Telluride Alumni Building Their Own Patient Safety Baseball Diamonds

Screen Shot 2015-03-23 at 9.44.12 PMIts that wonderful time of year for baseball fans when spring training is winding down and opening day of baseball is just two weeks away. If you are a baseball junkie like I am, Field of Dreams has to be an all-time favorite baseball movie. It is my favorite, and when our Telluride alumni reach out with a new patient safety program they have initiated, I can’t help but think of the classic line, “If you build it, he will come,” that encouraged lead character Ray Kinsella to plow his corn field and turn it into a baseball diamond. Our Telluride mission, generously funded through the years by The Doctors Company Foundation, COPIC, CIR and MedStar Health, has been a similar leap of faith…”If you teach them, they will lead”.

The following post is by Telluride Alumni and Guest Authors: Byron Crowe, M3, Michael Coplin, M4/MBA Candidate, and Erin Bredenberg, M4 at the Emory University School of Medicine. Their work is another wonderful example that our Telluride mission is catching fire, and that the next generation of physician leaders are making a difference by building their own patient safety baseball diamonds.

Student-driven quality improvement initiatives are growing at Emory University, and the three of us – Erin Bredenberg, Michael Coplin, and Byron Crowe, all medical students at various stages of training – are using our experiences at Telluride to guide us as we create new learning opportunities for fellow students and improve care through QI projects.

We come from diverse backgrounds; prior to medical school, Erin was a Peace Corps volunteer, Michael spent time in investment banking, and Byron worked in hospital administration. Our personal experiences with the shortcomings of our healthcare system drove a shared interest in QI and patient safety, and we each eventually found our way to Telluride at some point during the last three years.

Telluride has shaped our trajectories at Emory in unique ways.

  • For Erin, now in her final year of medical school, the impact of the connections she made with other like-minded students inspired her to use the skills learned at Telluride while completing an MPH to educate others. She joined her local IHI Open School chapter as Director of Education where she organizes workshops and events to teach students key concepts in QI and patient safety, skills she honed working at the Atlanta VA hospital on a major falls prevention project.
  • Michael has become a key advocate for QI education within the medical school and has been integral in pulling together faculty and students to explore developing a longitudinal QI curriculum. He is currently earning an MBA at Emory and is channeling his interest in health systems efficiency into his work on a QI project in the emergency department.
  • Byron, now entering his third year, continues to lead the IHI Open School chapter at Emory and organize students around local QI projects. In the community, he is coordinating an ongoing partnership between a local safety net clinic and the Open School to improve care for diabetic patients.

We all agree that one of the most important aspects of our time at Telluride was the empowerment we felt from meeting other students who wanted to use their careers to make care safer and more effective through QI. Moreover, our experience at Telluride did not end once we returned to Emory–in addition to working together at school, we have remained connected to the amazing students we met at Telluride from other institutions.

Attending the Telluride conference taught each of us new things, whether about the healthcare system, our patients, communication, and ourselves. But it also enabled us to join a growing community of faculty and students who have attended Telluride and who share a commitment to improvement. Having a small piece of that community at Emory has been a formative and unforgettable part of our medical school experience.


Through Another’s Eyes

Courtesy of our friend, Paul Levy at Not Running A Hospital, who shared a post from ePatient Dave’s healthcare blog, made by Cleveland Clinic and inspired by the words of Henry David Thoreau. What would healthcare, and the world, be like if everyone remembered to see through someone else’s eyes?

Please share!


Following #meded Twitter Stream to Medicine 2.0

While perusing the #meded Twitter feed last week, I was once again reminded how the young are educating all of us. Not only with the resolve they are leaving the shame and blame culture of medicine behind, but in their mastery of technology and social media–both avenues to the future of medicine. I followed a link found on the #meded stream to David Harlow’s post, Medicine 2.o Takes Harvard Medical School By Storm, which in turn took me right to the Medicine 2.0 Conference page and the wonderful list of speakers who were hard at work in Boston September 15-16 discussing new ways to disrupt medicine using social media, social networks, Web 2.0, mHealth and more.

Medicine 2.0 is a World Congress that began five years ago in Toronto bringing together those with the vision of where social medial, mobile health and Web 2.0 could take medicine to discuss and design peer-reviewed research in areas of need. The following video provides a brief introduction, and Gunther Eysenbach MD/MPH/FACMI from the Medicine 2.0 Advisory Committee and the Centre for Global eHealth Innovation, University Health Network, Canada gives an overview in his welcome to attendees (excerpt follows):

…the Medicine 2.0 congress…(and network) has grown tremendously…with now almost 500 attendees in Boston and over 3,000 members in the social network (medicine20.net)…This growth is of course testimony to the enormous and increasing importance of participatory, open, and collaborative approaches supported by emerging technologies in medicine – which is exactly the topic of Medicine 2.o…we not only talk about Web 2.0, but we actually apply its principles throughout the development of the conference…Our conference website doubles as a social networking site…and our peer-review processes are really peer-to-peer (and highly automated) rather than committee driven…

The lineup included:

  • A keynote from Jamie Heywood, CEO of PatientsLikeMe, an organization trying to move medical research into the next century by putting the patient at the center through data collection, collaboration and participation.
  • A keynote from John Brownstein, Harvard Medical School, who discussed capabilities and future directions of public health surveillance and detection of emerging infectious disease.
  • A keynote by Dave DeBronkhart (aka e-Patient Dave), who reviewed the status of personal health data and his own model of how information comes into existence and how people are pulled toward that information.

Additional sessions covered:

  1. Mobile and Tablet Health Apps: Looking at Evolving Use of Apps and Mobile Health Devices in Real-Time Clinical Setting; Mobile Devices, Communication and Care Coordination for Older Patients with Chronic Pain; Mobile Intervention for Depression
  2. Business Models for Web 2.0
  3. Web 2.0 Approaches for Clinical Practice, Research and Quality Monitoring: SMART Platforms: Creating the “App Store” for Health
  4. eCoaching: Evidence-Based Empathy Training Improves Patient Satisfaction
  5. Web 2.0 approach to behavior change, public health and biosurveillance: Smoking cessation via Social Media; Internet-Based Intervention for Kids of Divorce; Automated Tool for Addressing Lifestyle Changes During a Medical Encounter; Exploratory Study on Celebrity Health & Fitness Usage on Consumer Attitudes & Behavior
  6. Usability and human factors on the web: The Embedded Designer: The Next Big Step for Healthcare Systems
  7. And more…See their program for more details here

Needless to say, it was long overdue that I added the #meded stream to my Hootsuite dashboard. I look forward to being even further educated by the young! And if all these Twitter references sound foreign to you, Mediabistro.com offers some excellent introductory and advanced online courses on this excellent research, marketing and future disease surveillance tool.