Doctors 2.0 and You: Michael Seres on the Empowered Patient

August 21, 2013
172 Views

 

Why watch this video of Michael Seres?

Here’s my answer:

 

Why watch this video of Michael Seres?

Here’s my answer:

Have you ever had to say goodbye to your loved ones, not knowing if you would ever see them again after the operation? How do you make the decision to undertake such an operation, without first speaking to someone who has? How do you face the incredibly arduous challenges of life after the transplant? How do you learn about the most relevant experiences and options? How do you meet the people who will form with you the links of a new life chain? Not everyone in life-threatening situations has the privilege of accessing new technologies, but the world is changing. It has changed, and we now know that the least expensive part of medicine — human-to-human communication, between patients, between healthcare professionals, between professionals and patients makes a world of difference. (And this is only one facet of New Technologies, the other being bringing data to the right place..But let’s stick to interpersonal communication for this short post.)

Michael Seres, one of the early bowel transplant patients, was able to find a transplant surgeon in his backyard, thanks to Social Media. Social Media also helped him reach out to patients with relevant experiences, and he has since helped others in the same way. And the fact that patients are the ultimate decision makers is essential. How else can they live in peace, with the incredibly complex daily post-operative “challenges”? Michael and all the patients move mountains with their courage and determination, aided and abetted by new technologies and especially Social Media.

Michael was introduced to his surgeon at Oxford by a physician in NY, without ever leaving his own home, thanks to the Internet. On the other hand, Michael and I first met at Medicine X, 13 flight hours from our respective homes in England and France. Travel doesn’t stop Michael. Not much does, if it’s about helping patients. Yes, Michael is exceptional and not everyone can do the same today..But, isn’t medicine about saving lives, one at a time?