It’s Time to Redesign Medical Data

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In the TEDMED talk below, Thomas Goetz looks at medical data, making a bold call to redesign it and get more insight from it. Your medical chart: it’s hard to access, impossible to read — and full of information that could make you healthier if you just knew how to use it.

The “four questions that every patient should ask” mentioned at the end of this talk could easily be applied to a business scenario. Goetz is talking about medicine, but his focus on owning your data is solid, whether that data is about your renal health or your revenue. Equally relevant is his breakdown of what sort of approach provides the best motivation. Though he draws his specific example from dentistry, the general revelations he makes could also apply to marketing. [Outlined by Capterra]



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  1. So this is a different approach. This is an approach that has been developed by a couple researchers at Dartmouth Medical School, Lisa Schwartz and Steven Woloshin. And they created this thing called the drug facts box. They took inspiration from, of all things, Cap n Crunch. They went to the nutritional information box and saw that what works for cereal, works for our food, actually helps people understand what s in their food. God forbid we should use that same standard that we make Cap n Crunch live by and bring it to drug companies. So let me just walk through this quickly. It says very clearly what the drug is for, specifically who it is good for, so you can start to personalize your understanding of whether the information is relevant to you or whether the drug is relevant to you. You can understand exactly what the benefits are. It isn t this kind of vague promise that it s going to work no matter what, but you get the statistics for how effective it is. And finally, you understand what those choices are. You can start to unpack the choices involved because of the side effects. Every time you take a drug, you re walking into a possible side effect. So it spells those out in very clean terms, and that works.