Month: March 2018

No comments exist

Outcomes Rocket Podcast - Quality Improvement with David Williams

The Quality Improvement and Cost Reduction Challenge with David Williams, President of Health Business Group

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:18] Outcomes rocket listeners welcome back once again to the Outcomes Rocket where we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. Hey I want to invite you to go to rate and review what you thought about today's podcast. And without further ado I want to welcome our amazing guest. His name is David Williams. He's the president of health care business group member of Board of Directors at Clerio vision and he's got a track record of success in health care. Among those things a blog that he's been writing for the last 12 years and other companies that he's been involved with but wanted to extend the invitation to David to fill in any of the gaps in that introduction. David. welcome to the podcast.

David Williams: [00:01:03] Hey thanks, it's good to be here. I'm not often called amazing so I assume that setting up some zinger questions for later when she soften me up but you handled it pretty well in the health business group is a strategy consulting firm been around for for quite a while it worked throughout healthcare and life sciences. I write a blog I am on the board of the clerio of vision as you mentioned and also a couple of other companies very Cradd and Madugalle and so keep them busy.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:27] Awesome. Now you definitely have reason to be. And you know just your leadership track record in this field and thought leadership as well. So David what is it that got you into health care to begin with.

David Williams: [00:01:38] I something I always had an interest in even growing up my father worked in public health as highway safety researcher and I did have a summer job one year at a V.A. hospital programming a mini computer. So I had some some practice of programming in that clinical decision support. Way back when in the early 80s so it was that was I guess how I got into it. And that's pretty cool yeah. And then when I was in business school I came out of there in 94 and so it was just after Hillary Care had fallen by the wayside. But the private sector had gotten the message that it better innovate and try to do some new and different things. So when I went to Boston Consulting Group even though it was a general firm I did a lot of work in the health care practice there.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:20] Awesome. So really all roads lead to health care for you and you just stayed strong with it.

David Williams: [00:02:24] I mean I guess you know what I was at BCG I did some other things too including work in the automotive space and paper and all that and it was kind of fun but I thought health care was really interesting and also socially redeeming so it's really at the end of the day impacting life and death which is different than in some of the other field. So when I left Boston Consulting Group pictures back in 2001 I just decided to continue in that field and never left.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:49] Love it. DAVID And what would you say. There's a lot going on in healthcare today out of all the things that are going on right now in your perspective. David what would you say. Hot topic that every leader needs to be focused on.

David Williams: [00:03:01] As you say it's a little hard to pin it down so I'll give you a broad one which is just overall costs. The costs are just totally unsustainable. We sometimes forget about how the high costs of health care are driving out other spending priorities both on the public side and the private side. So you see that things like education and infrastructure are really driven out by Medicare and Medicaid spending from a government level and then on the private side it's much the same people trying to figure out how they can afford their copays on their medication even if they are insured. So cost is really the biggest area I would say.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:35] And David as we as we think about costs. No doubt it's you know three point two trillion dollars 20 percent of GDP. It's a big issue like how do we tackle that like what would you say. As far as say health care leaders right. What do we need to be thinking about as it relates to costs. And maybe if you can drive down the main pillars of provider industry and payer.

David Williams: [00:03:58] Well I think that there are a couple of approaches I would take to it. One is to look at the overall level of value based care. So that's something that certainly had been introduced probably during the Obama administration even before then things like pay for performance and that really does bring everybody together including the providers including the payers including the patient. And I would say that at the end of the day you have to have a value based system that's rewarding you know value over volume the same time. Under the current administration a lot of that work has has slowed down quite a bit and those that felt that they needed to make the jump from volume to value and we're trying to figure it out and we're sort of ready to roll with it have decided. Well I think we're going to step back for a bit because the fee for service era is going to continue for a while and certainly the first HHS secretary in this administration Dr. Price was focused on pink Yucie for service was just great. So I think eventually we need to reaccelerate that value based approach. And I think that we will. So that's happe while that's happening or while it's not happening. There are some other things that can be done and some of those are a little bit more specific. So thinking about how in other industries technologies are used to reduce costs while improving quality there's actually no contradict in between cost and quality. From that from that standpoint and a couple of the companies that I've been involved with that I can talk about publicly like cardiac technologies which was just sold to ARCI earlier in December and clarity of vision both due that they are improving quality but they're also reducing costs by an order of magnitude in many cases both in the areas of clinical trial core laboratories and then in vision correction. So some of those technologies can come in as well. One problem you do see in healthcare is that you'll have something that may look like it's a lower cost and it might be on a unit basis like going to a retail clinic instead of going to the emergency room. But if you go to the retail clinic instead of staying home and you still go to the emergency room when you go to the emergency room it's just additive. So that's one of the tricky things in health care.

Saul Marquez: [00:06:04] That's really interesting. And so the examples that you provided are both industry and just from the perspective of the folks listening it just seems like as a provider just with the changes. Just hard to get to that point of value based care. We are in a value base fee for service based system and it seems like maybe a lot of the onus is getting put on companies to own that.

David Williams: [00:06:27] Well what happened before is that Medicare is such a big elephant that you really have to pay attention to Medicare so I remember back 15 years or so ago Harvard Pilgrim Health Care was trying to do some innovative things related to you know what at the time would've been called Pay for performance or some alternative payment models and what they found is that the hospitals they were dealing with even though Harvard program was supposedly the top health insurer in the country they didn't have that much influence over the hospitals the hospital would take whatever they did and just convert it into Medicare equivalents and they lost all the incentives and that behavior change they were trying to get as a result. So with Medicare setting the tone with things like a CEOs and bundled payments it provides private health plans at least with the opportunity to sort of follow in their footsteps and so I think what you're seeing now is that even if the feds are backing off from some of that the private health plans the commercial plans Medicare Advantage plans are still continuing down that path and they can continue to make progress as long as Medicare doesn't completely undercut them.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:34] Yeah that's a really interesting perspective. I think it's a good good way of framing it and really the way that it's ticking. So if you had to say your group David had to focus on one thing. What is 2018 looking like for health care.

David Williams: [00:07:48] I think that 2018 unfortunately might be looking like 2017. So that's a little bit of a grim prospect. So I do think what will happen is that.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:57] What you mean by that. What was 2017 like are you just saying there's not many changes coming.

David Williams: [00:08:01] I'm saying that from a healthcare policy perspective which is where I spend some of my time not a lot really happened. It was more about undermining things that were already there. Slinging totally and arrows trying to undermine or repeal as opposed to building anything new even one area that you might have thought was going to get some attention which was drug pricing really didn't. So I mean from a health care policy perspective I don't see a lot of great things happening. And I also think that with the tax bill it may shortly become law that's likely to sort of take money out of the system without making a lot of good impact. You'll see more organizations that are suffering financially. So that's kind of what I expect in 2018. I think especially as an election year we can't really expect any bipartisanship to occur. So I don't have high hopes on the policy side. My hopes are more that we're going to see things like analytics and big data that have been brewing for a while you know start to make a practical impact. That's what I would point to. You'll see things like that. Nothing from a policy standpoint.

Saul Marquez: [00:09:03] For sure. Yeah. Thanks for sharing that. It just seems to be that consistent thing that nags at all these companies that have amazing ideas that wanna move move the industry forward policy just can't seem to keep up with the innovations kind of like with Amazon. You know they want to get their drones up there but our antiquated air space policies don't allow us to get there.

David Williams: [00:09:25] I think you're going to see Amazon you pointed them for another reason. But certainly that's an organization that is starting to enter health care and could have some impacts as soon as 2018. You already see impacts on it in that it's it's driving others to take action like the CBS Aetna merger proposal. I would put in that category of the defense against Amazon.

Saul Marquez: [00:09:45] Yeah really interesting. So let's shift here. David can you share with the listeners a time or an example of you guys have done a lot and you guys have done a lot of really good things so out of the many that you have in mind a story when you guys improved outcomes for a client that you've worked with.

David Williams: [00:10:02] Maybe I'll take something a little bit off the beaten track so you know we work with businesses mostly but we also work with nonprofit organizations and I don't mean just nonprofit hospitals which is just another way of not paying taxes but there are effectively businesses that are being but we do know like it is coming.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:21] I love it.

David Williams: [00:10:21] Exactly so we work with some major philanthropic foundations and we often help them on what they call sustainability for some of their multistakeholder nonprofit organizations some in the area of regional health improvement collaboratives and sustainability really means how can they survive without having being completely grant supported. So what we do differently is we bring a real business perspective to it. So we say even though you're a you're a not for profit and you're a collaborative group. You still need to think about things like your value proposition customer service return on investment and bikes getting some of those business concepts across without undermining the soul of the organizations. We've been able to help some of these regional centres really get on their feet and be successful and sustainable for the long term.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:08] And I think that's really great. You know just supporting the people that have a really strong mission and are in it for the greater good. That's maybe the path that your father laid out for you and you continue to carry it forward as a public servant. So kudos to you guys for doing that.

David Williams: [00:11:24] So I don't want to take it too far I'll give you another example that's a little bit more mercenary. So what the other thing that I do as a board member of privately owned companies is try to incorporate the grand perspective but also be able to navigate between their private equity investors who are very financially driven and the company executives who often focus heavily on the on the day to day. So sometimes it's about uniting two companies that may have kind of suspicious of one another but actually are very complimentary and that's something that I worked on recently with two clinical trial core lab companies that I was involved with and they and they came together in a way that I think is going to be very strong and powerful for the customers and the market.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:05] So let's dive into that a little bit deeper David because I do believe that this happens too often we're oftentimes in a position where we consider another group potentially a foe when in reality they're a partner. In the end it hurts us it hurts the organization and it hurts the people that we serve in health care. Can you give us an example of how you help people bridge that and how you get them to work together.

David Williams: [00:12:28] Well you're pointing to something that I think is is important which is that people that are very you know kind of close rivals may actually have more in common and be able to work together. So I guess I saw this most exhibited actually by my younger brothers who are identical twins. They used to beat the heck out of each other in the house they just paulownia each other day it day and night and they both actually pretty good wrestlers but what you got. And that's I think the ultimate example of somebody that is very close to another one an identical twin. When they got out in the world if anybody would poke one or the other of them or bother me even as their older brother they would be just completely bonded and working together so in a very strong way that would make somebody regret having picked on one of them because they're definitely getting getting two of them. That's something that maybe I learned at home not from my father but from my dad my brothers and help companies to think not exactly in those terms but to say you know you're such major rivals and you're always going up against one another. You know what are ways that you can potentially come together and be even stronger now.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:26] And I love that idea. And the analogy is wonderful if you had to pull out one thing what recommendation do you give people. What we're looking to do that better.

David Williams: [00:13:35] I would say first of all you know take a deep breath and listen to somebody that is more of an observer of the industry or you than a customer or an investor and try to understand their perspective and look at it fresh and you know even forget the name of the other organization that you're dealing with for a minute while you while you do that.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:52] I love it. What a great tip and listeners too often. We're all guilty of this. We get stuck in our head about what we believe about what we say we know. But truly what our perspective of the situation a person or group is and let's heed David's advice. You know let's let's step away from it and get some fresh perspective because we may be missing some amazing opportunities of collaboration and even just a bigger way to fulfill our mission that we're all in here for which is improving outcomes and being able to do it profitably. David you know you're sharing some really great tips. Really appreciate it. What would you say to date in the decades that you've been in health care is one of your proudest moments.

David Williams: [00:14:33] Well I would say One example is things that are not done. You know we talk about doing business strategy and strategy of course is about what you are going to do. But it's also about what you're not going to do. Yes. Well so we do a lot of work with companies that are making acquisitions and oftentimes somebody will really fall in love with an acquisition and they're hiring advisers. But you know they've got a bias toward doing the deal and you tell them it isn't good you know you're not going to be that popular. So we're working with one company and the chairman of that company was very hot on a particular acquisition opportunity really thought up with it and he was also described to me as a very mercurial and forceful type of guy mercurial I'd say it was an understatement if that's possible for that to be an understatement. And he put out that allow I'll give you an example that he put a lot of pressure on the management team and specifically on me I remember when we started to sort of question the deal he he threatened that not only was he not going to pay our bill he was going to send us a bill which I thought was which is really something so we stood our ground and recommended against the deal and eventually it didn't happen. And a few months later it was sold for about 40 percent less than what a client was prepared to pay for it and that it actually went downhill from there after it was acquired. So I heard later from. Yeah I heard later from the CFO of that client that that was all the things we'd done with that company which we've worked with for you know several years that this was the most valuable one because it really helped them avoid a disaster. So I guess I'm proud of something that we did we didn't do that we couldn't somebody else not to do.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:03] I think that's so awesome. So congratulations on standing your ground. You know a lot of times it's tough to do that especially when somebody threatens you like that. And so that speaks to your courage and to your vision. And then secondly the message to the listeners strategy is not always about what you're going to do it's what you're not going to do as well. So let's consider that let's take this example of this lesson that David shared with us and this potentially catastrophic financial decision that could have been made was avoided because of courage and because I've seen that. So a really wonderful example. David thanks for sharing that. Sure. So tell us about an exciting project that you're working on today.

David Williams: [00:16:43] Well one of the things I love about my work is really work only on exciting projects so.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:50] So everything.

David Williams: [00:16:51] Everything is everything everything is wonderful you know from the from the Lego movie right. That's one thing that I would say that we see a lot of that seems to be a theme right now is clients of ours that have some sort of technology our software That are interested in trying to expand into services. And it's both a way for the customers. It's a business in and of itself when you're looking to accelerate growth but it's also a way for the customers to get value out of the products that they are that they're purchasing. You find that you have a product that has a great return on investment and yet how come you're not getting that type of growth that the penetration of the price realization that you would expect. And a lot of that can be remedied actually with services so that's sort of a generally exciting one. I would say if you asked me for a very specific one that we're working right now with a company that has it does clinical trials and they've got a particular medical device they use in the trials that they spent a lot of effort on the device and now what they're finding is that those who are leading the clinical trials are saying hey this would be great to have in my everyday medical practice. So we're evaluating whether this can be used in more routine health care settings as well. I can't be too specific about it but that's that would be the one that's most exciting.

Saul Marquez: [00:18:04] I get it. Yeah that's pretty interesting just putting the lens on seeing the applications and the other example that you gave established companies looking to just get additional growth services tend to be that way to do it. And so if you are a company executive listening to this I definitely encourage you to check out the show notes David will be able to share his company info contact info and potentially reach out to him because he's definitely got some pretty good wins under his belt as it relates to helping companies diversify and increase their penetration in the market. So David let's dive into this part of the episode. You and I are building a medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine today. It is the 101 or the ABC of David Williams And so we're going to write a syllabus here four questions lightning round style and then we'll follow it up with a book that you recommend to the listeners ready.

David Williams: [00:19:02] I have as ready as I'm going to be I think.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:05] I love it you're quick on your feet so I know this will go well. What's the best way to improve health care outcomes.

David Williams: [00:19:11] Oddly I think it's actually to encourage people to stay away from the doctor and take good care of themselves both from sort of a preventive and wellness basis and then even when something's happening to them that is medically necessary they should be thinking and not just become passive within the system.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:26] Love it. What is the biggest mistake or pitfall to avoid.

David Williams: [00:19:29] What I think is really about trying too heavily on medications to the you know every medication is going to have some side effects. Now certainly people may need medications. Nothing wrong with that but sort of the idea of a pill for every ill and physicians that may look at things that way not always working in the favor of the patient. And I think in particular try to avoid getting addicted to opioids which is all too common unfortunately.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:52] And that's for sure and this is definitely a hot topic for me too David. Just being able to understand that a pill only takes care of a symptom and oftentimes not the actual problems are diving into what is the actual problem rather than just masking it with a pill. Love that. How do you stay relevant as an organization despite constant change.

David Williams: [00:20:12] Yeah that is a hard one. We have a very seasoned team which is a better way than saying that we're all tottering but that's one reason we're not doing the video here. But we really tout our experience. We know we're doing we've seen a lot of things. And so the biggest danger is really about staying open to new ideas. And there's a couple of ways that we do it. One I've already mentioned serving on boards of companies that are doing really innovative and exciting things. A lot of those are run by younger innovators people really taking some interesting risks and really pushing the envelope. And the second way is as you do I write a blog and do podcasts with entrepreneurs so I'm always being pitched ideas about new companies and speaking with CEOs entrepreneurs who are doing something that's interesting so try to be open to these ideas but also put myself in a place where I'm going to be confronted with new ideas new companies new approaches.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:07] Great tip and what's the one area of focus that should drive everything else in your organization.

David Williams: [00:21:12] I mean in our own organization we have an insistence on trying to do really great and nearly perfect work. So I'd say you know they say don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good. We don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good but we do let it be the enemy of major growth and expansion we like to keep a very tight focus on what we're doing and know most of the people that work at health business group have been working here for 10 or more years so that's how we do it.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:37] It speaks to the culture. People don't stay a decade or more. If the culture does not fit I know this wasn't one of the questions but what would you say a tip you'd give to the leaders listening to this show on building culture.

David Williams: [00:21:49] Certainly you know things start from the top and just as in raising children if you're going to behave a certain way you can't expect people all of a sudden to behave in a different manner so they're setting the example of being consistent. Those are important things and then you kind of build it from there.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:06] Love it. What book would you recommend to the listeners here on the syllabus. David.

David Williams: [00:22:09] Well at the risk of dating myself a little bit. One of my favorite classics and one that people don't always know about is called up Parkinson's Law and the subtitle is other studies and administration. You might have Parkinson's Law be familiar with Parkinson's blood cells. So Parkinson's Law as work expands solaced is still the time available for its completion. And this book is really full of pithy observations on administration and about how organizations become dysfunctional as they grow and evolve so they have chapters on things like directors and councils. The annual general meeting how people are selected and I would say just one word of caution that there's no bad words in there but some of the modern readers may find it a bit offensive that it's coming from including some uncensored social observations from a 1950s British perspective. But there's there's some amazing principles to be derived especially about how large organizations work.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:00] Love it. Love it. Yeah. And you know I have found this to be so true. David if you give yourself six months to do it you'll take six months or so two months somehow you'll figure out how to get it in two months.

David Williams: [00:23:13] It was telling him that yeah that's it. So now you know doing something finally you didn't expect to learn anything from this process.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:19] I every time every time especially for you David so I'm glad you recommended that book to us and listeners don't worry about jotting that down just go to outcomesrocket/davidw. That's David Williams. David W. and you're going to find all the show notes as well as this mini syllabus that we just got put together for you links to the book links to his company and his blog and all the things that he's up to David. Time flies when you're having fun. We're here to the end. So if you can please just share a closing thought with the listeners and then the best place where they can get a hold of you.

David Williams: [00:23:51] Ok well a closing thought is that despite what I said about 2018 not looking that rosy is real life is what you make of it so let's say everybody out there listen and prove me wrong by making it great. A good way to find me is that or if you like Twitter I'm @healthbizblog and you can also look at the health business blog. Those are all ways that you'll get to me and with the common name of David Williams. You'll find a lot of us out there so make sure you're looking at the one that's involved in healthcare.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:18] David it's been such a pleasure listeners. Be sure to reach out to David stay in touch with them. Follow him. He's up to some really amazing things. David just want to say thanks again for making the time to be with us.

