PKB and Leicester: Next Generation Medical Training

It’s well known that medical students train rigorously through case studies. The most rigorous training comes to them in their later years where they participate in hospital rounds or simulators that interactively drill them. However, this type of interactive and virtual education has now been piloted to medical students earlier in their training.  Leicester Medical School has teamed up with PKB (Patients Know Best) to build a unique training program that reflects the current trends and expectations of future generation of patients and physicians.

Speaking at the Royal Society of Medicine, both PKB CEO Dr. Mohammad Al-Ubaydli and Leicester innovation team leader Dr. Ron Hsu reflected upon the development of the tool, along with the lessons and observations learned along the way. For their full commentary, you can view the entire session here. Continue reading

End of Life Care: Thinking Ahead

End of life care is a difficult subject to approach but a necessary one. For an individual, it has the potential to save unnecessary suffering if delivered appropriately. For the healthcare industry, this can save costs. However, more importantly, it gives patients a chance to articulate their wishes with their family and friends. Continue reading

Informal Care: Support from your social network (Family, Friends, and the Community)

It is well known that an increasingly aging population is one of Europe’s social and economic challenges. For the health care industry this means that, according to the new report from Nesta Impact Investments, the current health care system will fail to meet the demands of the population, perhaps as soon as in ten years time. The need now is to build a system that will provide for the anticipated care and support needs, whilst delivering improved quality of life.

What Nesta found is that social entrepreneurs have already begun designing to improve informal care. Nesta analyzed twenty-five early stage ventures including Patients Know Best to understand how technology is providing the communication, support and efficiency of personalized informal care needed to lower health care costs and provide an improved quality of life. Continue reading

Genome Sequencing Files can be uploaded onto PKB

Patients Know Best (PKB) has a new feature coming out this month that will allow patients and clinicians to upload large data files such as genome sequencing files onto PKB. This feature will allow patients, clinicians, and clinical researchers to access the same data, real-time on a secure platform. It will increase the potential for patient-clinician-research interactions and direct more health care and clinical research towards patient-centered care.

We are working with partners like Rare Genomics Institute and Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America, along with academic institutes, to bring patients access to that research information faster. At the same time, real-time patient data coming onto the PKB platform, which is integrated with an increasing list of popular devices, provides clinicians and researchers with the input that they need for their studies.

Patients and clinicians, please keep an eye out for this new feature on PKB. You will find the capability to upload files under the Files tab.

PKB Co-ordinator can now see Patient Usage

Patients Know Best (PKB) co-ordinators have a crucial role in the adoption of PKB at their respective departments including registering clinicians, coaching clinicians and patients on using PKB and also administering the institution’s care plan templates, surveys and patient communication materials. This month, we’ve upgraded the co-ordinator account to show statistics that will make it easier to track adoption of PKB and provide proactive support for both patients and clinicians. Continue reading

Language Accessibility on PKB

For patients and their families to be actively involved in care, patients need to understand the diagnosis, the treatment options provided to them, lab test results and more. For patients who do not speak English or who learned English as a second language, this communication gap can be tough. Terms such as “incontinence”, “dosage” and “diagnosis” are not typically used in everyday conversation.

Patients Know Best is built on communication and we work towards decreasing any barrier between the patient and their healthcare team. This month, we bring the “language bar” option to every single page within PKB. This change will help many patients (and relatives of patients) to understand their discussions with clinicians, lab results and care plans. As a patient, you can switch the page to your language and (for example) quickly understand where to input your symptoms. Continue reading

Cyber Security: Interview with David Jones from WestGate Cyber Security

Data security breaches happen often, worrying many people. Few understand these threats better than David Jones, Director of WestGate Cyber Security, a UK information security company specializing in helping businesses and the public sector understand and overcome emerging cyber security threats.

We are lucky to have David educate us on the key cyber security threats – not just in health care. The UK government is certainly sitting up and taking notice by putting aside 650 million dollars towards helping businesses becoming more aware and prepared for these threats. However, it’s a hard job and a lot more needs to be done, particularly in areas of large infrastructures such as energy management, water and traffic. In his interview with our CEO Mohammad Al-Ubaydli here, David sets out with great transparency such problems, plus financial threats and a current case of stolen records from a private cosmetics company. Continue reading