Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Health 2.0 - an impromptu discussion

One of the most interesting sessions of the conference was an un-conference session. This is an impromptu session created by people with a common interest. In this case it was Health 2.0. Participants were international and also included a representative from the BlueCross BlueShield Association, Discovery Health (the web site offshoot of Discovery Channel) and the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda. The discussion focused around how to connect people with information that has been filtered and been subjected to peer review. Organizations like the National Institutes of Health are conservative in their approach. However, they are interested in funding organizations that could push forward the creation of this valuable information base. One suggestion was whether the voice mashup demonstration concept could be used to provide virtual consulting and peer review of content. This could use the eBay/Amazon style reputation mechanisms and Amazon Mechanical Turk to provide services. These could be paid services to provide a financial reward to participants. The question is whether providing this type of service could reduce the pressure on doctor's offices and present an attractive cost-benefit trade-off. Could an online consultation be accomplished more cost effectively than a visit to a doctor's office?

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