David Williams: [00:24:29] Saul. it's my pleasure.

: [00:24:33] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

Parkinson's Law, and Other Studies in Administration

The Best Way To Contact David:

Mentioned Link/s:

Episode Sponsors:

Healthcare Podcast

Outcomes Rocket Podcast - Quality Improvement with David Williams


No comments exist

How To Optimize Clinical Trials with Artificial Intelligence with Wout Brusselaers, CEO at Deep 6 AI

How To Optimize Clinical Trials with Artificial Intelligence with Wout Brusselaers, CEO at Deep 6 AI

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:19] Outcomes Rocket listeners. Welcome back once again to the outcomes rocket while we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. I thank you for tuning in and I invite you to go to where you could check out today's episode again. You loved it or you could check out our other episodes and leave us a rating and review as well as subscribe. We love hearing from you and can't wait to hear what you think. Without further ado, I have our outstanding guests. His name is Wout Brusselaers. He is the founder and CEO at Deep 6 AI. He's a strategic leader an influential change agent who persistently develops new opportunities to innovate grow and improve efficiency through rigorous analysis out-of-the-box thinking and a hands on operational management. He's done some really interesting things as been mentioned as top 100 most disruptive companies in the world. 2017 as well as won many awards including the accelerator enterprise and smart data category award done a lot. And so what I want to do is open up the microphone for Wout to fill in any of the gaps in the intro. Wout. Welcome to the podcast my friend.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:01:37] Thank you all. Glad to be here.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:39] It's a pleasure to have you. And so I wanted to ask you you know you're at Deep 6 AI. And you were at Health 2.0. We got a chance to learn a little bit more about what you guys were up to what got you into the healthcare side of things to begin with.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:01:55] Good question. And I wish I had a really nice suppy story about like passing away and hugging stuff like that in reality as befits a day tickled pony we were all that were analytical about it. We started our company dealing with the U.S. intelligence community. So we were in a different field altogether dealing with some of the biggest intelligence agencies and some of our clients. There are things going great until a little over a year ago actually almost two years ago no we had a projects and we had an awful lot of projects and then they mentioned to us like you know it's the next step for you guys to do is to hire a retired four star general estimate knocking on doors and you're going to grow fantastically. And so me and my co-founder we looked at each other like hiring a retired four star general becoming like a lobbyist to deal with the government never does just told us that solar companies that we knew that what we had been building was something that had much wider applicability. We were basically using accommodation of various routines to deal with massive amounts of high velocity high variety and high complexity data right to Variety data. Yes we felt there's a lot of opportunity to bring it into healthcare. It was a combination of us not willing to become our governments or shall I say clients or whatever rights are and feeling like we had a tool that had proved itself in arguably the most complex and difficult data environment in the world to deal with right intelligences look at all the data all the time in real time. Right. If they got the true from the false. If we can do that we can probably do something in healthcare as well which is every vertical. So we spoke to a couple of people in healthcare and got some really good feedback built a very early prototype of what we could do based on our platform. And then we applied to the TechStars healthcare accelerator got acceptance and from then we were all in.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:38] That is so cool. And what's interesting. Wout. Thanks for the background in the story about that. You find yourself in these moments and listeners we all find ourselves in these moments where you're faced with making a decision a decision between what you stand for a decision between doing something that you love and doing something that you have to and without. Take us back to that moment and tell us a little bit more about the thought process. The feeling everything that led to you just finally saying this is what we're going to do.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:04:07] I would say the key variable in that decision we're all honestly a couple of shots of vodka.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:15] I love it.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:04:19] I wish I had a better to read a good story before I do these things but that's great me. My co-founder we got this all for like the next level is going to be better called to do this whole thing and both of us kind of stepped out of the slick. I don't feel good about this. Neither do I. Are you going to go back and say yes are we going to go back. I say maybe because Rebecca said no. So we already had to looking at health similar opportunities we had some thoughts about it and we kind of took the garbos Salak dealt to Schultes. Are we sure about this that a lot of shots. Are we sure about this or that we felt like sufficiently inebriated and capacitate it's Do not worry about the consequences and go back and say look this is it.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:55] Oh my goodness. Well you know that's pretty funny. And you just did. You got into the state where you just said OK this deep down inside if we're going to make this happen we're going to make something happen that feels good to us. And oftentimes what I feel like as leaders we spend too much time in our head and those shots of vodka potentially you know there's other ways to get there. That's one way which good for you. And there's other ways to do that as well. And so leaders the message that Wout is giving to us is that you have to make sure that you not only spend time in your head but you spend time in your heart when making big decisions like that. Would you say sum that up while, Wout.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:05:33] Yeah absolutely. I think you have to trust your gut to some extent right. And you have to be willing to come to a place where you can kind of balance the strategic with the opportunistic and sometimes you feel like you know what this is a great opportunity but strategically it doesn't really fit in the long term plan it doesn't make me feel good. And so you say no two things sometimes. The other thing like I said you know this is not exactly our strategy but the opportunity is great and I can still see how eventually it'll fold into our strategy. And then you can say yes two things but it's kind of having that broad framework that's is flexible and dynamic but it's kind of a compass. And like you said there's a moral component. There is a strategic approach. There's a lot of things that go into it.

Saul Marquez: [00:06:08] Yeah for sure. Not awesome. I appreciate that and appreciate the candid answer. What would you say. So today you know you guys how many years have you been in healthcare now. We're not second year second year so in the two years that you've spent in healthcare what would you say. The one thing as it relates to AI are anything that you feel in general healthcare leaders need to be thinking about.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:06:31] There's a lot of a lot of insights or thoughts I've been thinking about that a lot. The one thing that is honestly the most appropriate to us and to some extent Selsor because it's a business that we are running right so I'm going to focus on that is I believe that C-level or V.P level executives in healthcare should really think about how to optimize clinical trial and clinical research as a C-level opportunity for a hospital. And what I mean by that is that if you are leading a large healthcare organization today right you are taking care of patients you're doing Population Health to do so many things you should understand that one of the big is one of the big tools you have is to use your patient database and your talent on site to further clinical research. The reasons why right as well it is a great revenue opportunity with fee for service coming under pressure right you can no longer make more money by prescribing more MRI's or CTE scans. Yes you are going to either cut down or find other ways to monetize your knowhow and research is probably one of the best ways there too. Every time that you engage in research every trial that you conduct on your sides is an opportunity for your patients get access to cutting edge care. So you're opening up the door for drugs or treatments that are only available to your patients. Right. And it will probably take it over five to 10 years before going to be all the markets but that have oftentimes proven in earlier phase trials like Phase 1 and 2 that they are better than many older commercial drugs out there today and that's specifically through pharmacology drugs. There's about 800 oncology drugs that are now at various stages of trials that have been shown to her better than commercially available drugs. But the only excess you can give to patients for whom this could be life or death decision right is yet to local trials. So again you have the military capacity or aspect of this. You have the patient outcomes engagement's unsatisfaction. And then thirdly an organization that does a lot of clinical trials opens itself up to cutting edge thinking about what is the next wave of treatments right. How can we think more how can we learn more from what we do everyday. It allows you to build institutional knowledge base and basically disseminate all this thinking from the frontier of medicine. And it allows you to attract talent that is interested in that and is forward leading. I just feel like if you combine all of that it should be a no brainer for sure. Resealable executive spent more time thinking about how you can leverage your site to do more clinical research.

Saul Marquez: [00:08:45] That is a really interesting thought and as we approach the new age of healthcare it's important that the listeners you know if you are a an executive at a hospital you think about out of the box things to create new revenue streams especially when we've got this value for service coming instead of fee for service. Wout. What would you say right now the percentage of hospitals actually taking advantage of this type of leverage.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:09:12] Today it's mostly the academic medical centers right that are big on research because it's basically in their cultural DNA which is so about 10 percent I'd say roughly 600 are doing a lot of research. But if you look at the numbers in recent years where you see the biggest growth in bringing new trials and of course the benefit from the law of small numbers right. If you have zero trust to start with if you add one or two it's a great percentage wise increase but if you look at that there's a lot of growth in smaller hospitals and clinics in either community hospitals that realize that they have access to patients to a demographic of patients that typically don't frequents academic medical centers. If you think about Ali you have Cedar Sinai. A very well-known and very prestigious accounting center. But most of the patients that gold are fairly or a certain demographic are fairly well-off they can afford to go there or their insurance can't afford to send them there. There are so many older patients of an interesting background who get to afford to go to Hugel to community hospitals but they are typically the patients that the pharma companies are thinking about the most. A lot of basically long term diseases right the lifestyle diseases just cardiovascular visas are typically frequenting these populations more than the more affluent patients at the AMCs.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:24] Yeah that's very fascinating. A unique idea for share and appreciate you sharing that I think it's very unique. Haven't heard that one on the on the show before you know we typically run into things like population how are chronic disease management or you know the usual suspects. But this is definitely an out-of-the-box thoughts. Appreciate you mentioning that.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:10:45] Thank you. I would call it like democratizing access to clinical trials right. Opening it up to some of the underrepresented populations and demographics because those are the people who want to sell to eventually. And if you can actually do trials of your drugs will only get better.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:57] Totally totally. Yeah because the base sample of people that you're trying them onto is also very right. You can measure for different effects on different people.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:11:07] Absolutely and that is the basic premise of precision medicine right. You're going to get really into the specific patient and if you kind of represented patients when you're testing or building those new treatments you're never going to be all together.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:17] Totally, hey Wout. Give us an example of how your company and you and your and what you guys are doing have created improved outcomes.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:11:25] So it depends on your definition of outcomes in what we do which is basically applying artificial intelligence to a wide variety of clinical data right to find and match patients clinical trials much faster an outcome that we measure is how many patients can you find for trials and Holland as a ticket to find us patients. If you have a target say for a trial and I'm going to use a real life case right now that we did at executer Sinai we had a principal investigator API who was doing a study for a biomarker for non small cell lung cancer. She had spent 12 months to find 23 patients for her trial so she could test whether by working groups publish the results and try to commercialize this which which is a great step forward. So after 12 months she only had 23 patients where we met with her the very first time she shared her inclusion and exclusion criteria. What do these patients need to have and general to have for them to be of them to a trial. She shared those with us. Eight minutes later we had entered them in our software we had run our program against clinical data of the patient database that we did just had we had found 58 matching patients for a trial including the 23 the jury recruited beforehand. So we literally took an effort that had taken over many many bolds dealt to a couple of minutes.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:37] That's impressive. And after validating the patients everybody met the mark they were qualified yes.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:12:44] Of the 50 yes. Basically what we did is we were told more than 58 we probably had somewhere in the 80s or something. And as you went through them our software what it does is it takes a first step at algorithmically matching patients to trials. So say look this is what the right things should be about. And then we give you a tool to basically have a human user validated. So it's a synergistic or a Sentara approach. You you the machine intelligence directs to go to the best results.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:09] Very cool. I love that. That is a result that is an outcome. And So yeah that's really interesting. And so again I go back to provider leaders if you're thinking about going this route it just makes so much sense to if you don't have the expertise and the ear wanting that break in is something new. Why not partner with a company like Wout, to help you get there faster and more efficiently. That's a really cool cool thought. Can you give us an example of a time when you've had a setback or a failure and what you learned from that.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:13:43] Today are going to be longer than that.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:45] Yeah it could have. Yeah I'm kidding. Yeah exactly.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:13:50] Well if you're in a startup it's a rollercoaster ride right. Yes. Up and down. And you're always chasing your next high your next success. So there's always something we do extensive postmortems and we do extensive what I call like a b testing what works what doesn't work. One of the early things that did work is what we wanted to do originally going to market was using our platform which is basically that using a clinical data to find patients and learn more about patients much faster right. Our original purpose had been to build a platform that uses that for political decision support. So what we were going to do is basically say we use our software to build a patient's graph. Every patient data that we see we take all of the data from different sources that EMR pathology reports Juber registry's devices basically anything we can get our hands on. We dig we unified it into a graph. So patient becomes like an adult dimensional vector with all the symptoms diseases outcomes treatments genomics by which all the data points on there. Once you have a patient represented as a grass right you can search and match that and compare that to other patients. So all the data that you have about a patient becomes analyzable whereas today most of the data is in documents it's in written notes and traditional stroke and I'll deal with that right. So we felt like we had a very powerful platform that we were looking for the right use case. And we thought once you represent the patient as a graph you can go to your doctor a lot like Hey so based on the graph that I have of you there are over 5000 patients that look almost the same as you do on the dimensions that are really important the symptoms that brought you into the basal those that are 5 missions over the last a year or something that's that's physicians like me have seen these were the diagnosis that were there. These were the outcomes right, or the treatments that were prescribed for a diagnosis these were the outcome so they can have a very statistical approach to how do other patients respond to things very similar to you. We felt like it was almost like a crystal ball where you can see your own future. So six months from now I can expect this if I take this treatment or that if I take a lot of treatments we thought that was brilliant which goes to show that we didn't know that much about healthcare. Because when we started talking to a lot of physicians and executives at the healthcare organization said look you know that's great but that's science fiction that's going to take too long to validate if you're a startup you don't have the time to play around with this takes you 18 months to sell to an organization and you probably will run out of cash before you do that. So a major pivot for us was to move from local decision support and land on something that had a much shorter sale cycle is still very effective and high for an organization which is a clinical trials matching.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:15] Beautiful man that's so great. And I love that you guys are just very serious very very tuned in to what's needed. And you know what I find Wout is an entrepreneur side of things. It's that tenacity to be able to to say all right this is not working this sale cycles way too long. They are why is not there for the organization. I got to pivot and a lot of people get stuck there. What advice would you give to the entrepreneurs listening to this looking to make an impact in healthcare to make a shift like you guys did.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:16:47] Well there's a couple of things going into that. One thing is you cannot afford to fail right. If you want to fulfill very fast so you can move on in startups right. The typical thing people say time is money for startups is the opposite. Money is time. You only have a limited amount of dollars and that only buys you short amount of time so you can feed the team. Basically if you do all that you only have that amount of time you know that you have to hit certain milestones before you get run out of money which means you have to learn to sell and other things. Thinking back from that right if by X I'm going to run out of money which means I have to do a sale by way and that means buy sell psycho's this year. Basically you have to be ruthless about selecting the options that are going to work. You have to be facing reality. Is this working. It's not working. Am I losing time. What I basically tell our team now is the cult of daily accountability is what I'm doing today going in the right direction. If it's not working right and sometimes it takes a while it takes two to three weeks or more before you know everydays to measure some kind of progress. Yes and if you started to see that evidence is accumulating that's pointed to the wrong direction right are saying this is not working. Don't hesitate to pull the plug and try something else.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:50] That is on point. Wout. And so listeners are an entrepreneur take that to heart. You got to be very tuned in. You got to be ruthless you've got to be in tune with the timelines and be sure to deliver on those timelines and if you get negative feedback fail fast and make it happen. Great words of wisdom there wow. Thanks for sharing that. A little bit on every of the listeners here on the outcomes rocket says pretty pretty great. Appreciate you doing that. Tell us a little bit more about a proud moment that you've had so you walked to one of the setbacks. Tell us about a proud leadership moment in medicine for you.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:18:28] There are quite a few. Luckily because we have a strong team and I feel like I can take pride in their accomplishments which means I don't have to do much myself. One of the problems we had was at South by Southwest last year when one we won the enterprise data world which was great. We were basically we met with Vice President Joe Biden which would not be an experience that was beyond my expectations. I tend to be a bit of a cynic and think like oh yeah fine we'll be doing Joe Biden whatever but when you actually meet a guy and he talks passionately about what he stands for in the moonshot effort to cure cancer I want to be super impressed. So there was all of that but I'm probably the most important moment was when I got off a stage at South by Southwest where I was talking about or connect one cancer which was one of the events and I had actually a cancer survivor who just came up to me and told me like I love what you're doing what you are doing really makes a difference for people like me. And this was a highly educated very very impressive woman who was a stage 3 cancer survivor. Her husband wasn't oncologist she was highly informed that everything which she told me I am trying to get into clinical trial because I know that is the way for me to beat cancer. And what I do today is I go to websites where I type in my type of cancer that I have with even simple genetic information. That's what I get back in terms of matching trials. I got a hundred and forty trials that I might be eligible for. Which means that I have to sift through a hundred and forty trials which means in many cases they sent me to a website were asked to take a survey or asked to be on a phone call or actually have to go and meet with a trust coordinator and then they start deciding whether I'm eligible adults sort of takes me many many months to each adult and then differently. We get all the roads in distress because of this with our software tree or fourplex you will know in minutes whether you're eligible for trial or not which for these people saves you so much time and allows you to focus where your time is spent. That was really troubled when she'd basically validated our idea that this would make a difference. Until then it was a business right and it's really for us like we were doing this. To make this. But when you meet a person legs we were completely blown away.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:30] Yeah yeah it just gives it that much more meaning and validation that it's actually on point with what the market needs.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:20:37] Absolutely. And also with what. What can be really be a life or death situation for individual person which is incredible in a way. I mean if you're a physician probably use it every day you can make a difference in a person's life. If you're a startup it's a privilege to be able to do that. Totally. And to me it's a great motivation for the entire team. I mean everybody was was when I mentioned at oyer and right away I spoke about this first of all we also won the award. We met with US President Joe Biden but that was like to listen to that. It was all about this person we met where he said You guys are making a difference for us.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:08] Yeah that's highly impactful highly impactful and that's awesome man. Congratulations on that. On that whole that was a great day wasn't it.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:21:16] It was amazing. It's hard. If that's such a step it's like how are you going to stop that. Like I mean I got a lot of work to do now actually. Wow.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:26] Tell us a little bit more about a project that you're focused on today.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:21:30] We have a lot of different projects that we're doing. There are what I called the research projects and the technology projects. There are more like the use case projects one of the things that we're trying to do right now is to basically create a let's call it a marketplace right which is a public platform where all the stakeholders in clinical trials which means hospitals that are sites that conduct trials. Sponsors are pharma companies medical device companies that are running the trials right CROI which are facilitators under subcritical trials but also patients really build a platform and all of those interact where they can basically find out about trials or find out about sites or find out about sponsors or about patients so they can all share their data. And that's a big stumbling block of mismatching patients the trials and spending many months to do that matchmaking we will to make sure that becomes completely effortless and it happens in minutes or a matter of days. Will that really crush that whole timeline by bringing everybody on the same platform.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:25] That is awesome man. That is really interesting and I'm definitely going to be tuning into the things that you guys are up to because that's awesome. And listeners here and after the lightning round with the syllabus that we're going to do you're going to be able to wow is going to share whereas Web site is best placed to follow what they're doing. So Wout, we're here getting to the end. So appreciate your working with us to keep this super interesting. Right now we're going to do is I have four questions for you. Lightning round style. We're going to build a syllabus and what it takes to be successful in medicine. It's the 101 or the ABC of Wout Brusselaers. And so what. I've got four questions for you. First one is here. What's the best way to improve health care outcomes.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:23:10] Looking at data. One of the big issues that you have today is that there is no big data on healthcare. You have massive amounts of little data that are all locked and fragmented the individual files one of the reasons why they are locked and fragmented is because most of the data is unstructured and it has VHI and they're using. You can weed out the VHI you can bring all that data together. And like I said before every time you treat one patient you can learn from millions of other patients have gone through the same thing. I think that is going to be a game changer.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:37] What is the biggest mistake or pitfall to avoid.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:23:40] In general I think being complacent thinking that's the way the things are happening today is the way to should be.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:46] How do you stay relevant as an organization. Despite constant change allowing yourself to change as well. Finally what's one area of focus that should drive everything else in your company.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:23:55] Good question. It's hard to boil it down to one thing because I'm thinking it's a metric for us in a way. It's user growth. I feel like if we are convincing our users if we find people are signing up and are buying into what we're doing and are growing we must be doing something right. All the other feel all the other things fall into place if we get that right.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:15] Love it man. Beautiful. What book would you recommend to the listeners. Wout

Wout Brusselaers: [00:24:18] That's a hard sell because I change my favorite book almost every week.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:23] Give us that week's book.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:24:25] This book a book as I've been incredibly impressed with have actually is a book called a second hand time by a Russian alter called Svetlana Alexievich she won the Nobel Prize in Literature years ago and what she has basically done for years she has been chronicling the daily reactions of people or of all those generations of people as they transition from communism to today's hyper capitalism in Russia. And you really see the old line of people that were completely sold on one idea and one ideal of a society and how they felt betrayed by that or in some cases validated by that and how they had to deal with change. It's really interesting on a personal level but also as a startup it talks about change and chasing her ideas as a human and at the most macro level. She calls herself a chronicler of the soul which is kind of what exaggeration. It's a very intelligent and very in-depth analysis of just human beings and everything I think it's an amazing book.

