Health 2.0 Exchange Connects Consumer Ehealth Innovators with Beacon Communities

Pierce Graham-Jones | September 26, 2011

This past weekend, the Beacon Community Program headed to the 5th Annual Health 2.0 Conference, a leading gathering of people working to leverage the power of consumer technology to drive health care improvement. As part of the proceedings, the Health 2.0 organizers hosted the first-ever “Beacon Innovation Exchange.” Over the course of an open five-hour meeting, six of the Beacon Communities met and exchanged ideas with more than 50 consumer ehealth technology companies. They had some coordination and facilitation help from three organizations who make it their job to understand this industry – Health 2.0, West Wireless Health Institute, and the Center for Technology and Aging – as well as us here at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

We are excited about the potential for this event. The Beacon Communities are on the cutting edge of health care delivery system improvement, with new processes and resources specifically designed to engage individuals and better manage chronic conditions outside of the delivery system. They thereby offer some of the best opportunities in the country for testing and taking advantage of new technology that bridges the gap between the individual and the health care system.

So what was the meeting? In an open forum on Health 2.0’s website, the six participating Beacon Communities developed a ‘needs statement’ that describes one or more challenges that could be addressed through the appropriate use of health information technology, in critical clinical areas such as diabetes care, chronic heart failure, and pediatric care. Any companies interested then had the opportunity to respond to these challenges by filling out an online form that showed how their technology could help. At the meeting on Sunday, we continued the conversations about Beacon challenges and the fit of consumer ehealth technology, through panels, expert discussion tables, and one-on-one meetings. You can read more about the meeting and the Beacon’s ‘needs statements’ here: http://www.health2con.com/conferences/san-francisco-2011/beacon-communityhealth-2-0-matchmaking-event/ Exit Disclaimer

There are thousands of consumer ehealth technology companies innovating today, finding more consumer-friendly ways to engage individuals with their health.  The Beacons are working on the other side of the same coin, changing the delivery system to provide more individual-centered care. But collaboration between the two sides is not easy, as both are in the middle of developing new approaches to health care. Through the Beacon Innovation Exchange, and through future initiatives coming out of the Beacon Program, we are hoping to create a forum for further and faster collaboration.

* The Health 2.0 Beacon Innovation Exchange is open to all interested parties that registered on Health 2.0’s website and does not endorse or provide preference to any organization or entity.