Health 2.0 WinterTech: The Informed Health Consumer’s Knowledge is Power

At the upcoming Health 2.0 WinterTech conference, January 15th in the heart of San Francisco, I will be moderating a discussion on what it means to be an informed health consumer in this digital day and age. Working from the foundation, “Knowledge is Power” the WinterTech “Informed Health Consumer” panel builds on how the Health 2.0 community actively contributes to the creation of a more educated health audience than has ever existed before.

This topic surrounding health information consumption is fascinating because it implies a very different kind of seller-buyer transaction than most commercial enterprises. Typical to most exchange, a seller offers a good or service “X” – maybe it is a car or a clothing item or a piece of software – and a buyer chooses whether or not to purchase that good or service based on price, perceived need, scarcity, and a host of emotional factors. Although information is never perfect, it has historically rarely been positioned as the chief good or service provided in the exchange. That is, until now.

In part thanks to advances in technology and shifts in cultural expectations, health care transparency, prices for surgery, and quality of care to patient satisfaction has become a good-service hybrid. As increasing numbers of consumers utilize these transparency tools, we can all expect to see a health care ripple effect that will cause seismic change to the current landscape. As a MD leading my own functional medicine practice, I look forward to seeing first hand the difference the informed health consumer movement can make in helping my patients make decisions in regards to treatment, lifestyle, and even in choosing me as their physician.

At WinterTech join our discussion alongside benchmark organizations like Consumer Reports and startups like Iodine and Better Doctor to continue driving transparency towards a path that is good for consumers and positively disruptive to health care sellers. Look forward to seeing you at Health 2.0 WinterTech!

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