Saul Marquez: [00:25:20] Love it. What a great recommendation. And so listeners don't worry about writing any of this down go to that's w o u t like Shout and you'll be able to find all of the show notes as well as a link to this book. A link to his company and all of the amazing things that we've talked about about where here to the end. If you can just share a closing thought with the listeners and the best place where they can get a hold of you.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:25:48] Well first of all thank you for listening. If anybody is listening apart from the two of us I hope they will. They are with me. That's awesome. Please seek us out right. Please come and see if we're making good on our promises of what was already given to our users. Go to full of us subscribe to our newsletter and keep motivating us. We are able to witness today. We are all in the same boat we're all trying to get more better healthcare to people faster. It's a daily struggle and we're blessed to be able to contribute our thing to it.

Saul Marquez: [00:26:22] And what's the best place they could get a hold of you or follow you.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:26:25] Probably our website. We have a newsletter on their feet under it kind of lists everything.

Saul Marquez: [00:26:30] All are wonderful so listeners they have it sign up to their website. Get those updates. These guys are really thought leaders in what they're doing. So wow. I just want to say thank you once again and looking forward to keeping up on the progress that you guys make.

Wout Brusselaers: [00:26:44] Thank you and thanks for hosting us here.

: [00:26:50] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets

The Best Way To Contact Wout:

Mentioned Link/s:

Subscribe to Newsletter -

Episode Sponsors:

Healthcare Podcast

How To Optimize Clinical Trials with Artificial Intelligence with Wout Brusselaers, CEO at Deep 6 AI

No comments exist

Outcomes Rocket Podcast - Ira Pastor

Leveraging Regenerative Biology, Evolutionary Genomics, and Bio-Cybernetic for Chronic Disease Cures, with Ira Pastor, CEO at Bioquark Inc.

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:18] Outcomes Rocket listeners welcome back once again to the outcomes rocket podcast where we chat with today's most inspiring and successful health care leaders. I want to really thank you once again for tuning in and invite you to go to give us a rating and review them through Apple podcasts and one of our favorite things is looking at when the listeners let us know what they think. So drop us a line there. Let us know what you think of the show. I want to introduce to you an amazing guest today. His name is Ira Pastor. He is the CEO of Bioquark Incorporated. He is an extremely amazing individual focused in health care for almost two decades now his interest lies in combinatorial biologics and they're working to the level of the regulatory genome and just really doing some amazing things for age reversal as well as disease reversal. Super intriguing stuff that I think everybody is going to get a kick out of and really learn something from. So without further ado I want to open up the mic to my amazing guest Ira and let him fill in many of the gaps and then introduction. Ira welcome to the podcast.

Ira Pastor: [00:01:29] Thanks for having me on. Really appreciate it.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:31] Absolutely Ira. And so why did you decide get in the medical sector to begin with.

Ira Pastor: [00:01:36] I got my start as a pharmacist and in pharmacy training back of the day. They still haunts a few semesters of what was referred to as pharmacologists or medicinal botany. So I guess I know throughout the development in the industry the last 30 years or so I've always had appreciation for the natural world and sort of the fact that we live on this planet with organisms that sort of from a health and wellness perspective are are really much further advanced than we are as human beings. So you know obviously the audience is well aware that many members of the amphibian Kingdom are capable of replacing lost or damaged organs and limbs that are identical in both structure and function to the original they did in placing right. Yeah. I mean they do the same for limbs and hearts parts of their brains spinal cords obviously and we have a spinal cord Legion a serious one in a wheelchair the rest of our lives at the same time. They're very good. This is lesser known but it goes back to sort of seminal work in the 1940s reversing the diseased phenotype. So as an example cancer is you know cancer strikes all of us on this planet from humans to dogs snakes frogs the trees on down the line. But how the lower organisms deal with it is much different than we do. I mean they just shrug it off and like to turn tumors and other forms of cancer back into normal tissue and they do it very easily. And so you know the concept for Bioquark was basically taking a look at this what we know was for intuition epic morphic regeneration and reprogramming that is done throughout the natural world and throughout the biologic Kingdom are reconnecting it to humans because here we are are the most advanced species on the planet and yet we when it comes to sort of disease and degeneration we're not adding too well with regard to cures for some of these major diseases Alzheimers cancer just heart failure what have you. Basically wanted to take a look at a sort of from a different angle. And so when we got into the area that was what we defined as combinance where the biologics companies worry over talking about how we could develop pharmaco therapeutic interventions that do more than one that basically don't fall in those sort of a single magic bullet formula. The farm has been working well for this hundred years but basically how we think outside the box and say well ever more for regeneration is based on tissue reprogramming and this analytic events in control of the innate immune system how do we create Formic therapeutic materials bio products and refer to them as that can do multiple things at once and be ultimately developed regulated register as sort of a single drug entity that sort of the path that we decided to take with this company and ultimately how we develop products of that nature and then utilise them for what we refer to as the three Rs regeneration repair and ultimately rejuvenation of aged tissues in the human.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:40] I think that's super interesting. You're looking at this from a completely different perspective out of a box and looking across the species aisle so to speak and questioning why can't we use some of these things that are going on or are there. Give us an example of how Bioquark and you and your team there have improved outcomes by using these concepts.

Ira Pastor: [00:05:05] No absolutely. So as mentioned we are looking in our development platform is based on therapeutics that have more than 1 moiety or object moiety and can do multiple things so it is an example. We are working with a set of groups overseas one particularly in India right now on spinal cord regeneration research and this is an area that has really languished since the beginning of the pharmaceutical industry. Ultimately how we deal with neurogenesis in the central nervous system for the correction and repair of severe lesions which ultimately as humans leaves us paralyzed not just the rest of our lives. So we really want to understand how we could go beyond what exists currently whether that they are therapeutics that stimulate only one aspect of neurogenesis or areas like stem cells which have been exciting or been on the radar screen for a couple of decades now but really haven't hit the the ball out of the park yet. And so this is an area where we thought it would be ideal for our research program because when it comes to the area of spinal lesions we're dealing not just with the ability to grow new nerves and connect them in the appropriate ways but also how we deal with all of the scar tissue and other sort of Vetri within the the wound itself and how we turn that from scar tissue back into sort of normal tissue microenvironment bounden spinal cord. So you know we have been partnering our technology with firms in areas that we can speed up the clinical development and this is one area where had some very interesting phase 1 2 outcomes so far in the red of spinal cord injury starting from sort of age a complete loss of function and loss of sensation and begun moving some patients in our early clinical program up the path towards Asia b c and ultimately contemplating a complete reversal paralysis. So this is a very exciting area for us. We can't claim yet that we're getting people jumping out of wheelchairs but we are beginning to see the progression and the reprogramming of tissue just like it occurs in amphibians and other friends of nature that don't have to worry about paralysis and how we begin to get the owning and control of the bladder back so forth and ultimately the muscular response. So that's been one area that's been very exciting for us and we this day the entire central nervous system just as a target moving for the next 10 years and answering our long term plan is a very important area.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:56] That's super interesting Ira and congratulations on being able to get this amazing work done. Just imagine yourself sitting there might able to move. Then all of a sudden a company comes out with something that can help you find that help. That's pretty amazing. And how far away was this scientist. You probably get this question a lot but for Mr. Superman that you know was working so hard to get a solution.

Ira Pastor: [00:08:23] Well that's a bit of a longer story a little bit of background and experience in the pharmaceutical industry and as you're well aware you know the last since the start of the inception of the modern pharmaceutical industry the sort of a trend has been in researchers attempting to reduce in studying a health disease at the most basic components. So you know proteins gene cells and sort of continually looking for targets to develop drug compounds that interfere in some fashion with biologic process. But the problem has been that from the perspective of drug development many of these targets while they have generated wonderful treatments for us and trillions of dollars of wealth most of these traditional targets are what I refer to as the big a sort of inflammation immune response fibrosis thrombosis haemorrhage and then Zilker information the processes in the process. These are all outwits of disease. Ultimately we've done very little as an industry to develop biologics or biomaterials and drugs whatever you call them for the biologic factors that precede the pathologic disease. And this has been one of the stumbling blocks. So you know a combine that with the fact that the reductionist approach that's used to identify disease mechanisms or targets has been Wheatly ignored the fact that disease is rarely if ever a consequence of an abnormality in a single gene product or so but is an emergent state of multiple biologic processes that interact the complex networks. So ultimately now why hasn't this been done in the past. Because it is an integrated complex combinatorial target as most of them are acting in a dress with a single magic bullet it's not going to happen. So this is why. And you know obviously this is a very unique concept that is not the way we've looked at things for 100 years. I mean we might have looked before the modern era in this way in the sense of what we use as therapeutics but ultimately now we're seeing some of this reawakened in the minds of folks in the industry. And a case in point you my former employer when I used to work at GlaxoSmithKline they recently entered this area that some folks are getting their feet wet. So what is suitable is how one can get the drug completely out of the equation and just deal with the signaling events that are occurring. So I think we're beginning to see even though it's slow. I think we're beginning to see the move by some of the old paradigm of saying well OK maybe things don't always need to be done with a single magic bullet chemical and look like something else. And that's why we're doing what we're doing and ultimately in the future you know we can help Christopher Reeve now but he's just like that will be something that we'll be able to eliminate in 20 years so.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:24] It's pretty interesting and thanks for the context there. I totally agree with you Ira this concept that we know we're always targeting the disease and that what happens before that to prevent it. And I think it's a really great thing to have you focus there thinking about the mindset that exists today and then that the health care leader what would you say a hot topic that they should be thinking about today as it relates to taking care of their patients and running their business.

Ira Pastor: [00:11:51] Well I think a very hot topic is the transition in the mind to not just treating but how the interventions that one sees coming down the pike whether it's five or ten years but they're coming. How we move from a treatment basis or treatment centric modality to a curative one. One example of this as you know we speak about oncology and agribusiness is sort of the here's an example of an area that for decades know has been based around what we refer to it in the company as sort of the geocentric mentality that at the end of the day cancer is something whether it's surgery or radiation or chemo or smart drugs or immunotherapy that would kill. But once again you look around nature and the ones that survive cancer are the ones that deal with it. It has nothing to do with killing just like you wouldn't cut out parts of your brain with Alzheimer's disease. Does it always make sense to kill a tumor or like our friends in the natural world can we turn it into something else like normal tissue. So really thinking of these unique concepts and you know whether they're here today or whether they're coming down the road how we can begin to take a witness were that much of a holistic view on the patient and ultimately how that will impact the way I run my practice as a clinician and ultimately look at what that patient represents or whether it's a treatment event that we're going to maintain as such for a period of time or whether hey there are X Y and Z coming down the pike or 500 clinical trials. Let's begin to integrate some of these new concepts and help this entire shift which reveals clinically transformational occur more rapidly.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:48] Ira I would agree. You know and thanks for those Scots listeners that think about these ideas the Irish sharing here I mean it is transformational medicine and the traditional approaches that we've been doing and let's face it it's we can do things better. So not to just pat ourselves on the back for all the amazing things that we've done because we have we have. But what can we do that's transformational. And these are some really interesting concepts. Ira let us know of a time when you guys made a mistake or fail and what you got out of it.

Ira Pastor: [00:14:22] Well I think my grander experience in the last ten years in this company but also thinking to some of my other experiences from my previous company and also developing sort of non-traditional Therapeutics has been running to quickly with idea is that of though the regulators understood them were not necessarily ready to approve that example prior to this and this is sort of one of my connections into into sort of it's combinatorial dynamic. I worked for 10 years in the biochemical arena and was involved in design of drug development which was an area that the FDA created back in originally in 1996 ultimately created formal guidelines in 2004. So basically once again how you merge this concept of multiple biochemical entities in one and how you regulate that and they created a wonderful set of guidance on how companies should go about doing this including some of the biggest ones. Pfizer was funding us in time but at the end of the day what we realized that was a big difference between the regs that were put on the documents and ultimately how the teams internally at FDA wanted to develop. So that was an example of getting something far into development into Phase 3 and ultimately getting delayed substantially further our sort of registrational development because in those particular cases the FDA was used to seeing clinical data occurring before preclinical data which is in essence what the guidelines allowed you. So you know we have hundreds of patients of clinical data but yet were we were pushed back to the ranch and the rabbits for a couple of years. That was one example of sort of running a bit too fast because the regs were sitting there on line but sort of not thinking that you know the Reges registrational system is is more than just the regs it's sort of the organic system that people and personalities. And so that's one thing.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:23] That's such a great takeaway Ira and for everybody that's in the business of either pharmaceuticals or device or any product that's being regulated by them. It's very important to remember that there's a human factor in as well.

Ira Pastor: [00:16:37] Exactly.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:38] Great takeaway. And so now what we do. How do you after that happen. How do you handle things based off of that experience.

Ira Pastor: [00:16:47] Very well structured early preclinical development program not skipping anything and ultimately using the same guidance that you know they put out there as far as CMC and pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic were that basically understanding that even though there are ways to speed things up and opportunities we still need the dot all the i's and cross the t's now realizing before we get final approval so it just made us a little more structured a little more conservative in how we're developing this program. But nonetheless it did not scare us away from the fact that hey our drug product at the end of the day our API is going to look different than other JPI but it will be it will be a drug like anything else.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:36] Love it. That's a great lesson there and thanks for sharing it. Tell us a little bit more about an exciting project that you're working on today.

Ira Pastor: [00:17:44] Sure. So the one that generated quite a bit of excitement last year has to do with some of what we are moving forward with on the living conniver research funds. I know this is going got a lot of excitement in the in the blogosphere with zombies and Frankenstein references and so forth but it was a little less dramatic than that but ultimately we're focusing on how we can use any existing research model that has existed in the United States for a couple decades now for toxicology and pharmacokinetics and some of the dynamics that he's using recently deceased cadaver subjects have donated their bodies to science to test some of these particular models in human neurogenesis and vascular Genesis in the higher brain and brain stem. Obviously this is a unique area but it has gone on. Maybe it's not as sexy as cancer or Alzheimer's research but it has occurred for many years now. Alternately we are looking at it as one of the tools in a basket on how we study complex complete human regeneration in many different forms so this has been an interesting idea for us sort of venturing beyond the the rats and the rabbits and the pigs. But you have this you have a model there that is legal is ethical and we'll be interested in what comes out of in this particular part of our Pergram higher.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:08] Oh wow. Very interesting. So I can't imagine that a cup of coffee with you Ira is a normal cup of coffee. I'm sure the conversations that could be had with you at a conference or anything that will be just like this that we're having right now so if anybody needs Ira out and about at a conference by all means look at his badge. He's a handsome gentleman and have a conversation with him. I think what you'll find is you'll probably get some new ideas and think beyond the box. So thanks for sharing that insight there. It's really exciting. Never even heard of that actually.

Ira Pastor: [00:19:41] Absolutely. A lot of people have and it is one of those things quietly going on for the last 30 years in the United States. But it's just as I said it's not sexy but it's a form of research that we feel needs to be part of a complete human regeneration program at some point as we fix these these complex diseases that kill us.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:02] Yeah. Very interesting. Ira let's pretend you and I are building a medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine training. It's the one 101 or the ABC of IRA pastor. And so you and I are going to write out the syllabus right now with four questions to this lightning round. You ready. OK. All right. What's the best way to improve health care outcomes.

Ira Pastor: [00:20:25] Move from any treatment based approach that's highly targeted towards disease or Orco genomic outputs to a one that focuses on curative interventions and the path of biological events that occurred before one gets that.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:42] What's the biggest mistake or a pitfall to avoid.

Ira Pastor: [00:20:45] Moving too quickly without comprehensive understanding of the intricacies that are involved in sort of this 21st century systems based model of medicine.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:59] How do you stay relevant as an organization despite constant change.

Ira Pastor: [00:21:03] Always thinking outside of the box with regard to our research programs our disease targets and our collaborative partnerships that any firm civically and in the biotech field needs to have to have a complete successful program.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:23] And what is one area of focus that should drive everything else in your organization.

Ira Pastor: [00:21:28] Never losing sight of our goal. Despite the amazing apprehension towards innovation that unfortunately occurs in the pharmaceutical industry nowadays.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:42] Love that IRA what would you say a book that you recommend to the listeners to add in the syllabus would be.

Ira Pastor: [00:21:48] One of my favorites that ever got me started on this path actually this is an oldie to go look at to the used book section on Amazon but written by University of Indiana's Dr Paul back in 1968 in the shuffle brain it is one of the first examples of brain transplantation and brain regeneration in the intervening kingdom. It was written basically studying memory and estimation processing but the fact that he was able to move range from one organism to another and keep species alive is a forgotten part of sort of biomedical research but it's out there and that that occurred in the 1960s. It's just one of those things that says why don't we forget so much that happened in the past and why so few people know about these wonderful discoveries years later.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:38] That's really interesting shuffle brain. So contract listeners take a look at all of these amazing things that we've talked about That's i r a. You'll be able to find all of the show notes as well as links to the companies that Ira is working with what is linked to this book shuffle brain that might blow your socks off. So Ira really appreciate all the things that we've talked about today. Before I conclude I'd just like to invite you to share a closing thought the listeners and then the best place that they can get ahold of you.

