such as those showcased at Health 2.0 can help us connect and communicate, we must always put peoples' needs first and make sure we're using the right tools in the right places at the right times (which is why we've dedicated our last two posts to revisiting new media strategy). There are many opportunities to bring the HIV community to the table in this discussion around technology and healthcare — for example, many of the patient health records demoed at the conference provide opportunities for patient education around topics such as HIV. For me, the conference raised larger questions about how we in the HIV community can connect to the larger dialogue around health communications and helping individuals take charge of their health and access the information and resources they need.
Interested in learning more about the conference? If so, check out the conversation on Twitter using hash tag #health2con along with videos of some of the presentations at the conference on ICyou.com.