The Basics of Participatory Medicine–Starting First With EMRs: A Chat With Ted Eytan, MD MS MPH

The Basics of Participatory Medicine–Starting First With EMRs: A Chat With Ted Eytan, MD MS MPH « Significant Science.

I’m doing a “blogterview” with Hope Lehman. Hope wanted to do a traditional interview initially; instead, we’re doing it dynamically in the comments. Thanks, Hope, for trying something new. Feel free to add some comments of your own.


Hi Robert,

I think the potential exists if they're implemented well, what do you think based on everything you've read, seen,heard?

Hi, Ted. You have been sweet. It has been fun to figure how to work in the comments section of a blog as the main source of information dissemination versus relying on post themselves.

As to Robert's question, wasn't one of the main things Kaiser found was that a huge part of the costs was not for the technology but the training of those who would use it?

I would think that cost savings would not appear for seven or eight years–just my wild guess. And there would also certainly be resistance from unions like the SEIU because there would almost certainly be layoffs for some.


You're correct – I punted the question as you noticed, for a few reasons. I thought you probably had a good handle on the answers from your own experience. The other thing is that I really don't see myself as an "EHR champion" or even a "technology champion." Wierd, huh? When I was at Health 2.0 a few years back and asked to introduced myself in 3 words, they were "change the profession."

I am delighted by the possibility that EHRs can help our profession really be there for patients and their families, and so many things I have seen in health care that made me not so proud of what we do could be aided by more information being available at the point of care and beyond. Also, our profession needs to cultivate diversity more. Those are strong drivers.

Training is extremely important in the implementation of electronic health records, and technology in general. It can't be underestimated. On the topic of SEIU I would like to point out Kaiser Permanente's industry leading Labor Management Partnership. Here you have an environment where everyone is involved in leveraging technology to do great things for you and society. Check it out,


Ted Eytan, MD