Ira Pastor: [00:23:11] Absolutely. So I'm located You can contact me there any time and learn about the company from the website. Ultimately we feel that from a future perspective nothing is off the table when it comes to the 100000 people that we lose every day from AIDS related diseases or the 50000 people that die every day from the trauma. It is well within the intellectual capacity of humans to solve these problems related disease degeneration and death. And we really need to think outside the box and not fall into any of the traps set by the previous industry in the century old model that has done well creating treatments but hasn't cured us of much so nature has a lot of solutions and all we really need to do is follow the lead they show us.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:02] That's a great message IRA again just want to thank you and encourage listeners to think outside the box. Look at nature for those answers and think in a curative perspective. As Ira has laid out the groundwork here and our thinking so without a doubt. Ira this has been awesome and really want to thank you for making the time to spend with us.

Ira Pastor: [00:24:21] Thanks so much for having me. It was a pleasure.

: [00:24:26] Thanks for listening to the outcomes rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

Shuffle Brain: The Quest for the Holgramic Mind

The Best Way To Contact Ira:

Other Podcasts With Ira

Health Professional Radio -

The Inner Game Of Aging Podcast -

Happy and Healthy Over 40 Podcast -

The Aging Boomers Podcast -

The Becoming SuperHuman Podcast -

Healing Ties Podcast -

The TRT Revolution Podcast -

Humans 2.0 Podcast -


Episode Sponsors:

Healthcare Podcast

Outcomes Rocket Podcast - Ira Pastor

No comments exist

A New Way to Engage Patients for Better Outcomes with Todd Johnson, Chief Executive Officer at HealthLoop, Inc.

A New Way to Engage Patients for Better Outcomes with Todd Johnson, Chief Executive Officer at HealthLoop, Inc.

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:19] Outcomes rocket listeners welcome back once again to the Outcomes Rocket podcast for we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. Hey I want to invite you to visit Let us know what you thought about today's episode and we truly thankful for you listening and even more thankful for your feedback. It's what allows us to be better. Get you what you need to improve outcomes and reduce inefficiencies. Without further ado I want to introduce to you our outstanding guest. His name is Todd Johnson. He's the chief executive officer at HealthLoop Incorporated. They are an exciting new comer to the patient engagement space led by physicians HealthLoop has created a powerful platform which enables a meaningful partnership between physicians and their patients to ensure optimal outcomes and minimal health costs. HealthLoop promotes to be an impactful vendor and their risk bearing health entities including health plans a CEO's IPA as he has done some pretty amazing things he's put together an outstanding group of people over a loop. But besides that he's had quite a bit of experience as a leader across several other businesses. But what I want to do is open up the microphones attached to fall in any other gaps in the intro. Todd welcome to the podcast.

Todd Johnson: [00:01:36] Thank you for having me. SAUL Yeah let me just briefly introduce HealthLoop in in our journey here and we can get into it. You know I've been in the healthcare space now for 20 years and have seen first hand the development of technology into the healthcare delivery system and so much of that technology is either focused on new interventions that we think about MRI machinery but also the electronic medical record which I think Boley is here to help the provider organizations become a little bit more efficient organize their data and operate it in a more sophisticated way. And you know our belief here at healthloop is if you really really want to drive meaningful outcomes you don't treat the patient as a product and most people think about their healthcare incredibly transactional is often difficult to get into see your doctor or if you have to get into a hospital there's a lot of logistics there and many health care providers can do a wonderful job when you're sitting with them in the room about diagnosing you or understanding what the right treatment options are and sending you on your way. But once you leave the four walls of the clinic providers sort of generally rely on hope as the strategy to get that outcome. They hope you know what to do. They hope you know how to do it. They hope that you do it well and they hope that if things aren't going well that the patient kind of reaches back out right to get the assistance they need. And the truth is in a value based world. Hope is not a strategy for success and clearly all of us as individuals have seen the profound impact in technology in our daily lives. We're all addicted to our smartphones. We're online all the time and you know the primary mode that we're using those technologies for communicating. If you look at the top apps on your phone is it the phone it's an sms, email is ways to communicate between us as individuals and as patients we get very limited communication. We have a very sort of a brick wall between us and our and our doctors. So healthloop as a company really tries to eliminate those barriers and engage patients throughout an episode of care and the basic sort of fundamental building blocks of Health is that if you're going through an acute episode of care. So if you've been newly diagnosed with a with the difficulty disease are you require surgery that the health of a patient gets the proactive automated push notifications from their doctor before coming in and after discharged from the hospital to deliver to patients the right information at the right time is exactly what you need to know today. And how are you doing today. And then we'll carefully assess using complete autonomy. How are you doing today. And it's helped with the tasks that you were discharged from the hospital five days ago after an exacerbation of heart failure and today you're starting to show some signs of weight gain or new shortness of breath. Those are those early signs of treatment failure rather than hope that the patient does something. What health food does as we notify the clinical team. Here's a patient that needs your help now. And the punchline here is we've gotten the company to a fairly significant scale and are seeing real outcomes and decided to share some of the recent news here as we as we've further discussed. So any question, Saul, had a good place to start from.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:57] That is a wonderful place to start. Todd and now what a beautiful way of laying out the context of what you and your company are doing to improve healthcare. Really appreciate that. Thank you Todd. It's really interesting. It's a two way communication not just one way that healthloop is doing. And I want to dig a little deeper. On the personal side what got you into medicine to begin with.

Todd Johnson: [00:05:21] So my entry to medicine was somewhat accidental. The year was 1999. I was a computer science graduate. There was a time in history where I think all the computer science engineers were scrambling to the first wave of com to figure out how they could build a company. And the truth is I sat around with a few buddies and we couldn't come up with any great Internet ideas. We started reaching out to the people we knew and we just so happened to me a few positions that Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore who wanted to solve some real problems and set us off. It turns out in medicine there is no shortage of problems. The technology offer a wonderful efficiency gain. And so I spent the first 12 years of my career really focusing on using technology to address both local issues and healthcare delivery systems here in the United States. And then we did the public health work in subsaharan Africa but all centered around delivery higher quality more efficient patient care.

Saul Marquez: [00:06:23] Love it. A great story and it's cool that you could look back to those days and you've stayed the course. So it's definitely something that is striking you in a way that you feel it's purposeful and now you're here with health loupe which is pretty exciting. What do you think every leader in healthcare today should have at the top of their mind.

Todd Johnson: [00:06:43] Well I think the longer you spend in health care the greater risk you are of thinking about things in terms of quality measures and numerators and denominators and Arby use. And we sort of sanitize the business of medicine from the real work on the ground. And I think all of us need to spend some time back in the clinic or back in the hospital sort of getting that first hand appreciation that patients aren't just revenue sources. Right. Our cost center health plan they're going through scary moments in their lives and I think all of us that have been in health care often get these unique moment to reflect on the system and that's when we're sick or family members in that sort of anchors us back to why we're doing what we're doing and I think all of us need to be frequently reminded of the human impact of our work. And then I think I'm a bit of a cynic when it comes to the health care delivery system. You know when you look at the exorbitant amount of money that we spend in the United States on health care every year. You know I think that there's good actors and there's bad actors and those exist in every vertical segment of the industry and having a vigilant focus I think on how can we truly improve outcomes and drive down costs. Every cost reduction is somebody's revenue though there is interest. And I think that the hard questions are for those business leaders that the big corporations that are consuming a big chunk of that health care and you know at the end of the day it's not an easy decision to think about how can you actually reduce costs that are cannibalistic. You're having a difficult decision or leaders debate.

Saul Marquez: [00:08:25] That that's for sure. The patient aliment listeners don't forget this is why we're in health care and the challenges that you mentioned Todd it just you know yeah if you're looking to take costs out of the system you're looking to take the profits or the revenue of the system of key players so as you think of that what are you doing to strike a balance. And so you mentioned that there is maybe a little bit of news. I'm kind of intrigued so maybe you want to share it.

Todd Johnson: [00:08:54] Yeah. So on the surface I think this notion that if you can provide continuous guidance to patients throughout a scary episode in their lives we carefully monitor them. You ought to get better outcome. And as a business we have a strong commitment to research. And we've done a number of studies over the years that have proven things like well the price. If you're continuously delivering the right information at the right time patients have a better comprehension of what they need to do to get better. It turns out that if you're continuously connected to your patients and make it really really easy for them to reach out to you when they have questions or concerns that they have a much greater level of satisfaction with their service. However just two weeks ago at a hip and knee Society conference in Dallas two fairly groundbreaking studies were presented regarding health issues. The first study was with doctors defining being a Brown University California Stanford. He's an orthopedic surgeon and they've been using healthloop on their patients for quite some time now. They've got a significant amount of the data in looking at their data what they have discovered is that they are seeing a significant reduction in complication. So if a patient is discharged from their hospital after surgery they're seeing fewer surgical site infections fewer blood clots fewer adverse event right because patients are better in they're doing what they need to do and they're seeing as a result of that a very significant reduction in hospital readmission though the patients that are discharged much less frequently end up back in the hospital within 30 days. The second study which is equally as interesting is this with one of the nation's largest health plans though an insurance company would withdraw. And they look at across the multi facility multi provider or you're a clinical study. Probably the largest in the patient engagement they base certainly the most credible and it comes to the similar conclusion. Dr. Beany study that question have better outcomes they get fewer hospitalizations fewer E.R. visits. You were a complication. But what's interesting about the health insurance companies they know the cost of everything. And so they are really looking at you know does enrolling patients can help to reduce the total cost of care and what they've found for these surgical episodes was about a 660 dollar per case cost reduction when patients are enrolled. So the fact that we can use digital technology to not only improve quality improve the patient experience but ultimately squeeze out cost in the healthcare delivery system we think is relatively profound. And then I think to me I lived very much in that space. The solutions are both obvious and inevitable and we're sort of impatient. I believe every patient in the country deserves a health that if I may get them my family members loved ones have to go through a complex medical episode. I want them on health so I want them to get the best care they can.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:51] Well congratulations to you and your team for the studies and the results right. You know the studies are one thing. The results are what matters. And from a provider perspective as well as from a pear perspective sounds like the RAII as there now. What about on the privacy part. You know I know sometimes oftentimes the hip issues arise with technology and you know patient data. How do you guys deal with that. How do you keep it protected.

Todd Johnson: [00:12:19] Yeah I think that protecting health information is an important and necessary bar for every company in that space and honoring preserving the privacy of our patients is something that you just have to do period. I often think about I had a cardiac condition and had surgery earlier in my life and I was at the dentist office and you know how you have to go the past medical history forms. Here I put on the dentist's office that I had this heart surgery and heart condition. The receptionist who is a really lovely lady and I was a 28 year old healthy male is like Oh my goodness. Had you had a heart surgery. And of course there's a dozen other people in the waiting room that said this comes over slapped on the hand that the reach of ph. Yeah. Right. And of course I didn't care you know didn't matter to me. You know I think the risk with companies like health and other large companies is that you get so much data consolidated that you know one breach can expose more than that one person in the waiting room to have some friends or others in the waiting room maybe not friends but that you could have millions and millions of records leached out. So I think having the appropriate protection around those is essential. And I think we've seen some unfortunate events of the last year. And you know I think what 85 million patient records are seeing these things happen and my guess is there's an economy based on really health information that companies need to be really vigilant. I think the flipside to that though is that patients in general really really want the best outcome every time and they are willing to make their information available to others that they think it's going to help. And we're seeing sort of a trend of patients increasingly donating their data science or participating in online forums that help them get greater information and so that he had the best outcome possible.

Saul Marquez: [00:14:12] Yeah it's interesting you bring up some good points there Todd. You know if you're a company much like a digital company like care loop you make sure that your information secure. But don't hold yourself back. There are some solutions that can be provided patients are now more than ever willing to provide their information to improve their care. They've had it. And so it's time to really look beyond that limitation and just dare to create solutions for them. Tad what would you say one of your biggest challenges or setbacks that you've had and what did you learn from it.

Todd Johnson: [00:14:44] Yeah so I think that distributing health care innovations throughout the healthcare system is hard. You've got big corporations and particularly on the providers side when their product is high quality outcomes and you're talking about patient safety really needs to be paramount on their agenda. If you get a relatively risk averse customer base and so innovating is hard. I think on top of that there's actually a great article this morning in the New York Times just the level of uncertainty in how our health care economics are playing out in a very broad sense. If you look back to the last 80 years we've built the healthcare delivery system that's been buying and selling transactions. The doctor's office want to see as many patients today as the hospital wants to fill as many as many operating are also very transactional throughput. Orient them and that is bring bankrupting the country. We know that there have been efforts over the last six or seven years to really focus on what is called value based healthcare which is instead of paying for every individual transaction to pay for an outcome and I want the health care provider to do what is right to do that at a reasonable cost. And that trajectory has was still continuously marching forward with the change up in Washington D.C. there's just uncertainty around how quickly the healthcare economics will change how swiftly and severely they will be implemented. The Obama administration was marching very quickly to transforming the payment system. And things have sort of stalled out. And so I think with that how do you navigate the uncertainty. It's not an easy thing to do. So you know I think the lessons learned are actually quite simple. At least for our business. Always focused on higher quality lower cost care. We believe is always the right answer is the right answer that should be rewarded. It's the one that will be rewarded and we focus on working with the providers that are ready to do that today. And you know for a hospital for instance doesn't want to reduce their readmission rate because that means reducing revenue of patients coming back. That's not the right partner for us today. That's a hard thing to do some time.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:05] For sure. It's a good message Todd and listeners take that into consideration. Policies are always changing but the tried and true is that if you provide quality at low cost it's always going to be the right answer. So thanks Todd for that reminder.

Todd Johnson: [00:17:21] For your listeners. One of the challenging things. It's hard to understand who's providing health care at higher quality lower cost than no place to go. Right. We typically learn about our doctors from our friends and family right or from our primary care physician. There's no easy place to go see who's the best doctor. And so increasingly we're seeing new tools come on the market that can help patients do that.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:45] Yeah and not for the listeners you've probably already listened to my interview with Shakil, Shakil has put together a sort of like credit report for health providers grading them on outcomes. So go back to that episode with Shakil if you go to outcomesrocket/shakil you'll be able to find that. And like Todd said more and more people are developing these resources. It's only going to get better as time moves on. Todd, take us into one of your most exciting projects today. Oh I see. I know you guys had a lot of them.

Todd Johnson: [00:18:19] So yeah I think that we've done a lot of work sort of with individual medical groups and provider organization and just to look the last week we launched with a partner called Naveh health that is basically partnering with hospitals around the country saying that we as an organization can help you manage acute discharges so these are things like patients that had a heart attack or failure and ended up somehow manage those at scale. And so just last week we launched programs across 25 hospitals with them to focus really on the sickest patient and health group is able to reach out and you know do literally you know thousands of patient assessments every day which previously they had nurses on telephones trying to hunt down patients. And so we're really seeing some of the solutions come to scale. It's really exciting it's fun.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:13] That's a really cool application. Do you do crack conditions only or do you lump in also like traumas that that come in in the dark.

Todd Johnson: [00:19:20] Now our belief is that health care providers are going to need to manage all patients with this level of intimate support and service. And I think the state of the industry today is hospitals will focus their energy where it costs them the most. Which means they're going to focus on these really really high cost patients right. Which leaves 80 or 90 percent of their patients without this additional support. That's right. And so we've we've made investments to have these Bishil care pathways across most of the acute care medicine which is 50 percent surgery. So trauma orthopedics cardiovascular surgery ear nose and throat Obi GYN programs as well as the high cost chronic patients. I think our DNA has been more from the surgical episode of care is actually where we got started things like orthopedics and cardiac surgery sort of moving up the ladder towards some of the more complex poly chronic patients.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:16] I love it. And you know the cool thing Todd that you guys are up to is is just that you've targeted these to begin with. It sounds like you've gone broader now but these areas of care that include the bundled payments or are where you get readmission penalties you're targeting those where the financial incentives are and if you're a company trying to build a solution you've got to be thoughtful about your approach like Todd and his team have. I mean you're not going to get the needle to move if you don't follow the financial trail. I mean that's sad but true right.

Todd Johnson: [00:20:49] Absolutely. And the truth is there's a lot of money that we can worry out of the health care delivery system in some cases. It's actually not as hard as you think it is but being really targeted focusing on the patients where you can move the needle and actually again our belief is that all patients deserve health care. But we've been really thoughtful about exposing capabilities where you might have more sort of advanced communication capabilities for the patients that are likely to have adverse event. But you can still have a meaningful experience for other patients where their risk of additional cost is extremely low.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:24] Yeah, some really good insights. Todd this is awesome. Let's pretend you and I are building a medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine today. It's the 101 or the ABC of Todd Johnson. We're going to build a syllabus here and it's a lightning round style four questions followed by a book that you recommend to the listeners. You ready.

Todd Johnson: [00:21:44] Yeah.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:45] Awesome. What is the best way to improve health care outcomes.

Todd Johnson: [00:21:48] So I think focusing in the United States on the 330 million people that have the most to gain. Right. Every patient wants better outcomes at lower cost. If we can bring them into the fold and get them to be active participants in their health care is a tremendous resource that is free and they want that and they want to help. So engaging patients I think is the number one bestseller.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:11] Love it. What is the biggest mistake or a pitfall to avoid.

Todd Johnson: [00:22:15] I think if focusing on areas where the industry doesn't yet want to change or isn't ready to change to truly understanding where is their economic alignment with the goals of better outcome and starting there.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:31] How do you stay relevant as an organization. Despite constant change.

Todd Johnson: [00:22:35] Yeah so I think they need to track the teams and be on top of it. But B I think this coming back to higher quality lower cost care is always the right answer. If you just continue to focus on delivering exceptional quality and at a sort of an economic advantage you will stay relevant and you will win.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:57] And finally Todd What is one area of focus that should drive everything else in your organization.

Todd Johnson: [00:23:02] Yeah I think it's about helping healthcare providers implement the necessary change to be successful. The industry needs to be taught how to move how to move quickly how to implement the change that's necessary to get the outcomes that they need.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:18] Well said and what book would you recommend to the listeners.

Todd Johnson: [00:23:22] Yeah so if you want a great education on the dysfunction of healthcare economics and the accretion of what we call an ecosystem but if it goes to the healthcare there's a great book by Dan Monroe called Justino health care. Sort the story of how we got here and some of the tragic mistakes in designing our health care economics that have led us to where we are today a.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:45] Phenomenal recommendation. Todd and I literally just finished reading it. It was awesome. Listeners take this one down. Write it part of the syllabus. You're going to get so much value out of this book. Promise you and it is definitely a great way to really dive deeper into this. Don't worry about writing it down. Just go to that's TODD J. And you're going to be able to find all of the show notes as well as links to healthLoop and this amazing book that just recommended you. Before I conclude I would just love to ask you to share one closing thought to the listeners. And then the best place where they can get hold of you.

