Health 2.0: Eating Our Own Dogfood

13 Oct Health 2.0: Eating Our Own Dogfood

Dogfooding (dôg fūd·ĭng) n.


1.
Refers to using the software that one creates in the beta test stages and especially thereafter.
2. The expression comes from early TV commercials when the dog refused to eat the food
3. Conscientious effort to use the product you are promoting


The viral spread of the ideas and concepts of Health 2.0 continues insidiously on the conference circuit. This past week Indu Subaiya and Matthew Holt were up at the Ix Therapy Conference, Jane Sarasohn-Kahn was posting at iHealthBeat, and Brian Klepper and on Health Policy blogs. On Friday, Jane and Brian collaborated on an article attempting to describe a broader vision of the practical implications Health 2.0 implications.

In this posting, and others that followed, they are inviting wider participation on the actionable aspects of Health 2.0. But how can a wider audience truly participate in shaping and forming the emerging ideas and concepts? Its a rhetorical question, of course, as I suggested that in true Health 2.0 fashion the thought leaders in this space should eat their own dogfood.

Say what?

The phrase is a clever idiom that originated when Microsoft product managers began demanding that employees within the company should be using the software the company was producing. The phrase was a play on the Alpo commercials of the day, when the authoritative Lorne Greene informed the audience the dog food was so good he fed it to his own manly dogs. The imagery of that commercial and the implications of the phrase continue to have merit. It is the difference between “do what I say” versus “do what I do“. So, again, as thought leaders espousing these enabling tools it seems consistent that we should be using them to communicate our message and collaborate internally as well.

To that end, I have posted Jane and Brian’s “Broader Vision” commentary on the Health 2.0 wiki. It is located right next to the different definitions of Health 2.0, a catalog of representative companies, and projects like my own “What is Health 2.0” whitepaper (which currently contains the first three sections, and the outline for the remaining 7). Judging by the nearly 13,000 page views to date, it seems that the wiki is getting at least some traction. In the coming weeks and months we hope to merge the wiki with other initiatives underway to have a common place wherein the community can gather to discuss, debate, and disseminate the concepts of Health 2.0 to as wide as an audience as possible. We look forward to your participation and contributions.

In terms of a very brief commentary on Jane and Brian’s recent work, I think they have added to our understanding of the practical implications of Health 2.0. While the graphic is necessarily complex to describe the breadth of issues in the framework, it can be simply summarized under three common themes that I have previously identified as the driving force of the movement. I call it the “Triple A of Health 2.0”:

Presenting by Scott Shreeve, MD at the Health 2.0 Conference. Courtesy of HealthEquity and used with permission.


What we are seeing is the AGGREGATION of information/experience (this last one is not talked about much) that has always been disparate; software/technology/tools that allow the ANALYSIS of massive amounts of information (and subsequent development of recommendations), and then a medium to communicate this back to the consumer in some value-added ADVISORY capacity. You can envision all the different types of companies that impact the flow of information all along the value chain.

Look forward to everyone’s participation. Chow! Chow! Chow!

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