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 (…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, offers some excellent introductory and advanced online courses on this excellent research, marketing and future disease surveillance tool.

Web 2.0 and Medical Education

In May of 2008, James McGee MD wrote an article for AAMC’s website, Web 2.0 and Medical Education: It’s Here. Are You Ready?.Web 2.0, in a nutshell, is the ability to interact with, change and shape information out on the world-wide web, while Web 1.0 traditionally sent information outward without the average user having the ability to influence the content or message. Here is a visual of the Web 2.0 vs Web 1.0 comparison provided in McGee’s AAMC article:

McGee wrote this piece four years ago, and since then Web 2.0 has matured considerably. In 2008, Facebook had 145 million users–in December 2011 they had 845 million users. The 2012 Summer Olympics were Tweeted about 150 million times and the 2012 Presidential election is being called ‘the Twitter election’ according to the Twitter blog with “more  Tweets sent every two days today than had ever been sent prior to Election Day 2008 — and Election Day 2008’s Tweet volume represents only about six minutes of Tweets today. Has this much changed in medical education since 2008?

McGee points out, the Millennials (aka Gen Yers and those born between early 80s and early 00s) are now in medical school. This group has grown up with technology and social media playing an increasingly larger role in their day-to-day experience. What we GenXers and Boomers wondered about in our formative years, Millenials simply “Google-it”, and have an answer within seconds. Or at least the start at an answer. Their ability to vet what is being shared in a lecture hall, find a second opinion or way of looking at an issue, or watch an engaging video, can happen in seconds, before the educator has even moved on to the next Power Point slide.

In an excellent post on her blog, Future Docs, Rising Above the Sea of MacBooks: “Edu-tainment” and Other Tips, Vineet Arora MD (@FutureDocs) knows she is competing with the world through the MacBooks sitting in front of her medical students, and she is facing that challenge by designing her lectures to meet the needs of the changing classroom environment. (Please forgive the lengthy quote–the information was too good not to share). She advises:

1.  Engage in “edu-tainment” – As Scott Litin at Mayo refers to it, “edu-tainment” is the goal – entertainment via education.  How does one incorporate entertainment into lecture style?  Well, the easiest way is through humor.  This is difficult since not everyone is funny by nature so it may be that you have to inject humor in odd ways.

2. Play games – Games are inherently fun and interactive can stimulate a lot of learning and discussion.  While you may be thinking about computer games, easy games can often stimulate learning.  One of our research ethics faculty played 20 questions with the group of students to teach about landmark research ethics cases.

3. Turn into a talk show – There is nothing more boring than watching the same person for an hour give a talk.  It is much more interesting to watch a panel of people tell a story about themselves – whether it be a patient, another physician, or another student.  I still remember medical school lectures with invited guests that had this talk show appeal due to the lack of power point and focus on the story.  While I’m not suggesting a Jerry Springer approach, who doesn’t love Oprah – at least Chicago has several role models to choose from.

4. Showcase video – Video is one of my favorite teaching tricks.  One well made video can communicate a thousand research articles.  In our week of Scholarship and Discovery, our faculty used videos from Xtranormal (no it was not the famous orthopedics vs anesthesia) but a similar one.  One faculty who could not attend taped a welcome introduction, and another used a clip from “Off the Map” which is now off the air but is still an effective reminder of how NOT to perceive global health.

5. Use audience response – Use of Turning Point clickers can result in instant feedback and engagement with students as they see the results of their poll immediately…Here Steve Jobs can help again – Turning Point has audience response systems for iPhones and iPads that can be used and automatically identify people but it would require that everyone have a smartphone and purchase a license to the software.

6. Refer to the internet– Given that students are on the computer, you can take advantage of it and ask them to visit internet resources in class by showing them urls or web pages that are of use.  Sometimes you may actually refer to your own course website like we do.

7. Provide fancy color handouts – …there is nothing like a fancy color brochure or handout to create a “buzz”.  It’s almost like a souvenir of their hard journey to class that day.  If you ever want to provide someone with a ‘leave behind’ that looks important, lamination is key.  A color laminated leave-behind is even better.  Pocket cards are some of my favorites.

Arora is aware of the need to meet her students where they are–my nephew’s 4th grade teacher unfortunately is not. Vince started school this week, and sadly had to leave his iPad at home. They don’t allow them in the school he attends. He informed his mom and dad he no longer likes school. This is the kid who, in 3rd grade, ran from the bus to the kitchen table at the end of the day to get his homework done without prompting. This is also the kid who sat all day in his room on Saturday making movies with an app he found on the internet, using iPad photos he took of the Lego superhero scenes he built, creating his own storyline without a lesson plan. I fear his teachers don’t allow iPads in class because they don’t want to be shown up by a nine-year-old. I also hope that his will not be the lost generation–the kids who sit in school waiting to get home so the real learning can begin. I hope Gen Yers will not be the lost generation of medical school–sitting in lectures that stop at the four walls of the classroom.

Please share examples of technology being used to its fullest in classrooms around the world–medical or otherwise. I know it’s out there in pockets, and can be,–but we need to expand its reach!