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  • Jim Trounson

Healthcare Innovators Aren't Being Constrained by Perceived Limits

Earlier this month I attended three days of TEDMED--the TED Talks’ medical variant. Its theme of “limitless” recalibrated my thinking of what is possible. For example, I didn’t know:

  • Radiologists will be replaced by Artificial Intelligence (AI).

  • We could improve patient flow and save $140 billion by applying AI techniques such as the restaurants’ Open Table.

  • One’s zip code is the best predictor of one’s health.

  • American medicine spends $.38 to collect every $1.

  • 80% of heroin addicts started with Opioids.

  • 41% of transgender youth are suicidal.

  • Virtual Reality (VR) surgical training will become as prevalent as the airlines’ use of simulators for pilot training.

  • Male contraception is the new, new thing with cell phones monitoring sperm counts.

  • Teenage pregnancies are expected to increase as driverless cars become more prevalent (think about that).

I attended the 82 presentations shrinking the space between “what is” and “what if”.

  • “Not in my backyard” was flipped in Seattle where middle class homeowners are building tiny houses in their own backyards and adopting a person who was chronically homeless.

  • A solution (drones) found a problem to solve (getting perishable life-saving blood to remote villages in Rwanda). A central blood bank receives an urgent order for a particular blood type, launches it on a 36” drone that flies through most any kind of weather to above the rural medical facility, the doctor receives a text message to step outside and catch the blood which is parachuting down, the drone then returns to base.

I’m excited about this brave new world of medicine and healthcare delivery. As MedMan has been opining for 40 years that there’s got to be a better way to run medical clinics. The human condition will continue to improve as we healthcare innovators think limitless.

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