2.0 Is the Wrong Number in Healthcare 2.0

A patient having his blood pressure taken by a...

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Is healthcare important. Is it one of the most critical industries? If it is, why is it so behind the project referred to as ‘Web 2.0’? Why should healthcare be so exceptional an industry as to be stuck in another century?

I think we’ll have to abandon the numeric system when referring to new versions of the Web, especially when formulating applications within the healthcare industry. There’s really no ‘Healthcare 1.0’ (whatever it was, it was a dissappointment). So why bother with a 2.0? Why not just settle with Healthcare?

The goal of healthcare is healthcare, not social media. The current system in the United States is so horribly deranged that we we need enormous investments to heal it. Internet technologies and social networking applications for patients and professinals certainly will help in the area of management. But it won’t travel too far in revamping infrastructure.

I’d love to see more healthcare facilities provide more intelligent and usable online interfaces with their communities. Right now, that’s the kind of servicing Web 2.0 can offer, such as:

  • A process for updating the community (via blogs)
  • A process for giving voice to the community
  • Updated information on patient care (e.g. online discharge instructions)
  • A portal for building support groups for patients and family members

The list can go on. HIPAA certainly gets in the way and will need to be repealed or revamped in a more intelligent way. Dignity shouldn’t be a pretext for industrial secrecy. Web 2.0 won’t change that. Good old fashioned political rage can.

Web 2.0 won’t get to healthcare. A whole new iteration needs to be integrated. Unfortunately, Healthcare 1.0 is going to be here for longer than it should. Sadly, we might even see Healthcare 0.5 coming our way. Or -2.0 if we keep screwing things up.

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