"Most inspiring for me was seeing participants become inspired and enthusiastic about tools and topics I presented. I was able to see a twinkle in the eyes of clinicians who felt reinvigorated and energized about their passion: providing quality primary care to patients while enjoying themselves."
I've often said that the best way to ensure the failure of pretty much anything meant to help patients is to have extremely smart, well intentioned professionals – administrators, consultants, educators, entrepreneurs, marketers, payers, providers and/or researchers – build it without talking, and listening, to patients at every step along the way.
I am a hands-on visual learner so, as a doctor, I like to draw information for my patients and occasionally join them in making healthy lifestyle changes. Already this year, I have done the 30-day ab challenge, 21 days to a new healthy habit, and started running again to support two patients doing a “Couch-to-5K Program”. So, it was an easy decision to join a fellow doctor in trying a vegan diet for 30 days.
"Doc, I found this on the web. What do you think?" - This ever increasing statement from our patients and their family members is often followed by a discussion during which a substantial amount of time can be spent fact-checking and encouraging good web-browsing habits for healthcare information discovery.
So is there value in this for our patients? For me as a self-motivated exerciser, a heart rate monitor is probably a better investment. But this is not a device for the “exerciser”. This is a motivational and educational device for patients that have never learned how to exercise. For the truly sedentary patient, an activity tracker can be both a motivator and educator.