Key takeaways from Rock Health’s annual digital health summit

On October 17, 2017, Rock Health kicked off its sixth annual digital health conference in San Francisco. The two-day seminar focused on using interactive programming to tackle healthcare’s most challenging issues. Here are some key takeaways from the summit.


Takeaway #1: Address the problem first, then consider technological solutions

“You have to start by listening,” said Sean Duffy, CEO of Omada Health.

As a self-identified “gadget geek,” Duffy admitted to being the proud owner of an automatic floss dispenser. In a light-hearted jab, another panelist used this as an example of the “shiny object problem”—a gizmo that doesn’t offer any real value.

“[W]e always start our meeting every year with, ‘what are the key problems that we have to solve’ and then go and look for those solutions instead of responding to knocks on our door,” said Veenu Aulakh, Executive Director of Center for Care Innovations.


Takeaway #2: AI is overrated

 Aulakh also likened AI to being a shiny object, and he’s not alone in this opinion. Dr. Jessica Mega, Chief Medical officer of Verily, believes that AI is completely overhyped.

 “One of my very favorite colleagues at work, his pet peeve is when people say, ‘We are going to take it and machine learn on it. We are going to AI it up,’” Mega said to a laughing audience.

 But truth be told, this type of technology is still a long way from being able to provide any real benefit.


Takeaway #3: Quality Management System

“As a tech startup founder, one of the first things I would do is figure out what a QMS is, a Quality Management System, and do it,” said Christine Lemke, president of Evidation Health. “Institute a Quality Management System immediately—[it should be] the first thing you should do.”


Read more about Rock Health’s 2017 digital health summit here.

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