I came across this interesting article from BusinessweekOnline titled “Blogs will change your business“. The article was a description of the blog phenomenon and how it may impact businesses. While the examples were interesting to illustrate how the power of information is changing the dynamic between companies and customers, I got to thinking about the potential applicability to health care.
The actual elements of a blog are that information is added fairly regularly on a particular topic (or it could be general, depending on the nature of the blog). But, given that I’m in researching ehealth, what if we converted (or viewed) medical records into blogs. In its current state, medical records are periodic entries about a particular topic (i.e., the patient) with a collection of different “links” (e.g., lab results, assessments, etc) with a commentary provided by the physician and nurse. What if we used electronic tools, such that the patient records information about their health status and condition, with health care providers and health care organizations providing additional links to the blog? Instead of having specialized silos of information for the physician, the nurse, the social worker, etc, we could have section that can provide a running diary and log of symptoms, treatments, and the like.
In all fairness, one challenge would be to provide a “summary” of the current status or major conditions for those providing emergency treatments, but there may be an application of blog-technology here. Why not harness the power of blogs to improve our health care system? Who knows, blogger may be the next big health care information technology company.