It’s another edition of Digital Exhaust, my weekly digest of interesting stuff from the web and beyond. Thanks for subscribing. And if you’re not one of us, subscribe below. Poke around and enjoy the list….
Thought for the week | Technology comes with a cost
All technology comes with a cost. This is a universal truth, especially in healthcare. In medicine, for example, our move to deeper, faster, and more precise medicine comes with a cost to our attention to the whole person.
We want medical precision. But we need attention to our broader human needs. How we reconcile this emerging tension will represent one of the greatest challenges to 21st century healthcare.
Where is healthcare’s consumer marketplace?
Andreessen asks: Why are there so few scaled consumer marketplace businesses in healthcare? Great summary of a trillion dollar opportunity (whoa).
I liked their healthcare industry’s laws of physics, a collection of challenges to the business-to-consumer space:
The three-sided nature of healthcare (patient, provider, payor), and the related difficulty of integrating comprehensively with insurance across multiple carriers and provider networks
The lack of price and scheduling transparency, and the unwillingness of a broad enough set of providers to publish prices and real-time appointment availability for all of their services
The infrequent use of healthcare for the majority of consumers, making it harder to have LTV to justify the CAC
Challenges around qualification of customers, given the inherent information asymmetry between consumers and providers in terms of exactly what diagnosis a consumer might have, and therefore, what specific service they might need
Relatedly, the importance of referral behavior between providers, which can even be a requirement for insurance reimbursement; this can make the provider discovery problem less relevant in some specialties
The legal history of the poo emoji
Strangely compelling. How the law sees and handles the poo emoji. It seems lawyers are taking poo emoji seminars to get up to speed. No joke.
Emoji can often have ambiguous meanings, ranging from literal to metaphorical to sarcastic. The poop emoji is a little more on the straightforward side, but there are nevertheless many different ways to interpret it, depending on the context. In its Delaware lawsuit, Twitter pointed to Musk’s poop emoji as an instance in which he had violated the purchase agreement’s non-disparagement clause.
+ Very loosely related: From the MIT Technology Review, why AI is well suited to do what lawyers do.
Why you should always start by not trusting digital health applications
I know that’s bold. But more and more, I believe it.
Monument, an online alcohol counseling startup, has been sharing patient data for years. In a breach notification, the company confirmed that it has been sharing data with Google and Facebook.
I don’t have enough space in the letter to detail the others that have done the same. Welcome to the extraction economy.
New decisions based on new information
Great Seth Godin post on changing our opinions based on new information. That’s not weakness. That’s not flip-flopping or even embarrassing. That’s practical, resilient and generous.
The best earplugs, ever.
Nice Wired review of the best earplugs money can buy.
When humans were free
I stumbled on this on IG. Kinda true. Or, hold the phone, are we more in control of our freedom than we think? Who’s in charge of our attention?
Of incubators, orchids and artificial wombs
A short piece from The Wellcome Collection on this prerelease book covering the future of birth. It traces how care of preterm babies has developed over the last 200 years: from the heated glass boxes pioneered by Victorian scientists to today’s ‘bio-bags’, which could soon provide extremely preterm babies with a liquid, womb-like environment. On pre-order for me….and I love the cover.
Two of the biggest challenges facing the largest pediatric health system in the U.S/The world (Texas Children’s) are 1) the nursing shortage, and 2) behavioral health. We’re seeing a rising demand for sitters — nurse extenders to watch at-risk behavioral patients under observation. This idea of virtual sitters seems totally viable, and an easy entree in to virtual nursing. I’m gonna chase this one….watch me.
AI assisted diagnosis of acute respiratory distress syndrome
A limited body of literature exists around how automated AI systems can collaborate with physicians for diagnostic decision-making. This Nature NPJ paper on ARDS gets close and illustrates how (at least for the moment) AI will collaborate with humans, or humans will collaborate with AI. Having the AI model interpret a chest X-ray for ARDS first reduced the number of chest X-rays requiring manual physician review by 79.2%.
A great example of how AI won’t blindly ‘replace’ physicians, but rather redefine their workflows (aka, their job). A huge preoccupation for docs, BTW.
This graphic summarizes the workflow used in the study.
A walking room
Here the Dutch exchange the walking desk for a huge-ass ‘walking room,’ as reported in Fast Company. I’ve decided I want to turn my clinic into a massive walking clinic…
In God we Trust - With Dogs we Bust
Like it or not, it’s how our K9 team rolls….in The Woodlands, Texas.
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Thank you for sharing these interesting stories. As far as AI/ML devices are concerned, the current regulatory approach seems to position them as an aid in diagnosis, not a diagnostic by itself. One area I am particularly excited about is the use of AI in early diagnosis of ASD. FDA has cleared over 500 medical devices which use AI in the recent years.