Todd Johnson: [00:24:26] Yeah. So I think for your listeners if you have the unfortunate life event that requires you to to reach out to the health care delivery system or have a family member that challenged the doctors the hospitals that you that there are innovations out there they should be pushing the needle and ask them you know what they're doing to improve quality. And don't be shy when engaging with your healthcare providers. You owe it to yourself.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:51] Great advice Todd and what is the best place that the listeners could follow or get a hold of you.

Todd Johnson: [00:24:57] Yep you can find us on Twitter and you can find all of our details at Find us there. And if anybody has any particularly interesting anecdotes that they'd love to share with me always looking to hear patients stories they can e-mail me directly

Saul Marquez: [00:25:13] Love it so there you have it listeners. Todd shared his e-mail as well as ways to contact Todd. Really appreciate the time you spent with us today. And I'm so excited to keep up with the amazing things that you guys are up to.

Todd Johnson: [00:25:25] Thank you for your time. We appreciate it.

: [00:25:30] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

The Best Way To Contact Todd: 

Mentioned Link/s: 

Healthcare Podcast

A New Way to Engage Patients for Better Outcomes with Todd Johnson, Chief Executive Officer at HealthLoop, Inc.

No comments exist

Best Healthcare Podcasts

Best Healthcare Podcasts

We spend a lot of time studying and working within the healthcare economy. We believe that the best way to improve outcomes and results is by breaking down the silos through conversations. Our conversations with healthcare stakeholders include talks with payors, provider execs, practitioners, industry execs, entrepreneurs, medical schools, scholars, policy analysts and government officials. Whether it be by connecting with our 100+ amazing guests, attending the hottest medical conferences or researching traditional and trend-setting people and topics, we stay tuned into the pulse of the healthcare market.

A portion of our market research has focused on the medium of podcasting. Since we do our fair share of podcasting, we also like to keep in close touch with the hottest and most credible podcasts in healthcare. In the list we have curated for you below, we have provided a listing of the podcasts we believe will add major value to you and your organization. While this list is not comprehensive, nor is it stack ranked, consider it a finely distilled list of the best podcasts in healthcare available today. 

Since I think these shows are awesome, I want to make it easy for you to access them.  If you click on the host pictures, I placed a link for you to check out their webiste.  If you click on the podcast logo it will link you to the iTunes page to subscribe.  If you like what they're doing, don't forget to leave them a rating and review.  It helps the shows ranking and will help the hosts continue spreading the word and get more amazing guests to help you break down silos and improve our health system.

To your health, 

Saul Marquez 

Best Healthcare Podcasts

Best Healthcare Podcasts

- Medtech Talk -

Medtech Talk

Medtech Talk

One of two excellent podcasts produced by the folks at Healthegy. (The other one below) This podcast features one interview per week, average length 35 minutes, on amazing entrepreneurs and proven leaders in healthcare. Host Tom Salemi digs deep into topics and health solutions. Their candid questions make the conversations value-packed and enjoyable. With 96 episodes published to date, these guys are serious about contributing to the healthcare conversation in a highly professional way.  Tune into Medtech Talk here!


- TedTalks Health -

Ted Talks Health

From the household name TED (technology engineering and design) that produces expert talks on ideas that have and will continue shaping our way of life, they have curated talks on healthcare. Average show length is 15 minutes. The unique thing about this podcast is that when you open up the show on your mobile device, you can both stream audio and video content. With over 115 episodes published to date and backed by the folks at TED, this is a healthcare podcast that is here to stay and will provide reliable content for anyone looking to stay at the forefront of medicine. Tune into Ted Talks Health here!


- Digital Health Today -

Digital Health Today

Digital Health Today

Host Dan Kendall is a talented contributor to conversations in digital health. He writes the most thoughtfully crafted intros and outros and allows his highly distinguished guests to tell their story in an uninterrupted way. Every show, he shares resources with his listeners that include updated conference schedules and a very comprehensive show notes with links to all that was discussed. This once a week podcast, average show length 40 minutes, is packed with digital gold. If you are interested in staying abreast of trends in digital health, this is your podcast. Tune into Digital Health Today here!


- Breaking Health Podcast -

Breaking Health Podcast

Breaking Health Podcast

This is the other podcast created by the folks at Healthegy. Host Stephen Krupa (Managing Director, Psilos Group), a healthcare venture capitalists enables the listener to have a seat at the table with VCs and entrepreneurs. Stephen brings forth his investor insight and reveals insights with his disruptive Health CEO guests. This podcast is like the JP Morgan health conference in your ears, once a week. Conversations get intense, he provides pertinent insights and value to anyone looking to keep their finger on the disruptive pulse of health startups. Average show length is 37 minutes and the podcast publishes once a week. Like Med Tech Talks, they are 98 episodes in and cranking hard! Tune into Breaking Health Podcast here!


- Tech Tonics -

Tech Tonics by Venture Valkyrie

Tech Tonics

Co-hosts, Lisa Suennen (Sr. Director, GE Ventures) and David Shaywitz, MD Ph.D. (Sr. Partner at Takeda Ventures), bring a relevant and distinguished approach to health podcasting. Using their business and medical expertise, they are able to bring the people of the health field to life. They engage a range of intriguing and accomplished guests in discussions that enable listeners to appreciate the stories behind the startups. Listen to this podcast if you want to become tech and business savvy in healthcare while at the same time enjoy some entertaining conversation. This podcast publishes two shows a month, average show length is 35 minutes. This is one of the most engaging podcasts you can listen to in healthcare. Tune into Tech Tonics here!


- What the Health -

Julie Rovner

What the Health?

Host Julie Rovner (Chief Washington correspondent for Kaiser Health News) brings together the brightest and most up to date policy reporter minds from the Washington Post, New York Times, Politico and others. Brought to you by Kaiser Health News, these bright women in healthcare policy put some sense into "what the health" is going on in Washington. One of my favorites takeaways from the podcast is at the end of the podcast where they share "extra credit". Julie and each of her guests share a news resource, podcast etc. they highly recommend. They pack the podcast with value and this puts the show over the edge and delivers massive insight into health policy and beyond. Listen to this podcast to stay up to date on health policy and if you just want to become smarter. Tune into What the Health here!


- 2 Docs Talk -

2 docs talk

2 docs talk

Co-hosts Kendall Britt, MD and Amy Rodgers, MD do a fantastic job of covering subjects like healthcare, the science of medicine, health policy and everything in between. They're a lot of fun to listen to. They tackle personal health questions along with tough topics like the direction of the ACA (affordable care act). If you're looking for a provider thought leader podcast that also helps you understand the basics of your own personal health, take a listen to this podcast. With over 90 episodes published, average listening time 15 minutes, this is a commuters podcast guaranteed to deliver value every single time. Tune into the 2 Docs Talk Podcast here!


No comments exist

The Healing Art of Medical Massage with Jocelyn Cowie, CEO of ASSESSx Technology Ltd.

The Healing Art of Medical Massage with Jocelyn Cowie, CEO of ASSESSx Technology Ltd.

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Maquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:19] Outcomes rocket listeners welcome back once again to the outcomes rocket where we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. I really want to thank you for tuning in and invite you to go to where you could leave a rating and review for today's podcast on Apple podcasts. Let us know what you think. We love hearing from our listeners. So without further ado I want to introduce our outstanding guest. Her name is Jocelyn Cowie. She's a renowned medical massage therapist with an outstanding testimonials. Hundreds of pro athletes including Canucks alumni and GFI team qualifiers for National Baseball Congress World Series in Wichita Kansas. She's published theses and abstracts three of them and the Canadian painters Society International Association for the Study of Pain. The Fasha 3 Congress Canadian government grants she's she has an outstanding background and has done so much in the space of medical massage therapy. She's also an entrepreneur and she's done plenty in this space. So what I wanted to do is open up the microphone to Jocelyn to up that introduction. It's also a little bit more about herself and then we could dive into the show Jocelyn, and welcome to the podcast.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:01:36] Thank you so very much. Very kind of you to introduce me and thank you for having me on your show. Medical massage is an interesting healing art. I started in 1985 graduating from the West Coast college and saw John Michael and going to the training program which to find out how my modality actually worked because I started doing massage as a child into every mom dad you know got my back rub my shoulders. You know I got married at a young age my husband was a driver and massages every day and nursing aide and learn some basic massage and then I could work with my mom with her rheumatoid arthritis she was a nurse. Is he an archaeologist anymore she started with reflexology course. I could tell my mom amazing results and that led me to want to understand this Healing Heart. And when I graduated from the West Coast college massage I started teaching massage to people realized diseases out of that thesis in 1993 realized tension and started working on patenting medical device to measure pain.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:36] That's very interesting.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:37] And so Jason we had a chance to connect that the Health 2.0 meeting and you can walk us through how that worked then and so excited to get through how the device works as well on the podcast. Thanks for walking us through that story. You know we'll got you in the medicine. Sounds like you were you were first introduced by just being able to help others at home. And then it just expanded from there so you give an example to the listeners of how you and your company are helping improve outcomes.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:03:08] That is a more complicated question and outcomes are ofcourse with applied AI right now. You can collect data from sensors that are measuring so many things as wearables right now that I know there's nobody who is really measuring what we're trying to measure which is areas where people actually feel the pain in MRIs can look at here through brain scans and see scattered wavelengths that indicate that there's something going on with the nervous system is getting a signal and actually getting to the point of pain is what we're trying to do is get to where pain starts which is when we but the inflammatory responses.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:48] And you're identifying these aimpoint areas and what happens after you identify them.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:03:52] You collect that data and humanity charter and you show the results that apply therapy to the inflammatory responses that are causing the pain. So instead of painting the subjective reality that people are expressing and everybody's trying to interpret on a scale at once and cause of how people what gender they are what age they are what nationality they are and how it's expressed or houses interpreted is subjective right now as to people on a scale of 1 to 10 really is not fair to do that if he were trying to resolve some of these pain or the patients themselves is trying to be believed and the Haitian people are dying every day from the prescribed medication or know overdose epidemic is a huge problem right now. We believe we can solve that problem by. First while we have a more balanced that works we can improve that modality. Let's get evidence based outcomes by having real tools measured treat that cost show outcomes P therapies and over time supply that gap to insurance companies that they want to get involved in paying the people who buy painterly remedies or reimbursement that right now are moving into other modalities actually cause disease and sickness like opiates and impairment. I mean there's a time and place. Don't get me wrong totally because I may and should be able to access medications they need to resolve their pain. And I'm not an anti anti inflammatory just think long term use has no side effects that the FDA has recognized and certainly the U.S. government is really upset right now with the opiate crisis. Trump is putting money into it too as well. So I mean we know there's a serious problem here.

Saul Marquez: [00:05:40] Absolutely Josslyn and thanks for walking us through that. You know it sounds like you're bringing the science to physical therapy in a way that you'll be able to quantify the pain you'll be able to quantify how much pain has been alleviated and in turn be able to make it a more viable option compared to the go to just kind of knee jerk reaction to opiates or anything like that. And I think it's really cool that you're approaching this and you're you're taking this head on. Can you give an example to listeners of how you've been able to create results already.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:06:15] We have been doing mostly literature reviews on different ways that we could measure inflammatory responses. And through those literature reviews trying to prototype devices test those devices and scientific studies and revise the design. Of the device in order to actually get to a point where we have a viable product. When I started I certainly had no idea when I was getting myself into. I mean the good and bad news is that the good news is is that there is a solution to measure inflammation. Yes bad news is is hiring engineers are very expensive company. It's very onerous and certainly stretches my area of expertise which is really in the manual therapy of spine pain really says a therapist which is a great job and is a thrilling occupation. Helping people who are suffering every day is passionate. I never cease to be tired. I never feel tired from what I do. I just help people every day and he was so grateful and appreciative and I'm so fortunate to have found the right passion and get to help people every day. So starting a company that is a different type of animal yeah not it not my area of expertise advice I certainly done lots of field camps and. The a.a program in the Silicon Valley and I did the Florida program in Anaheim and I've done it Indian consulate missions in Minneapolis and yes so I mean there are support out there. I just wish that sometimes they had me what the tale was doing. Sometimes I wish that my door was knocked down and you have an answer to a problem like this who might give it to the world. That's like wow you're trying to push through the door when the door should be actually being knocked out. So that would be sort of my point home reality is that. The door should be knocked down. I shouldn't have to be knocking.

Saul Marquez: [00:08:03] Yeah you know Jesson and that's a great point that you bring up because there's a lot of very interesting innovation happening in health care and it is the cycles to the will are long and arduous and expensive and often times entrepreneurs will find themselves in these areas where it's just like how do I get traction with this equipment. Like people should be running in just large numbers of people who should be coming to my door to get this and you get it out there and nobody shows up.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:08:35] Well actually it's not out there yet. So we're not really worried about people you know actually knocking down our doors. Yeah we haven't done a Kickstarter or any crowdfunding campaign. I mean hopefully that's when those doors will start knocking. I mean getting it out there and the public has not been our goal. Our goal is to get the research and development down just to backtrack what he said about the FDA. You don't actually see any problems with the FDA or see any problems. And we're working with FDA specialist firms we understand. I can't hear that. So we're really not worried about you I really actually think what the diocese is protect the public and make sure that people that really are doing. I wouldn't want her. To think that our price is. Something that is just. Plain and I wouldn't make the claim that ISIS is measuring pain until I get scientific studies to identify that I would right now say that our device groups are not objective measures through multiple sensors that can be used to look at the inflammatory responses which we now process. So if we could look at the inflammation of the body as a pain cause Aljaz and were able to have measures that we could prevent scientific literature. Mary app with patient subjective Cecil as opposed to say this device never pain right going into the market as a claim that would be there in fact are public.

Saul Marquez: [00:09:56] No I totally get it and I agree. Jocelyn. It's the FDA definitely is a very necessary body regulatory body and I also agree that it's there to help the public so definitely not not suggesting.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:10:08] No I don't think you were I guess not correcting that. You know yes for drugs it is an onerous process and I I definitely have a lot of empathy. Drug companies they didn't have patents they didn't have moratoriums on their ideas generics could come along very quickly and put money into things that end up getting your product that you can make money back to the RNC put into it. And I know they spend millions and millions of dollars and. I have a lot of empathy for large drug companies Chinese products market everybody's trying to do what they do in their area of expertise. For sure

Saul Marquez: [00:10:42] For sure. Decim so so you're in the process of your of your research and you are in the middle of getting some potentially NIH grants going through. You know it's exciting times you guys are getting all your validation done. Can you give us an area right now that you're excited about that you're working with in your research.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:11:02] I think it's really exciting that the NIH is offering Pratte right now for a device to measure pain. I mean that is just so exciting. So we've been very busy over the last few weeks trying to become an US entity succeeded in doing that. Thank you. People's view is that advertising anyway it was very fast and easy and dance numbers and Emirates are starting with all the government agencies certainly wish I had somebody holding my hand walking me through at that time or trying your very best to succeed.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:32] That's awesome. Definitely wish you guys the best during that process and hope that you score that grant so you can move this forward. So Jocelyn let's pretend you and I are building a medical leadership course. What it takes to be successful in medicine. The 101 or the ABC of Jocelyn Cowie I'd like to write a syllabus for the listeners and it's for question lightning round session. We'll follow that by a book that you recommend to them you ready.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:11:59] Totally. So look you've got. Give it a shout here. I certainly have some interesting ideas about education. So

Saul Marquez: [00:12:05] All right let's do it. So what would you say. Jocelyn is the best way to improve healthcare outcomes.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:12:11] I would say applying it to data and looking at outcomes that can have analytics applied to the data that can be collected from all various answers that are coming into the market Rabel space is really exciting collecting data and showing data and then making it simple and easy for users to interface with that data. I don't think users want to have. That. I think it's more sending out a to rehash that and then there was that trash collection place can send an ambulance or send. A care provider to honor a family member to help with an elderly patient who might want to stay in their home but. Has some early dementia or Alzheimer's and need to be monitored not necessarily children living in that environment.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:58] What's the biggest mistake or pitfall to avoid.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:13:01] I think, thinking that is easy and thinking that it's going to be overnight. A lot of hard work. I wouldn't recommend it with the weak of Heart or spirit or mind.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:16] Absolutely. How do you stay relevant as an organization. Despite constant change.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:13:21] Keep up with it. Know what's going on the market. Go to Congress is see what other people are doing. Keep your fingers on the pulse. It's a moving target and it's moving fast and you don't know what's happening. We're not build a device that is going to be perfect and there.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:35] What is one area of focus that should drive everything else in your organization.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:13:39] Think making sure that the research and development team is doing what they need to do in a manner that will make sure that you are compliant making sure that you're keeping them happy sad and your job as a CEO of a startup company is to make sure you've got money to pay them. And that's a tough job. Think that being a female, being in the entrepreneurial space living in a small town. Very difficult I think you know in the Silicon Valley. I was a male CEO with a Ph.D.. Hi my name would be at ten thousand times easier. So I think that those are definitely barriers. But in the meantime you know if you want to keep your share value strong not selling shares ahead of time when you don't really need the money. So living on a shoestring can actually make getting most of your money instead of the extravagance. I find If I have money I'm going to spend that. And sometimes you spend money prematurely like buying a projector for example was five thousand dollars. It didn't work. They said it was manufacturing. As I said Now your circuit boards are made in China. They're not following ISO procedures. Semi replacement the replacement doesn't hurt. By the time I get my replacement the third replacement you're. Five thousand dollars in the hole and you never get to use it because now we're doing we're plugging our PCs into a big screen TV and that we're sitting on your table not to the projector but to the screen. So I think things change and buy ahead time that ends up being dysfunctional I would recommend that really on a shoestring does help you to be more budgetary and the constraining in your choices of purchasing decisions. Also keep your share of Alua. So yeah I think that That's advantageous in a way.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:22] Got it just and what book would you recommend to our listeners.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:15:25] What is it called The Creative Destruction of Medicine that's getting a little old now that Chasseur only air. Koppel is a leader. Don't know. Daniel craft has written any books. He's not a in and certainly yet sappin station starts talking about what's going on. You're going to have a hard time unless you're really aware of yourself what's going on Keeping Up with the dynamic changing right now in healthcare. Expedential is the big word singular the accidental medicines. It's I mean things are now very inexpensive to and there he can get onto the market very inexpensively. We're looking at 20 years ago with this product across from a thousand dollars to buy. We're looking at 150 Product and while also 100000. That is a huge exponential. Now something as all of the things even more things that we ever since 20 years ago.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:18] For sure Josslyn and listeners if you wanted to get an access to any of the books that Jason mentioned and links to her company and things like that just go to that c o w i e that's Jocelyn's last name you'll be able to find the show notes as well as links to any of the resources provided. Jocelyn before we conclude I would love for you to just share a closing thought with the listeners. And then the best place where they could get a hold.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:16:45] So my nickname. I don't like it a lot but it kind of sticks in first place so listeners I want to remember me they can think of Jocelyn Cowie, Awie Cowie It's like it just meant got to see from Cali and you have it kind of sense. So. Are my my Krass directly is Or you can also timely at the that's a Canadian provider, so that's my 2 email addresses.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:23] Wonderful and so what would your closing thought be. The listeners.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:17:27] Keep your spirits up tracking with what to do with your life. Keep your dreams alive. Don't let the fire burn out.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:35] Love it. Jocelyn, this has been great. Really appreciate you taking the time to walk us through your thoughts and the project that you currently have in hand. We we wish you the best in your research we hope you get this NIH grant. And looking forward to keeping in touch with you.

