By Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA
I’m delighted to participate in the Cayman Islands National Healthcare 20/20 Conference, and the topic of my presentation is “The rise of digital technology for better patient engagement.” For further details you may read the Press Release (provided by the 20/20 Healthcare Conference) below.
20/20 Healthcare Conference to discuss how patients can be better informed
The use of mobile devices and the internet to help provide a greater level of patient care is a subject that will be looked at in detail at the national 20/20 Healthcare Conference, which will be taking place October 18-20, 2012 at The Ritz-Carlton. In addition, the audience will also hear about ways in which healthcare providers can provide the highest quality care for patients and innovations in the way these quality levels can be measured.
Following this year’s conference theme ‘Patient-Centred Care: Achieving Quality Outcomes’, award-winning broadcast journalist, Barbara Ficarra, RN, BSN, MPA who is a leading voice in healthcare social media, will be analyzing the overall topic of the rise of digital technology for better patient engagement. Dr Lawrence Friedman is Professor of Pediatrics and Medicine at the University of California, San Diego and he will also be presenting at the conference, looking specifically at defining quality outcomes from the patient, provider and payer perspective, as well as looking at some of the innovations that are driving quality improvements and quality measurement of healthcare services.
Ms. Ficarra, who is President of Barbara Ficarra Productions, says that the concept of digital technology is a powerful tool in the provision of a modern healthcare service. “Digital technology is patient-centric and consumer driven,” she says. “The internet via social networking platforms, mHealth and telemedicine are changing the health care landscape.”
Digital technology includes the concept of ‘mHealth’ or mobile health, which means the practice of medicine and public health supported by mobile devices – such as mobile phones, tablet computers and PDAs – for health services and information. It also includes the use of health apps, gaming and telemedicine.
Ms. Ficarra, who is a freelance writer, medical blogger, speaker, health educator and a featured writer for The Huffington Post, is on the front lines of health care as a registered nurse. She is an administrative supervisor for at a large university medical center and covers multiple medical and surgical units, critical care, oncology, cardiology, psychiatric unit, women’s and children’s services, and emergency trauma department.
Dr. Friedman says that healthcare and how it is provided is evolving now more rapidly than any other time in history.
“Scientific knowledge is progressing at a pace that challenges providers to keep up with all the latest discoveries. From the patient perspective there has never been so much medical information so readily and easily accessible. As knowledge changes and patients have more information at their disposal, payers, including insurance companies and government agencies, are also trying to understand the model of healthcare delivery that provides the best care at the best “value” for themselves and for the populations they cover,” he explains.
Dr. Friedman, whose main responsibility includes medical directorship of a large faculty practice and oversight of ambulatory quality and safety, managed care and ambulatory clinical practices, says that at the center of all these themes is the goal of providing the best quality of health care in a manner that is best suited for the individual patients and their circumstances.
Jennifer Ahearn, Chief Officer in the Ministry of Health, Environment, Youth, Sports & Culture, says that conference delegates will be able to glean the very latest information on such crucial aspects of healthcare provision.
“We see the future of healthcare in the Cayman Islands as one that puts the patient at the center of the equation. Dr. Friedman and Ms. Ficarra, who are both leading experts in their field, will be speaking on subjects that will help us reach our goals when it comes to defining Cayman’s healthcare policy. We are extremely grateful to them for their commitment to present at this year’s 20/20 Healthcare Conference,” she says.
In conjunction with the Ministry of Health, other sponsors include Premium Plus sponsor Tenet Health, Health Services Authority, Tower Marketing, Chrissie Tomlinson Memorial Hospital, 21st Century Oncology, Johns Hopkins Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, Cerner, BritCay, Jackson Memorial International, University of California-San Diego Health System, Simplifi, LIME, Sunshine Suites, Cayman Airways and the Caymanian Compass.
The conference is free and open to the public and everybody who is interested in healthcare in the Cayman Islands is encouraged to attend and enjoy the exciting topics and lively discussion that will be presented. For more information or to register visit Healthcareconference.ky.