About open health

The future of health is open

The stories we share here are inspired by health innovation from around the globe. We bring to life how technology, transparency, information-sharing, and community-building are playing a vital role in the ways people are thinking about health.

Health transparency

We are beginning to see greater transparency in healthcare, as a result of efforts to improve  general health around the world. Examples of this include:

  • Greater clarity in medical costs
  • Better and more prominent nutritional information at restaurants and on food packaging
  • Including the patient as a partner in his/her own care
  • Improving information-sharing among physicians and medical records systems

Health is becoming social

The connectivity we all enjoy today allows for quick and easy sharing of health information. We are building communities and social networks that are focused on health and medicine. Many people—for example, those with chronic conditions that might have previously curtailed their social interaction—are able to go online to find others who share their health concerns.  They—and everyone else—can reach out to peers for health information and advice. And despite the occasional episode of internet-based hypochondria (You probably don't really have a brain tumor. Or a guinea worm.), better informed patients can make better decisions.

These now-forming networks also allow doctors and individuals to connect and share knowledge much more quickly. And smart mobile health apps can further advance the way we communicate with health providers.

Participate

You can join the open health conversation.

Have you seen transparency, collaboration, and community efforts to improve health where you live? Have you heard about it happening elsewhere? Let us know.

Not sure where to start? Check out the list of topic ideas below, and see if something strikes your fancy.

Topic ideas

  • Transparency in patient health records data
  • Who owns the patient data in electronic health records—the software provider, the doctor, or the patient?
  • Does meaningful use mean more collaboration in care?
  • Ways to collaborate with and better involve patients as active participants in their own care
  • Health record exchange - Compelling doctors to collaborate and share records with each other
  • The pharmaceutical industry - collaborative clinical trials, drug patents and exclusivity,  the generic-versus-name-brand dilemma
  • OpenNotes project
  • Blue Button project
  • Aneesh Chopra's visit to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and opening data
  • New bill advocating transparency in medical insurance rate changes
  • Greater cost transparency, i.e., doctor visits, procedures, even simple tests so we can make more informed medical decisions.
  • One procedure can cost one sum in one place and a vastly different sum somewhere else.
  • mHealth and eHealth provide easier access and help shrink the health disparity gap
  • Social health (building health networks in social media)
  • Open data in healthcare

Is there anything you think is important that we've forgotten? Let us know. Got a great idea for an article? Submit it through our convenient webform.