Jocelyn Cowie: [00:17:52] Thank you so much, Saul.

: [00:17:53] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

The Creative Destruction of Medicine: How the Digital Revolution Will Create Better Health Care 

The Best Way To Contact Jocelyn:

Episode Sponsors:


The Healing Art of Medical Massage with Jocelyn Cowie, CEO of ASSESSx Technology Ltd.


No comments exist

How Patients Can Show Us The Path to Better Healthcare Outcomes with Jack Barrette, CEO at Wego Health

How Patients Can Show Us The Path to Better Healthcare Outcomes with Jack Barrette, CEO at Wego Health

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez.

Saul Marquez: [00:00:18] Outcomes rocket listeners, welcome back once again to the outcomes rocket where we chat with day's most inspiring and successful health care leaders. I really want to thank you for tuning in today and I invite you to go to so you could give us an Apple podcast review. You enjoyed what you listen to today or if you've just been enjoying it in general love hearing from our guests as well as our listeners. And so today I have an outstanding guest for you. His name is Jack Barrette. He is the CEO for WEGO Helme. He's been in health care for quite some time but Wego health is a first online home for consumer health activists. Social media's most active 10 percent passionate people about helping others lead healthier lives. He's just done an incredible job of putting together his skills and technology as well as being at the forefront of all that is in health care to really create this amazing environment as well as a place where people can make an impact and get their voices heard. So what I want to do is open up the mike to jack so you could round up an introduction Jack welcome to the podcast.

Jack Barrette: [00:01:31] Thanks so great to be here. Yeah I have been in health care too long. As you said but Wego health is 10 years old this year which we're proud of. We like to think of ourselves as a 10 year old startup but we now have over 125000 patient leader members of our network around the country and around the world. So good to be here today.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:48] Now that's fantastic and you definitely done some major work to create a spark there for patient leaders. What got you into this business to begin with.

Jack Barrette: [00:01:58] I've been in healthcare Marketing Communications for my entire career. I was undergrad at Tufts and I actually my first job while I was still at Tufts I started working for a PR agency in Boston. And you know we had a number of different clients. Ira Pressley says about that when the Ringling Brothers circus was coming to town and come see the train full of animals and that was OK. And I went out and opened a hotel in the suburbs of Boston and we wrote about another Holiday Inn which is just crucial to mankind. But then I started doing work with the Tufts research Nutrition Center on Aging in Boston and I've met people who were there who were opposed to the health care professionals and the patients who were there who were not really interested in aging as it sees as a process. And I became fascinated and said Well this is something I could write about and I became passionate about it as a client spend way too many hours get in trouble for that. But since then I've always felt that she knew any about health talking about health is a passion for me at every level both personally and professionally.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:52] That's awesome. And so really appreciate your passion it shows and hear hearing your voice. What is it about this space that intrigues you and how is your current company WEGO health tackling that.

Jack Barrette: [00:03:05] As always tribu about how curious is its complexity and how it always has felt like I think Esther Dyson called it a hairball at one point right that it's there's so much to cut through to get to the point where we're actually just taking great care of patients and doing Herbet into focus on their wellbeing. An idea for acute disease treatment that there's just so much to figure out but so many problems to solve and I love solving problems. So that has got me involved with a particular way to get at those problems. I believe that the answer to virtually every problem is patients and every question you asked about health care is like what. Where does it come back to patients and it's instant to right. It's that this is really a work force. It's a passionate set of folks who are obviously the end users of house care but there's so much more they can do so much more to fix what's ailing health care but also to make it something that continues to reinforce why doctors couldn't do it in the first place. For the joy of taking care of people. So for me that's the fun part of solving problems in health care. There's plenty to solve.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:00] Yeah for sure Jack and maybe you could dive into how Wego health actually works because I had a chance to go through it. I think it's pretty cool but I want to the listeners to really get a feel for what you're doing over there.

Jack Barrette: [00:04:12] Sure. Well as I said at the outset we do health is a core a network of hundred twenty five thousand now patients leaders the folks who were the most active and organically passionate patients in the health care space. So these are the 4 percent who create 80 percent of the content online for example in the influencer space and our job is to empower and embed them into health care so they can get at fixing all these problems and contribute meaningfully directly to the health care system. Our most recent product that we're very excited about is we launched Wego health experts it's a platform that matches companies directly with our patient leaders as freelancers. What I hope you don't realize is that many patients had business lives before they got sick or even in the midst of a chronic illness they've also have tremendous business skills that can bring to the table. So by empowering patients to work alongside patient professionals or within side health care versus being just test subjects we think we can really fix a lot and that's what we're really focused on right now with our new platform WEGO health experts.

Saul Marquez: [00:05:09] I think that supercool Jack and what advice would you give to health care leaders today trying to engage with patients more help them.

Jack Barrette: [00:05:19] That's really good question because it's surprising how hard it feels to engage with patients who if you're in healthcare you could probably make more money somewhere else. You could probably do something that was a little easier or helped you have more vacations but it's still hard for people to connect with patients for real. And we spent a lot of time breaking through some of those barriers conscious and unconscious. Number one I would absolutely invite people to say treat patients as peers whenever you can find people who you see as peers and ask them to help solve real problems with you talking about problem solving a lot today. But that's a lot of what folks are afraid of is I want to hear your story as a patient that's important I want to be empathetic with you. But now I need to figure out how to get people through a discharge process faster. How can you help me with that. And a patient will give you prescriptive advice. How do I tell the world about the fourth new medicine on the market that may not be so exciting from a chemical perspective but for patients it's about the dosing or it's about something else that's important to their community. So ask patients for prescriptive real world advice to solve your real problems and they will help you. They'll show you the way they're not afraid they would rather be treated as equals and as a test of yours.

Saul Marquez: [00:06:21] That's really interesting Jack and I don't know you've gone into any facility or any hospital looking to apply this advice. Have you seen this type of advice be applied.

Jack Barrette: [00:06:34] It's interesting that the providers who the hospital companies have done a lot of patient satisfaction surveying that sort of thing but I see the CEOs said we're partnering with the personal accredited Health Alliance which has now matched up with canted health and Partners HealthCare a CEO in the Boston area and that's an organization that's really looking at ways that they can build new devices with patients to solve problems or create a patient advisory board around saying adherence to therapy. So they're going beyond the patients that survey that has been the ruler to say what how do we really get them inside and start fixing some things and that I think providers are where there's a most impetus to get this done but it's the rest of health care that also needs patients to solve problems are you if you build a new medical device or you've got to or you're a digital health company how do you drive adoption so the patients will will not just look at it try it and then stay with it after 21 days. Most apps fail right most after your phone or the back screen up after three weeks. So how do you solve that patients while you do it.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:32] Jack, you are the ultimate patient advocate. And I think it's so cool that you've decided to take this route and it's super empowering because like you said as a patient you have a life and you have a you have a career and then all of a sudden you become a patient and it's almost like you put on this cloak of like you're no longer human. Sometimes.

Jack Barrette: [00:07:53] We like to we hear about flip the clinical out which is a cool concept. We talked about flipped a patient think first of what they know as a professional as a peer as someone who can contribute to your organization whether or not they were ill and then think of their chronic illness and their experience from the inside of healthcare as a credential doesn't feel like a credential when you have asthma or or M.S. or diabetes but when you are working on a diabetes project and you're also a project manager or a designer you bring a whole lot of passion and understanding and expertise that you can't learn through a focus group.

Saul Marquez: [00:08:23] That's so interesting and and listeners if you're on a frontline or if you're in a leadership capacity think about this you know it's a small shift but small shifts could lead to pretty big things. I heard a stat somewhere. I don't know what it is exactly but the percentage of patients that recover that feel that their physician had empathy toward them is much higher. And so what can you do to be more empathetic go beyond that. How can you see this patient as your peer.

Jack Barrette: [00:08:50] Exactly exactly and my doctor I'm lucky is Danny sands so I have is very unusually collaborative physician who you founded is now the executive chair of the Society for participatory medicine of which we're also a proud sponsor. But for physicians to be able to look at patients as true collaborators to say you know go find this out for me go home and test this go home and look this up don't come back with a stack of everything you think I should know. But let's work together on your care. Make them your research staff. And I mean that in a in a collaborative way. Because that's I think physicians can get back to the joy of practicing medicine where it's not just basic training anymore because it can get that on the Internet. No one needs to have a definition of multiple sclerosis every wants to know what happens when it's relapsing remitting. And I've had it for 12 years and that drug isn't working anymore. Why is that happening. A good endocrinologist will work with folks to say this is this is how we address that is how we tackle that.

Saul Marquez: [00:09:39] For sure. Jack give me an example and the listeners of how you guys WEGO health have improved outcomes by doing what you do.

Jack Barrette: [00:09:48] I love that end point for so much of what we do and again I think it is bringing the voice of the patient not just as a voice but as a path to a better outcome is really what we pride ourselves in doing. We're you know we're a for profit company that looks like a nonprofit because we're always driving this mission of embedding that patient leader in there to say Okay where are you trying to get from point A to Point B we're the ones that are going to you. It's called WEGO health because we talk about we go forward we make progress and we're not a support group that discusses and and embraces and provides only emotional support which is so important. And there's a lot of folks do everywhere. But how do we get to that outcome. How do we move forward. How do we make that progress. That means applying the right patients leaders and for us it means many cases vetting the folks who are ready to do the right kind of work right next to you as a peer health care system and providing that support for the healthcare system to get toward that outcome faster.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:39] I love that. And you mentioned Dr. Sand's I had a chance to do practice with an MA at the conference and he had this crazy analogy that hasn't left me and I will never leave me like that. Like the car wash the car wash of health care you know health care too much like a car wash you go in they spray healthcare on you and then you come out the other side and you're going gonna have to come back and then spray more healthcare on you. Instead what Jack does. Wego help go together with your patients.

Jack Barrette: [00:11:06] And ask them to be the stewards of their own care and give them responsibility for that. I think we have to take patients that take responsibility as well for just letting someone else drive because you know I'm not paying necessarily directly I don't quite understand how I pay my doctors and present it to me as the experts so I'm not going to participate. You need to step up and be a part of it and patient leaders have been really the role models for that right. Showing people this is what happens when you talk to your physician. What happens when you collaborate you actually get a better outcome. We did an interesting survey of our patients leaders. We asked them how happy are you with your physician and you expect what each of the influencers who are really smart self educated. There are are not gonna like their doctors because they think they know everything. They gave me nine out of ten on a net promoter score and we asked them why and they said well the first guy wasn't listening to me so I went to another one and the second guy really didn't understand the latest science so I went another one. But this guy's fantastic. So what you find is that they knew how to find a physician who would collaborate and work with them and that's why they were happy. It wasn't the first position they bumped into was okay but a lot of patients do that. They will settle and they will find someone it's like any other relationship they define some with a partner and have chemistry and make an app.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:15] Wow. Yeah that's really cool. Tell us a little bit Jack about a time when you guys had a setback and what you learned about it.

Jack Barrette: [00:12:22] That's a really good question that and good health is definitely a fail fast culture. Maybe not feel fast enough sometimes. We launched a Celebi called we go health TV about 4 or 5 years ago when video was just coming onto the scene and YouTube. Believe it or not still somewhat Naze and it wasn't the second largest search engine in the world yet and we want to do Beaglehole TV as a channel for leaders to communicate with their audience and what we found was there are so many social media channels of communication channels from patient to patient that adding another one teaching to new technology early on. It's just you're not really understanding the workflow of the busy patient leader who's running a community of in many cases tens of thousands of other people with lots of questions flying at them through lots of different channels that don't need something else to do. They need another way to to be more effective and efficient if anything so I think the lesson we learned was Don't get ahead of ourselves. Be sure that we really and I think that's a lot of what medicine does sometimes is doesn't respect though the workflow of the patient. And it's one thing to say well you know take these pills seven times a day. Well that's never going to work for me and I'll be noncompliant as a patient. I don't want to say that. So I'll just kind of leave the office instead of it or something it doesn't work perhaps quite as well and I'm baps concerns but I'll give you something. I know you'll take every day and mixing with the workflow understanding the audience you're relating to not just from a patient to sedition basis but also even in business as we seek better outcomes say will the patients actually be able to do this along with the rest of their lives. As you said the carwashes or the car wash every day. Right. Once every couple of weeks but the rest of their lives go on to with them.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:58] Now that's really interesting and I love your fail fast fail forward culture. I think that's just the way that you've got to have that mentality to succeed in health care. Yeah absolutely. Give us an example of one of your proudest moments Jack in healthcare.

Jack Barrette: [00:14:12] I have to say that I am sitting in Washington D.C. at a hotel where we're having the first live presentation of the Wigo Health Awards tonight. And for me after 10 years it's a culmination of a lot of what we've done. We have these awards that are nominated and judged and chosen by the community to show their leaders that they appreciate them. And it's nice to be talking to you on the night when this is the first time we'll have done it in real life. Presentation they've been online. They've been they've been virtual for many years because our community largely is. But we have people from all over the world to Australia the UK and across the US who have flown in to receive their words tonight and for us it's just it's humbling and it's honoring and to be it shows that patients are feeling an empowerment to step up and see each other and celebrate the progress we've made because we have made progress. The patients are involved others are not patients. That's very true. Will always be true. But we've made great strides so I look at tonight as as a really proud moment I really look forward to it.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:06] That's so amazing Jack and I feel privileged to be here with you today. I feel the energy and I don't know how many people were there but I definitely feel the energy coming through.

Jack Barrette: [00:15:14] Well thanks. Yeah there's a lot of folks here and it's going to be it's going to be exciting. Oscars.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:19] I love that. I love that. So tell us a little bit about an exciting project that you're working on.

Jack Barrette: [00:15:24] Well one of things that we are we're excited about is is we talked about that Wego have experts platform which makes it easy for people to find their way to a vetted patient who can help them on that peer level. And we recently partner with a personal health alliance as I said and what we'd love about that is those large organizations that have been working with Intel and the innovation labs as well as we did another partnership recently with startup health 200 portfolio companies and the coolest digital health space and we're health Axelle which does a collaborative community of large and small players working together to solve problems and health in all of those organizations working with us are embedding patients directly into how they're building collaboration within the industry so we're excited about those partnerships because it gives patients a chance to be. I will say legitimized this this is a credible way for you to put people at the table with those big players who've paid to be a part of the organizations there. They see them as for moving and now those organizations said yes we want these patient leaders who are ready to get to work next to us at the table so that work of embedding our patients into the healthcare system to me is most exciting.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:29] I think that's really interesting so if I have a condition and I need to go have a procedure done I just go to Wego health experts and then somehow get tied up with somebody that is an expert patient and I can get advice from them.

Jack Barrette: [00:16:46] Well we got the experts is actually almost more of a B2B platform where our job is to vet the patient leaders who are ready to do work right to be the X designer or to be a social content builder or to or to help you conduct your market research study and to find those people within the patient leaders and then allow you as a small organization or a large one or a huge one to hire them as freelancers. So really we're building on that gig economy right where everyone hires freelancers real time up work or 5 or whatever it may be. But this is a very carefully vetted folks from our very large community who can work with you side by side. So if you were doing your dear example if you were looking to create a patient community around the change therapy for example and you wanted to have a support system that went around your online behavior change therapy program you might hire one of our folks to be the moderator of your community and to find other moderators as it grows or if you have a you have one condition area that you're focusing on his organization you want to create contact a new one. You want to go from Ouray over to diabetes. You would hire diabetes Deedar on our site. Who's ready to help you build that new capability. And they are reviewed and rated and they present their work expertise. Like any other professional would alongside their health credentials.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:54] That is super cool. And I think it's really great because why not tap into the folks that know how to engage these populations that have happened or invent the wheel.

Jack Barrette: [00:18:04] What a really bad analogy used but everyone seems to understand it as you know. If you were making the Nelson Mandela story you would probably hire Jack Paret a white guy to play the part right. I would try and I would feel passion about it but I wouldn't quite deliver that feeling. And why would you hire anyone other than a patient when you have side by side to professionals with the same expertise. One who's been there lived that survived. And can deliver the passion at the same time.

Saul Marquez: [00:18:29] I think that's so great Jack and kudos to you and your team for putting this together. It's so creative.

Jack Barrette: [00:18:34] We're really excited about we've gotten a lot of great response. We have over 200 companies in the platform since we launched in February with virtually no marketing. We have hundreds and hundreds of our of our experts are already as they are bringing people on slowly because we don't have the marketplace imbalance of a lot more consultants and companies ready to hire them but it is growing very fast word is catching on. These new partnerships are really going to help us.

Saul Marquez: [00:18:55] Supercool. So Jack let's pretend you and I are going to build a medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine today. It's a one course or the ABC of Jack Barrette and so we're going to write out a syllabus. There's for questions in a lightning round fashion and then we'll finish up with the book. You ready.

Jack Barrette: [00:19:13] Ok ready.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:14] All right. What's the best way to improve healthcare outcomes.

Jack Barrette: [00:19:17] Best way is to engage and hire patients to be a part of your organization working alongside you.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:23] What is the biggest mistake or pitfalls to avoid.

Jack Barrette: [00:19:26] Biggest pitfall to avoid is to sit inside a room with other folks who are talking about or to patients without talking without having them there with you at your side. And as a theme your I can tell

Saul Marquez: [00:19:38] Yup how to stay relevant as an organization despite constant change.

Jack Barrette: [00:19:43] That's absolutely a great question. We are causing looking at talking to our our own advisory board of fashion leaders and asking them where they see things happening what they do what shifts they feel and trying to stay ahead of that. And that means testing in the market getting out there and constantly asking the folks who are who are feeling what's happening out there versus the folks who are writing about it necessarily.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:03] What's one area of focus that should drive everything else in the organization.

Jack Barrette: [00:20:08] In the health care organization there. The only area of focus that should drive everything else of course is patient outcomes and hence your podcast. But the idea that that can become a platitude we make it something different. That putting patients to work alongside us feels like progress and gives us a sense that we are we're able to be businesses and be proud of that we're able to be a digital health company and be proud of me to prove our investors that we have a good idea as a business but also have patience alongside us that every day will remind us why we're doing what we're doing.

Saul Marquez: [00:20:35] Jack amazing points here on the syllabus definitely of course I would take what book would you recommend to the listeners here.

