Disruption, Not Destruction Will Save Medicine

Scott Mace, for HealthLeaders Media , June 12, 2012

Back when I wrote about technology strictly for an IT audience, we journalists dreaded the so-called airline magazine article effect, where a promising new technology was touted. CEOs rushed into immature technology based on those articles, and often got burned.

My heart goes out to doctors who are encountering patients who expect too much too soon based on reading Topol's book. It is the equivalent, albeit highly informed and documented, of one of those airline magazine articles.

To those who simply say it's the new taking over from the old, I'm 54 years old and still learning many new tricks. So are many of the 50-something healthcare executives and doctors I talk to weekly here at HealthLeaders. We don't need to be replaced by the digerati generation in order for healthcare to be fixed.

We are part of the solution, not part of the problem. There are bad doctors, bad executives, and bad technologies. But we the experienced ones don't need to be lined up in front of some metaphorical wrecking ball.

I was born with esophageal astresia, a condition where the esophagus ends in a blind-ended pouch rather than normally connecting to the stomach. When I was three days old, a surgeon whose name I do not know at the University of Michigan Medical School saved my life. So I guess I'm biased when I say that the U.S. healthcare system, with all its faults, doesn't need creative destruction. But it does need to be shook up, and that process is underway.

See Also:

Disruptive Healthcare Innovations Trump SCOTUS Worries

Scott Mace is senior technology editor at HealthLeaders Media.
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1 comments on "Disruption, Not Destruction Will Save Medicine"

civisisus (6/12/2012 at 3:26 PM)
"The fact that productivity gains remained largely flat through a period of vast investment in technology improvements meant that predicting such gains solely on the basis of Moore's Law, and the proliferation of sensors everywhere, is a risky business." no major objections with the thrust of your essay, Scott, but the above-quoted bit stuck out awkwardly. This thing called the internet suggests that declaring productivity gains "largely flat" is risky business, too, unless you're going to define what "largely flat" means to you: Historical productivity growth (US BLS) http://www.bls.gov/lpc/prodybar.htm




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