Jack Barrette: [00:20:43] There's a couple and I steal one from my previous guest of yours from Robin Farmanfarmaian whose name I just like to say but also who's really good and wonderful about her patient as a CEO. It's just a it's a seminal you know kind of from her perspective because she also has that credential and clout of an angel investor and it's a powerhouse entrepreneur and patient at the same time and that's she bodies the movement that we're talking about here in many ways is kind of one of those one of those touchstones are the patient leaders look at and that's the kind of thing you should do so her book is terrific I love her book from a more general perspective. I love the power of habit which his a book has been a little while now but it starts to talk about at work flow concept of how do we habituate good health behaviors how do we make people healthier for the long term even people with very serious illness want to have a habit of being healthier and feeling better and how do you how do you encourage that through ways that are natural and support them with with other patients and patient expertise versus trying to preach that people once they fall this list or else. And I think that so understanding what habit means I think is called health care.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:44] I love it. Jack some great books there. I will have that power of habit. Definitely read patient as CEO Robbins. Just amazing like you said and kind of embodies what you're doing there listeners don't worry about writing these things down. Just go to and that's B A R R E T T E and you'll be able to find all of the show notes as well as the links to Jack's company and the books that he just recommended. Jack before we conclude I'd like for you to just share a closing thought and then the best place for the listeners could get ahold of you.

Jack Barrette: [00:22:19] Sure. With closing thought is that patients will always be the answer. And in many cases that means that they will give you the answers if you if you ask. And it has been something that's kind of guided my company and my organization for ten years now. So when you worry about what to do when you're kind of in one story I would tell us when we get it we'll get a little ground down by you know clients being grumpy or this is market research study won't quite close on time then will be due as we go out and have a meet up with our patient leaders and when we get a chance to talk with them and work with them and ask them questions they bring us back to why we're doing what we do. So that's that's the thought I would close when when in doubt go with a group of patients they will they'll reempower that way to get a hold of of WEGO Health as we go house and from there you can leave after we get health experts platform as well where you go hire patient freelancers. It's freed us up an account try it out look around and see the amazing people you can hire to work with you side by side today.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:11] Outstanding Jack hey just want to say thank you once again you guys are definitely focused on improving outcomes and so excited to see where this goes. It just it just keeps getting better and better every time you do something new.

Jack Barrette: [00:23:23] Thanks, Saul appreciate that. Time frames from you.

: [00:23:29] Thanks for listening to the outcomes rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources, inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business
The Patient as CEO: How Technology Empowers the Healthcare

The Best Way To Contact Jack:

Episode Sponsors:

Healthcare Podcast

How Patients Can Show Us The Path to Better Healthcare Outcomes with Jack Barrette, CEO at Wego Health

No comments exist

Get Care from a Doctor on your Mobile Device, Anywhere Anytime, with Brendan Levy,  Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer at HeyDoctor

Get Care from a Doctor on your Mobile Device, Anywhere Anytime, with Brendan Levy, Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer at HeyDoctor

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:18] Outcomes Rocket listeners welcome back once again to the outcomes rocket podcast where we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. You know really want to thank you for tuning in again. It's awesome to hear the feedback for the show. It really makes our day when we hear it. Invite you to visit That is our Apple podcast page where you could leave a rating and review what you want about today's show because he is an outstanding guest. His name is Brendan Levy. Dr Brendan Levy. He's a co-founder and chief medical officer at HeyDoctor. He's got quite the resume with experience as a board certified family medicine is physician from the Georgetown University in D.C. and he's got just a wonderful experience in health care not only as a provider but also as an entrepreneur. And so without further ado I just want to open up the mic to Brendan for him to fill any of the gaps in that intro. Brendan, welcome to the podcast.

Brendan Levy: [00:01:22] Saul thanks. Having me. It is a pleasure to be here. Thank you for that glowing introduction.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:27] Absolutely my friend. And you know I just wanted to ask you you've been in it for a while. What got you in the medicine to begin with.

Brendan Levy: [00:01:33] I think that nosal the sound of it cheesy English I apologize but I think it's interesting to find out what people care about what makes them tick and find out ways that you can be either adviser and be there to kind of help them understand the science and how they can live their best lives. And Oprah speak.

Saul Marquez: [00:01:49] Love it man. Now I think it's great that I don't think it's cheesy at all. You know I think it gets to the heart of why you decided to be a practitioner. And I think it's pretty cool so much easy man. It's good. What would you say. Brendan actually before we get into that I want to ask just for the audience so that they know a little bit more about HeyDoctor I don't want to make any assumptions. Tell us a little bit about what you guys are focused on at HeyDoctor.

Brendan Levy: [00:02:14] Yes and the idea is there's a lot of reasons that people go to the doctor where you know they kind of know that a doctor is just going ask them a couple of minutes of quick questions and the question is kind of what's the point of some of these visits could you not find a better way to do them more efficiently so that you both save the patient time and you also save the Doctor time. So for some you know classic examples to be like hey I need to refill my birth control or I'm a woman I have a urinary tract infection both of which are extremely common needs. Or maybe you're traveling you need malaria medicine. So instead of going into the doctor's office wasting a couple hours or instead of even doing on video we say let's just ask you the questions and then if your case is simple that will say you know yes no or what the appropriate treatment is for cases that are more complex than we can spend more time with them. What kind of is very unfortunate about the current healthcare system is that as a doctor I'm spending the same 15 minutes with patients that have a cold as have a new diagnosis of cancer say is let's have doctors focus on the complicated cases. That way we can do other cases kind of very efficiently in a very high quality way.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:17] I think that's so cool and so are things picking up for you guys starting to get some traction on the app.

Brendan Levy: [00:03:23] Yeah we're actually seeing quite a few more patients than we expected. Thanks. Just a few kind of pickups and tweets out there and some advertising. We also power some other providers as a software solution. So so far so good.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:37] Man that's awesome. I think it's worthwhile the efforts that you're making here. You know you probably know better than most. As a as a provider the pain that goes into you know these visits for the patients as well as a provider you know we feel like we've got to take into consideration as we work to improve outcomes the quadruple aim. And I think your efforts here are not only tailored to better the lives of patients but also the practitioners. Can you give us an example of how you guys have done that for either or both.

Brendan Levy: [00:04:07] Yeah. And give good example. You know I actually just got off the phone with a patient. I'm not really happy here but some of that had migraines or which are contraindication to certain types of birth control. Now she's been getting birth control for years but nobody had asked her that I'm sure because you know these doctors are in a huge hurry. Get a lot of paperwork to do so with this format. It's nice because we can kind of take ask questions of the patient as we want or we need to. But then you can also just put all that information right up in front of a doctor and they don't have to do any paperwork. They can just make the right clinical decision as additionally guided by software to help them kind of know what is the latest best evidence for that decision.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:45] I think that's really awesome. I'm getting through this book called principles by Ray Dalio and he kind of walk through some of the things that he did to have success. And in light of that he attributes to not only just his decision making as a person but that decision support that he is able to get through algorithms and computers and what you're doing here you and your company is really just targeted at that and just using computers as decision support.

Brendan Levy: [00:05:13] Exactly. I mean I think you know the question is really how do you surface the the inputs that are going to make a decision on in a way that's efficient in a way that lets you just never get to make a decision make it quickly and make it safely. So that's difficult we're trying to do. Also I definitely do read the book because they're about the fifth person Joe recommended to me. Right.

Saul Marquez: [00:05:32] There you go. That's a must. And it's also an audio so you could also listen to it which is what I'm doing and it's just. Yeah. About one fourth of the way through and an outstanding one. So listeners if you have not read that principles by Ray Dalio it's one to pick up. If you're looking to make serious moves in health care even though he's a finance guy it really applies to all areas of the achievements. Ok Brendan.

Brendan Levy: [00:05:58] Actually I';l try to pause you there for one second. Sure on the topic of finance I think that there's a lot we can learn in medicine from other sectors. You know if you look at the average EMR if I want to find out about something as basic as some one's day birth oftentimes it's five clicks away when we are making the software we have designers and doctors in the room so that you know are kind of trying to emulate is like a stockbroker screen or something we see all the information you need on one screen. Don't have a high don't go digging for it. Show me what I need to know to make decisions I'm trying to make to help the station.

Saul Marquez: [00:06:31] You know what a great point. I really think that's such a great point Brendan and totally so. And it's cool that you guys are trying to emulate that and why not be able to implement in such a way as finance into healthcare so very very appropriate. Man thanks for calling that out for very well. And so I love these conversations because they're all targeted toward improvement right. Like we improve our businesses we improve patient interactions and outcomes. Give us an example Brendan of a time when something didn't go your way. It could be while you were practicing it could be with HeyDoctor a setback. And what you learn from that.

Brendan Levy: [00:07:09] Yeah this is. First of all are great behavioral interview question and one that I always struggled with because certainly many things have not gotten my way. But it's always hard to call them out for probably some repressed slightly but I say hey doctor you know some of the biggest challenges are how you get people to understand what this model is because I think that many people have had experiences with Stadio telemedicine and that you know frankly I gigaton as income translates a lot of the same problems that you see in the doctor's office. It's a little awkward and is kind of inefficient for both the doctor and the patient. So I think one kind of step back I've had is definitely a great learning experience is how do you explain what you're trying to do when it is significantly different from the status quo. And partly I've just learned that by kind of hearing doing my best in forums such as this to explain what we're doing and why we're doing it and then hearing kind of how people understand that and kind of parroting that back yeah.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:59] And so during that process what would you say was learning and maybe an improvement that you made.

Brendan Levy: [00:08:06] Yeah it's partly learning how people I think think doctors think and I think that patients maybe. I think about this but something like a huge eye for example is a type of condition or a woman's urinary tract infections extremely common thing and it can be expressed very simply in a one page algorithm like do you have this symptom. Yes or no. Do you have that symptom. Yes or no. I think that explaining to patients that oftentimes we as physicians are just walking you through these kind of decision trees. And so what we want is for you to provide information that helps us recommend that outcome is something I've learned to explain. That is kind of how I come from times thinking so that people understand what types of inputs are what steps data they need to provide for us to help provide the best advice for them. Second I'm asking you this question. The reason is because I want to know make sure recommend this antibiotic or this other antibiotic.

Saul Marquez: [00:08:55] No it makes a lot of sense. And so you know listeners think about that. You've got to put yourself in the shoes of the people that you're communicating with to get an idea out. And oftentimes we make assumptions. You know we make assumptions that the people that we're speaking to know what we know and we got to bring it down a couple notches and walk them through to help them understand and this is a great example that you bring up Brendan you know like there's a lot of acronyms in healthcare. Let's not assume that patients or people know the acronyms let's use the actual words. And you did that right. You said. And then you followed through with the actual urinary tract infection. Just a simple example but yeah I think it's a beautiful call out. And so you had that you've been cleaning up the game here. And so now you're getting some traction with the app. What would you say one of the proudest experiences you've had to date with it is.

Brendan Levy: [00:09:50] I will say that some of the proudest experience I have are just hearing I'll say it is a real joy getting the feedback. You know it is something that originally I thought I had missed when I was leaving my primary job is kind of an office based clinician but having this kind of ongoing text conversation with patients in some way is even more satisfying because instead of just writing the prescriptions and that's the last time I see this person for six months now I can get a message the next day about how they're doing it's going well great. I can answer solid question over tax which obviously is a much more convenient modality if the patient is really in some ways kind of deep in debt because you know it's kind of like you're texting your friends oftentimes the other contacts and using texting. So now that same way your position can be available to answer questions for you. So finding that that does work for people has been incredibly rewarding.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:39] That's pretty cool. Are you guys finding that there is a particular demographic or age group that gravitates toward this or is it pretty broad.

Brendan Levy: [00:10:47] Currently you know I think it is pretty broad but currently I would say women kind of 20 to 35 as our chief demographic and I think largely because they're comfortable with the technology. Some houses were used or kind of Scheifele useful for that population. We definitely hope to broaden into a kind of primary care writ large because I really think like something approaching half of the visits you will go into the doctor for are just kind of quick checklist visits even things where it's like you got diagnosed with high blood pressure six months ago and now you're going to come back into all they're going to do is measure blood pressure and ask you how you're feeling. What is the point of going in for that type of visit when really you can just gather all the day at home with a smart blood pressure cuff for example.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:29] Or you could just go to CBS or Walgreens check it out. Glad didn't there. Yeah yeah. All LA you go get you know a Starbucks right across the street. Exactly. That hopefully in the long term we're saving the health care system money. Hope you're getting somebody healthy at Starbucks and then maybe you can spend more money on things that I think really matter of society like healthy eating and other things that would help prevent these problems from ever occur.

Saul Marquez: [00:11:50] Yeah for sure. It makes a lot of sense. And so within the system. Brendan are you actually is a health care provider either practitioner or solo practitioner or a system. Are they able to to develop codes and bill for things on here or is this all being done. Like who builds for these visits these digital visits.

Brendan Levy: [00:12:13] Yeah that's a great question. So currently because we can do it so efficient we just say you know we're not going to buy insurance we just say you know birth control refills ten dollars to have a visit is 20. So we keep kind of all it visits very low cost but being very efficient. Ultimately I think there's a lot of case to be made for you know a large I think really an insurer ultimately where you can say hey you know instead of someone going into urgent care which costs two hundred dollars. The average cost a thousand dollars. Why not solve their problem at home which is more Kimveer for them. It saves the payer money. I think fundamentally could kind of alter the way the system is actually run.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:48] That's pretty cool. Can somebody use a health care savings account.

Brendan Levy: [00:12:52] Not yet but that is something we're actively working on. Oh and I should say actually in answer to your last question our other vision would be you know a lot of health systems tend to move slowly from a technological standpoint for a lot of reasons but we certainly are talking to about potentially just white labeling this app so they could then attach it to their own records. I love you both follow ups and visits.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:14] I think that's awesome. And then develop the seat CPT codes lower your cost. And hey that's a way to get the job done. Make it can mean for patients and increase your profitability while you're at it.

Brendan Levy: [00:13:26] Exactly. Hit a few aims.

Saul Marquez: [00:13:27] I love it man. I love it. I think that's pretty cool. And so you know just thinking through the possibilities with this it's exciting. And with patient deductables gone through the roof listeners. You're a patient I'm a patient. Before anything were people and now with deductibles being so high options like Hey doctor are becoming a real deal. So something to think about as you explore your healthcare options don't box yourself into your employer sponsored program. Look outside of that because right now the innovations that Brendan and his team and others are building are aiming toward keeping you healthy before you get sick at less money. So pretty cool stuff that you're doing up around and for sure.

Brendan Levy: [00:14:10] Thank you very much.

Saul Marquez: [00:14:10] All right. So let's focus on one of the current innovations that you're working on something that you're excited about today. Maybe within Health Doctor maybe within something else but something that you're excited about today. Brendan.

Brendan Levy: [00:14:22] Yeah what I'm most excited about is taking this to what I think is the next logical step where you say okay let's process first just 10000 patients have doctors look at it evaluate it based on existing clinical algorithms now take out all those people did you know for example see if that urinary tract infection got better. See what lab outcomes we got through our partners class or lab or feed that data back and then say what questions should we have asked that would have gotten us to the diagnosis faster for example or that would have led to even better outcomes. So we're actually pursuing both how do we integrate machine learning into this technology so that you're actively highlighting in ways that leverage technology which patients deserve the most or not deserve which patients could benefit most from additional attention and then potentially rolling down into an academic study to find what are just better treatment algorithms that the whole community can use.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:13] That's exciting. Taken at the next step.

Brendan Levy: [00:15:15] Yeah, I'm excited. It requires a good deal of work but I think we're getting there. Step by step.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:20] That's awesome and you know what the pool of patients that you have going through this and once you get to that number that you're aiming you'll have a really nice sample size to start making those distinctions so that's pretty exciting man.

Brendan Levy: [00:15:30] Thank you.

Saul Marquez: [00:15:31] All right. So Brendan I think this is really cool and I think the listeners could learn a lot from you. So what I want to do is let's pretend you and I are building medical leadership course on what it takes to be successful in medicine today. It's a 101 or the ABC of Dr Brendan okay. And so I've got four questions for you. There are going to be lightning round style so I'll ask you the questions you give me some lightning round answers and then we finish up with a book that you recommend for the listeners. You ready.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:00] I'll do my damndest.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:02] What's the best way to improve health care outcomes.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:05] I think it is by examining the data from the patient's perspective examining both what are the patients actually trying to get care for and what are the outcomes that they actually care.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:14] What is the biggest mistake or pitfall to avoid.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:17] Doing things the way that health care has done initially and not find a way to escape at least some of the constraints and are heavily regulated industry.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:26] How do you stay relevant as an organisation. Despite constant change.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:30] I would say that you must embrace the constant change. I wish I had a better answer for that but I think that's the simple truth.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:36] Good let's run with it and what is one area of focus that drives everything else in your organization.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:42] Is how can you use the gains that we've made in technology to make medicines better in a way that goes beyond clicks and other kind of superficial changes to our practice.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:52] Finally Brendan what book would you recommend to the listeners as part of the syllabus.

Brendan Levy: [00:16:56] This is a bit outside of medicine but I will say that I just finished the book Hamilton which is both a fascinating and fabulous read. I think a great learning story of someone that broke a lot of boundaries and set up some very interesting systems great learners for healthcare.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:09] I think that's cool and a great parallel there. Another one. Brendan you're just constantly taken us out of healthcare, Finance and theatre. But I think that's what we need to be doing so great recommendation. So listeners don't worry about writing any of this down go to outcomesrocket.healthcom/heydoctor you are going to find all of the show notes as well as links to the resources that Brendan put here together for you along with the syllabus that we just created. So time flies when you're having fun friends. Brendan before we conclude I would love to just hear you share one closing thought with the listeners and then the best place where they can get a hold of you

Brendan Levy: [00:17:53] One cause thought would just be anyone involved in medicine to continue to challenge the existing status quo. Our field is a slow moving one but to explore new options that they're popping up all the time given the chance. And if you need to get hold of Hey doctor is the website. Download the app and let us know how it goes.

Saul Marquez: [00:18:12] Outstanding. Brendan hey I'm going to download this app because I'm really curious now and hope listeners do to think outside the box. This is one way to do it and just want to say thank you again Brendan for taking the time for being on the show really appreciate it.

Brendan Levy: [00:18:27] Thank you so much for having me it was wonderful.

: [00:18:32] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rocket podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes, resources ,inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

Principles: Life and Work

Hamilton: The Revolution

The Best Way To Contact Dr. Brendan:

Episode Sponsors:

Healthcare Podcast

Get Care from a Doctor on your Mobile Device, Anywhere Anytime, with Brendan Levy,  Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer at HeyDoctor

No comments exist

Why Canary Health is Leading the Way in Self-management in Healthcare with Adam Kaufman, CEO at Canary Health

Why Canary Health is Leading the Way in Self-management in Healthcare with Adam Kaufman, CEO at Canary Health

: [00:00:01] Welcome to the Outcomes Rocket podcast where we inspire collaborative thinking, improved outcomes and business success with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders and influencers. And now your host, Saul Marquez

Saul Marquez: [00:00:18] Welcome once again to the outcomes rocket podcast where we chat with today's most successful and inspiring healthcare leaders. I invite you to go to outcomes rocket dot com slash reviews where you could rate and review what you think of today's episode because we have an amazing guest today. His name is Adam Kaufman. He is the president and CEO at Canary health. He's got a really long track record of success but at Canary health they are the leading provider of digital health self-management programs which includes a CDC approved online Diabetes Prevention Program a chronic disease self-management program in an exclusive partnership with Stanford University's Education Center they're doing some really interesting things to help improve outcomes and that is why we wanted to have Adam on the show. So Adam please fill in any of the gaps in that intro and welcome to the podcast.

Adam Kaufman: [00:01:10] Surely, Saul, thank you. It's a real pleasure to speak with you and share the insights that we have. I think the only thing I'd add to that is that by way of background I'm a health economist by training I worked in applied statistics so I'm actually you know I realized later that was an attorney when I was in grad school. I'm a data scientist so it's been interesting to see the power of data inside the healthcare and also somewhat humbling as I look at human history and it reminds me of the ability we have and certainly are the canary health and marrying technology which is really focus on human centered design and engaging people. So I'd just add that I come at it from a sort of I know this but early in my career that kind of data and analysis solve it all and realized how surprising and most clinicians would have started there. And that's not going to be sufficient. It takes a lot more to really engage people.

Saul Marquez: [00:02:09] That's a really great insight Adam and appreciate you sharing that Adam. I'm sure when you when you realized that it was just a huge aha moment.

Adam Kaufman: [00:02:16] Yeah I wish I could say it was like one moment I maybe I'm a little bit slow sometimes that over time that is sort of like wait a minute you're like you know I think health care what is the problem. I mean we certainly work on it for a long time the about doing something to someone. And maybe now is with someone but in my case for doing is for them and letting them and we and there's a sort of moment of humility that we all have to trust that someone knows what matters to them and they can lead that journey and they'll get a better outcome better quality of life. And we have a system that will get healthier happier people and use less health care. But it was right when they turned on and there was a series of reminders none of which are more powerful than the chance. We have talked with our participants in the and the people we've interacted with and remember that it's a part of their life. It's an emotional journey it's not just you'll have therapy. I had a disease or multiple is it all this and all the other aspects. So I wish I could say it was one single innovation in life but certainly it took me a little bit of time to come to it.

Saul Marquez: [00:03:28] No it's great and it's it's interesting to hear the journey and couple of things come to mind. Adam that I'm curious about. What got you into the business of healthcare. And to tell us a little bit more about the name canary health and why you named it that I'm kind of curious about that.

Adam Kaufman: [00:03:43] Yeah sure, let me let me start with the second question. Canary health is a loose allusion to the story of the canary in the coal mine. And for those listeners who don't know it was common practice for years to bring a canary into a mine. One of the big rigs in mining was the release of methane gas and that had become explosive and one of the great innovations in requiring visual testing all the time in the hundreds was that unfortunately or fortunately I guess a bird and canary figure is more sensitive to methane. So these are warning signal that something dangerous is happening and so they actually haven't bird in a cage and you know the birds started getting sick and even die. That was a signal to get out of the mine something. Right. So for us we really wanted that moment before something becomes catastrophic and we think that there is a great opportunity to engage folks earlier in their disease path earlier in their trajectory and prevent that progression prevent that catastrophic event. So we don't we know on that story have we. But we thought about what we wanted to be and what we wanted to represent which is I mean preventing that catastrophic.

Saul Marquez: [00:04:54] So that's right. Yeah I love the analogy it's powerful it's I never knew the full story I always I know what the analogy means but I didn't know that's exactly how the miners did it. So how fascinating. That's really cool.

Adam Kaufman: [00:05:08] Yeah. What was surprising to us. I mean we always knew it was ending until it was still common practice in my mind. So again the digital I mean now there are gas meters and it's sort of an oddity anyway you know for a century is a solution that requires some digital technology. So the way I came to healthcare kind of to have figures of that my parents are physicians. I had both seen patients but also worked as sort of a system level. So kind of you know around the dinner table it not just stories about individual cases but also why society works in a certain way when we don't let me like healthy or healthy. And there was always something I was interested in but kind of had a whole thousand engineers and I never went to work in the .com world. Nothing to do with health care. Kind of thinking about how the old Internet businesses and all that are a number of years when guys are interested in statistics I was saying earlier in search of data in economics feel and I thought I'd be a professor someone that's right. Really. You monkeys. Yeah. My Ph.D. in economics started in what people would call behavioral economics is kind of applied gave you a really nice mathematical theory and economics and a lot of it much more apply ended up doing in statistics writing my dissertation around health care outcomes. And this is right around sort of early stages of Obamacare and just by the part of that transformation. After teaching for a couple of years went to work for a media company that combines television access tools and print media even to build quality improvement programs. So that was my early take. How do you know the impact that people were saying oh edgy you know Atlanta what we're doing is an area.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:01] That is so cool and a really interesting journey that you've taken. So tell me a little bit more Adam about what you believe. Every healthcare leader today needs to be focused on what's that hot topic.

Adam Kaufman: [00:07:14] I think there's probably three if I could and I'm in a.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:17] Let's dive deep, man. Let's dive deep. That's what you do.

Adam Kaufman: [00:07:21] Forget the economists I mean first would say I think the move to value is critical and it is not a single thing we're all process especially in the U.S. are transforming I'm sure the other guests. Yes I know I'm talking about from fee for service the payment verbally and that underlie this sort of massive shift in the way healthcare is organized. So any leader whether it's the delivery side the insurance side by side needs to think about how healthcare is going to organize itself to deliver better value. And that's really what we ask clinicians to do what's called pay for anything important. So I think that's one big piece.

Saul Marquez: [00:07:59] Just to just kind of dive in for a second you know I feel like just looking across the healthcare provider system and the incentives that are given it feels like a lot of providers are still being very fee for service oriented. What are your thoughts on that. What's it going to take to actually make that shift.

Adam Kaufman: [00:08:19] Yeah great sensitivity to the challenge providers have they got more than what contract they want to practice medicine in one way and it's not going to be sufficient. If one insurance companies get 10 percent of their patient populations I'm going to pay this way the. I mean most people would die and I would agree that Medicare is going to have to play through the dominant force and change that I think the ACOs have started doing it I think the program the alternative payment model now and you're even hearing now you know a goal. I can't remember 2- 4 years 60 percent of payments will be tied to sort of alternative value based payments. I think you'll see two raise. I think you'll see the of store or classic palpitation show and sort of putting all the risk and opportunity on the providers and then the end is being all about how you provide an alternative path. There is still fee for service. But we're going to layer value and we're going to start doing more. And I think those will converge. I need to say a little bit longer and maybe we would have thought a couple years ago. But the big shows are starting to see this transformation and CMS I think is at the forefront of it. And then the commercial payers. It seems like and I don't see it directly in a service delivery organization or payer but as we talk to both sides the model and the alternative payments to the very commercial they're trying it now.

Saul Marquez: [00:09:47] Appreciate the insight. So you feel like the basis for these changes are there and it's in motion. It will get there but it's it'll get there. Ultimately.

Adam Kaufman: [00:09:57] Yes. And I'm a California guy. Southern California hit by sort of training and health care experience and so you know the futures are here in Southern California. I think most. Yeah and the fact is rehab. Yes. So the it feels like you know a for those listening. I. I've got a certain lens on it but it does feel like we talk about a home outside of California is beginning to move that way. Street is the same all over the country. But certainly I think that's a model that the federal government is seeing moving away more. And so I think you don't get there what it looks like in the interim is what we're all trying to figure out.

Saul Marquez: [00:10:36] Got it. All right. You said he had three right. So what would be the other to shift to value of value.

Adam Kaufman: [00:10:41] I think the move towards really leveraging data is a huge part of what's going on. And I think a lot of people both in and out that I'm certainly a consumer of health care and more than that. But I think the third one is really where we Canary focus which is now increasingly because we've built these systems because we're now compensating our providers for it and Mangia to no interactions for our colleagues because we now have a lot of benefits. I think we have a really unique opportunity to put the consumer back center. Here. So I really do think this move towards patients centered or person centered care this idea that someone should control their journey and activated consumer deciding what matters to him or how that makes them there and are driving that journey is going to be the key element to hide the rest of it ever and alternately while we care about outcomes and there are really what we should care about is the people getting what they want. And often it is very alive. So there's very few people want to say and want to spend more money on health care but they're not it sounds the same. We have orphan interact thousands of consumers around and self-management and it is interesting however what matters to you how you organize your life and your health to get what you want. And there's never anything inconsistent with Bell but it's not exactly the same right. No one wakes up in the morning and says I'm worried about my A-one sea level and diabetes I'm worried about getting sick or I'm calling in that I have my relationships. And so if we can shift the system so that person's back at the center I think we'll get one. So for us the third piece of that major trend that's where we spend our time and canary needs to go hand in hand with the other two major elements to get the outcome we want as an individual.

Saul Marquez: [00:12:30] Adam that's interesting why don't you give the listeners an example of how can we help you and your team have created results improved outcomes through what you've done there.

Adam Kaufman: [00:12:40] Yeah. So let me share it very individually and then I can share some of the same. So you said that you know we're very fortunate to work with incredible researchers out of Stanford University I believe researcher there is a woman who has dedicated her life to this conference herself in case more. There's a lot of imagining what they do. One of the things that strikes me is the way that they constructed a process how someone set a goal in place. And it seems intuitive. But there is this balance that I hadn't made a sort of ambitious enough and they are not meaningful but also close enough and understand what happens. Sealable so there's a sort of elegant simplicity they have and how they help people. And what strikes me is when you look at this I will often see action plans and I'm reminded of a particular artist who has multiple chronic conditions diabetes a rare rare condition or inner year on years. And when you asked her what manner the first thing was about getting control of her life and why from a healthy Ahwaz she just didn't feel like she had control. And so the first action plan she said was about how she could talk to herself. And there's nowhere it's sort of classic health care is the first thing you help someone with is you know how do you have a conversation with yourself. What was neat to on the law. I'm going to get a hearing aid. I'm going to take better care of myself. And so it reminds me that we need to empower that person to first what we've seen now and expand that and again this is very exciting new research that our colleagues Sanford conducted with and with a thousand people with diabetes went into our digital version of standard program 300 of the in one city in person so we really we know from choice and what they were able to show was a year after the program remarkable improvement in diabetes outcomes is named by A-one C which is the main measure for that. But what really led to it was incredible reductions in the rates of depression there. Here's the medications a better sort of self advocacy and confidence that someone could actually control it. And how Howard the has a short period of self-management support showed outcomes a year out Amsellem and Stanford has published the clinical results of this study. So they've actually demonstrated that a peer review and very shortly they'll be talking about the impact it had on healthcare utilization and cost. And so you started a very human level and it actually demonstrated to add a population level critical outcomes

Saul Marquez: [00:15:22] What a great example Eidelman listeners something to consider each and every one of you is an individual. And this idea of self-management. We all have our own Canary and so we've got to figure out what that canary is and like Adam was just saying you know this this patient that just wants to connect with their spouse. Now what is your hot button that is going to be the domino that makes the rest of them fall for your health. And it seems like Adam you guys are doing it so well. What's the secret sauce. How do you guys get to that thing that makes everything else tick.

Adam Kaufman: [00:15:57] I mean they sort of work as you will at am remembering that the individual is what matters and I been to numerous times we've sat with Kate Lorig the research from Stanford on just about language and this little thing. I assume you sound like you're telling someone what to do and you're telling them what matters. And there's a very subtle distinction but it goes to the words we use to the way the tool works. And so we try very hard and probably haven't achieved it but I say the secret thing is we never tell someone when we do a lot of work to build a framework where there's models that are here they have had your stories coming from you then you're not going to achieve it. And then we do a lot of work to help support all but I guess maybe that's the one thing we don't know what's there for you now. Yeah I think that it could be and have a ton of support when you take it but you've got to decide that.

Saul Marquez: [00:16:56] I think that's beautiful. And just even at the beginning Adam when you were kind of discussing the idea of OK we do health care to people or are we do health care with people or do we do it for them and provide them the support. It's something that I notice that you do. You're very sensitive to the word that you use and the meaning that you give what is happening. And so I really appreciate your thoughtfulness and in your approach and I think this will be very insightful for the listeners and the viewers.

Adam Kaufman: [00:17:24] Well it's been a pleasure to share the insight and hope it is for them.

Saul Marquez: [00:17:30] So what would you say a mistake or setback that you've experienced that has given you some huge pearls of wisdom in what you do.

Adam Kaufman: [00:17:38] It's a good question. The road is never kind of you know the ground up into the right and it always is always. I think and still believe it so I hate to say it's sort of a given setback. I think we have accepted that to a large extent health care still thinks about kind of these vertical silos by engaging in disease or physiological system. And so we will be willing self-management and we have the solution that actually we're supporting so many regardless of what anything you haven't worked and we know that the market has already served this horizontal idea of self-management is probably my thing. So what we've been working on for months and years really and what we'll be looking for is to our management plan for inside services a day much more easily into diabetes services or other conditions and not the windmills to use that old expression if you will in healthcare to see the kind of people independent diseases that they help in framing health and get more basic than what matters. So I say a little bit of a challenge from the go to market strategy and the way we've encountered healthcare is so oriented around diabetes cancer as opposed to probably each of those things at the center of your person. So we're no way of ending that kind of thing about impacting our services in the way that health care is still thinks.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:10] That's pretty cool and you know one of the things. So for the entrepreneurs listening to this you know something to consider you know when you when you build your product or service how do you position it. You know and Adam's been very thoughtful about that. Adam your your particular solution. Who pays for it.

Adam Kaufman: [00:19:25] Is designed to go to the payer so often the insurance companies and self-insured employers growing to hours today the today's providers. But we really focused on those folks who essentially have the insurance.

Saul Marquez: [00:19:39] Yeah and makes a lot of sense. And it's funny not funny but interesting because there's a lot of great ideas out there and oftentimes what happens is they they run into problems because they don't get strategically positioned on who's going to pay for it and then the ideas die and some so glad that you've done such a great job of positioning in a way that's that's you know been successful.

Adam Kaufman: [00:20:00] Yeah I'm having one of the things for the Offner about their budgeting and health care is not a transparent process. I used to work in the Internet world saying about new models and the challenges there were much more technological. When you deliver a new immaturely groovy to whatever the process was will always are. So I don't mean to me and I know that all that. If you can demonstrate that they have health care because there's so many competing priorities because it's partly driven by regulation is partly driven by you know in your priorities has an academic feel in some sense in on. There's all this are the same wire. So it is always very tricky to figure out how budgets are allocated reality is saying and then we just kind of figured out for oneself but that doesn't translate necessarily to another by the other part the countries of the world. So a lot of whole we are with where strategy is you know it's trial and error in some degree and law in a. Where are you.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:13] Now really cool thanks for saying that and boas you say one of the proudest moments that you guys have experienced to date here with canary health.

Adam Kaufman: [00:21:21] I think probably it's a moment we have every week. So you know I can't really think of one of the nights that are in our company and we share a story of at least one participant.

Saul Marquez: [00:21:32] Love it.

Adam Kaufman: [00:21:33] It's a credible to see you know as I see it more. Some of our team is interacting with foreigners and all the time. We're a good part of our team that's young I think that is doing support helping shape and so that moment where I get a chance to see the team and we all see it and to be able to do that that changes our people incredibly powerful in that moment. Every and often those stories were captured on video as you can see the person sometimes or just read to know that no way in hell that one person and see that story when you know that know it's more like thousand people.

Saul Marquez: [00:22:15] That's beautiful man. My wife is in the pacemaker business and she's a clinical specialist. Then she comes home and she tells me this stories about a little lady or a little man that rehash some memories. But you know was having pain and she just comes back lit up and these little things that you could do that make such a big difference. And it sounds you guys are doing it daily. And I love what you've done Adam kudos to your leadership style and kind of leading your team over there of making it a point to bring up the reason why you guys are doing this on a weekly share and for the leaders listening to this. What are you doing to build your culture within your organization. Adam's given us a really great example right share patient stories are what are you doing what can you do so. Time flies when you have fun. This has been a blast. So here's a part of the podcast where we build a syllabus for the listeners it's the 101 of Adam Kaufman how to be amazing at health care. And so I've got four questions for you lightning round style we'll go through those and then we'll finish it up with a book that you recommend for the listeners. Ready.

Adam Kaufman: [00:23:17] All right, let's do it.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:17] Awesome. What is the best way to improve health care outcomes.

Adam Kaufman: [00:23:21] Put the person back in the center.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:23] What is the biggest mistake or pitfall.

Adam Kaufman: [00:23:26] To avoid feeling that you've got the right answer the first.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:29] How do you stay relevant as an organization. Despite constant change.

Adam Kaufman: [00:23:35] Be agile.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:35] And finally what is the one area of focus that should drive everything else in your company.

Adam Kaufman: [00:23:40] Hope you can edit out the silence. I think that the one area of focus should always be are you improving the consumer side of whatever might be in a way that matters.

Saul Marquez: [00:23:55] Love it and Adam finally what book would you recommend to our listeners on this syllabus.

Adam Kaufman: [00:24:01] I have to pick the book the innovators precription from Clay Christensen and his team so really through innovation and how that model applies to healthcare and some really good insight on a macro level and some of them that serve any individual company or service.

Saul Marquez: [00:24:19] Awesome. That's really interesting. Listeners don't worry about writing any of this down this syllabus. Our show notes everything's available below and it's also available on That's Adam K for Kaufman. You'll be able to find all of these so just go over there and check it out. Before we conclude I just would love for you to share a closing thought with the listeners and also the best place that they could get ahold of you.

Adam Kaufman: [00:24:47] Sure would like to give the easiest way just by email or you go to our Web site and and those comes directly to me or someone on the team can go free. I see you that I look forward to hearing from you. I thought I'd share it and especially for leaders who have been outside of healthcare. I wasn't coming to healthcare. Remember to join and it is a journey for the individual an intimate and integral part of their life. And so it's not a single thing that a single article about how these character in this story. They're all held in Pakistan. And so we want a law that agrees with them and I want them all. And your own health care story with this product and the service is going to be and you can certainly Nothing's ever a straight line. But as far as regulation is going to change your market will change. So using that sort of North Star making people live better and then working towards is the best advice I can give an annual major and hopefully not too many gowns but they'll come I'm sure for people so you know like aviators change in general. It's not just the but it's how you help people recognize that you know there are going to be always what they want next to an individual level pride for some reason.

Saul Marquez: [00:26:15] Awesome. What great words of wisdom. Listeners enjoy these. Take them into consideration in your day to day and in your overall strategy because I think there are some really insightful tips. ADAM, again I just want to say thank you on behalf of me and all the listeners and looking forward to maybe having you on again.

Adam Kaufman: [00:26:33] Great, well really appreciate, Saul. Thank you, it was a fun conversation and I really appreciate the opportunity to speak with you and the listeners here. Whatever whatever wisdom they can take away from it.

: [00:26:47] Thanks for listening to the Outcomes Rockett podcast. Be sure to visit us on the web at for the show notes resources inspiration and so much more.

Recommended Book/s:

The Innovator's Prescription: A Disruptive Solution for Health Care

The Best Way To Contact Adam:

Mentioned Link/s: