HEALTH2.0: User Generated Healthcare, Health2.0FAQ (by Matthew) with UPDATE

Q. What is Health2.0 and why are we running a conference about it?

The term Web2.0 has been around since 2003. The O’€™Reilly organization both coined the term and created a definition that year, and then they went on to create the Web2.0 Conference. Meanwhile over at The Health Care Blog and in his by now relatively long consulting career, Matthew Holt (your author–€I’€™ll be switching to "€œI & we" from now on) has been following technology in health care since the early 1990s. Some of my eHealth era reminisces were relatively poignant…

Towards the middle of 2006 several start-ups began targeting health
care using Web2.0 technologies such as wikis, mash-ups, video, blogs
communities, and user-generated data. And to be fair Wondir which has
since been sucked into the Revolution Health vortex started a now seemingly defunct blog called Health 2.0 in late 2005. In early November 2006 I did a podcast with 3 Health2.0 companies on THCB,
and the community was beginning to emerge. Two events crystallized this
for me—an article in Business2.0 (part of CNNMoney these days) which
was the first "€œmainstream"€ featuring of Health2.0 outside the blogs, and the December 2006 Healthcamp "€œunconference"€ run by James Littlejohn among others in which several of us got talking about the topic. (Here’€™s a photo
with Enoch Choi standing & talking and me apparently falling asleep
on my hand at the far end of the table! And here’€™s my Health2.0 partner
Indu Subaiya eating health food!).

Indu and I started kicking around the idea of a next steps on
Health2.0 in January and after a few changes in people, partnerships
and timing we created an advisory board, and talked about holding a
conference. After discussions with a couple of original charter
sponsors (thanks to Mike Haymaker at Cisco, and Daniel Palestrant at
Sermo for taking the plunge) we committed to holding a conference on
September 20, 2007 in San Francisco. (It’€™ll be in the Hilton San Francisco downtown, and there’€™s a special room-rate if you hurry!)

We’re also trying to help define Health2.0.

Q. You mean there’€™s not a definition of Health2.0 yet?

Actually there are several. Defining Health2.0 is also a
user-generated phenomenon. You can choose your own definition. Scott
Shreeve has one here. Jos Bakker from Philips disagrees and uses another more limited one–€”his is largely based on the O’€™Reilly definition of Web2.0. Ingenix CEO Andy Slavitt has a third.
David Kibbe from AAFP has recently been talking about it too (I€™ll find
his charts link soon), and Cleveland Clinic’€™s John Sharp gave a good talk on it a earlier this summer.

Our definition is currently focusing on user-generated aspects of
Web2.0 within health care but not directly interacting with the
mainstream health care system. That means, a) search, b) communities,
c) tools for individual and group consumer use. But clearly there are
blurring boundaries between all these, and the question of connecting
Health2.0 user-generated content to the wider health care system–€”which
hasn’€™t exactly adopted Web1.0 with a flourish yet–€”is still open.

Part of the conference deliverable will be a report that we’€™re
currently writing. There is huge room for debate about whether we’€™re
talking about limited use of tools and technologies or a wider movement
to change the whole healthcare system–€”or perhaps if it’€™s just all buzzwords with no substance.

Q. So what is the goal of the conference?

The goal of the conference is to get the leaders in Health2.0 to
meet each other, and to meet "mainstream"€ health care organization
players, technology people, finance people and anyone with an interest
in the topic. We’re going to hear from the big online consumer
aggregators (Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft, WebMD) about their views on the
use of Health2.0 in the future of online health. And we’€™re having
leading providers & health plans like Kaiser Permanente, Regence
BCBS and BCBS Minnesota tell us about their intentions to use these
tools. We’€™ll also have leading pharma companies, health care technology
companies, venture capitalists and prognosticators give us their views
on where this is all heading and who’€™s going to be providing what to
whom. Perhaps the key question is, Will Health2.0 grow into an
independent industry sector, be subsumed into the current healthcare
system, or create a new hybrid landscape?

Health2.0 User-Generated Healthcare
is also about showing the audience the very latest innovations from big
and small Health2.0 technology companies. It will include four panels
with rapid -fire demos highlighting the best technology from innovative

> fostering new online patient communities > designing health-focused search engines> connecting physicians to each other> providing health care tools for consumers (including administrative and clinical tools)

Here’€™s the agenda
for a packed day. Participants will receive the report as well as
attendance for the whole day. And other than Matthew no one gets to use

Q. Sounds fun, but what else is going on?

Besides the panels and the punditry, the conference will also feature an interactive voting and audience participation system
(from Visiontree), several media, blogging and webcasting participants,
and exhibits during networking breaks from leading companies.

We’€™ll be sitting in half rounds (no difficult to maneuver through "€œtheater seating"€ here) and we’€™ll have lots of moderated audience
participation in every session. Everyone gets to contribute–€”no real
barriers between the panelists, the audience, exhibitors or press here!
And it’€™s all in one big room–€”so you can dip in and out of exhibits and
breaks as you like. In addition at lunchtime we’€™re breaking for a one
hour "€œunconference"€ in which anyone can take over a table and run their
own discussion (Please let us know first, so we can tell everyone who’s
where!!) Finally, there’€™s the chance to stay and have a drink and meet
more people at the end of the day, and also at a night before event
(please email us separately for that one, as it has more limited space).

Before and after the conference there’€™ll be online exhibits of
demonstrations, podcasts and video casts of upcoming speakers, a social
networking site for people to meet each other on, and we’€™ll have
self-organizing dinner groups that night.

Q. How do I sign up?

Go to Health2.0 Registration.
The cost is $949 for the day, the report and all the online activities.
(It’€™s only $699 if you’€™re academic, charity, Foundation or
government (but no, working for a huge hospital organization that runs a
teaching hospital doesn’€™t count as "€œacademic"€).

Q. Can my company sponsor or exhibit?

Sure. We’€™ve had lots of interest in this, but we’€™ve moved to a
bigger room to satisfy the increased  demand over what we originally thought we’€™d
have. There are a variety of sponsorship opportunities and we also are
having a limited number of exhibitors–€”those tables will be in the main
conference room and manned during the breaks, but the exhibitors will
also be full attendees. Email us for details.

There’ll also be some press and bloggers, and some press video-crews there. If you want to meet them, let us know. In addition our friend Fard Johnmar is setting up a video cast series on Digital Health with the folks at Scribe Media and is looking for sponsors. Email us and we’€™ll pass you along to him.

Q. Where is it?

September 20, 2006 in San Francisco. It’€™ll be in the Hilton San Francisco downtown, in the Continental Ballroom (#4-6), and there’€™s a special room-rate if you hurry!

Q. I’€™m speaking, exhibiting, blogging; Is it OK for me to bring a colleague or two?

Sorry but this is a relatively small conference (our original aim
was around 150 attendees and it’€™ll be quite a bit larger) and we have over 40 speakers already. If you’€™re one of those you come for free.
Unfortunately if each speaker brought one friend, our economics would
go south in a hurry. Anyone else can of course sign up as a regular
attendee. Email us if you have questions or want to discuss.

Q. I/my friend/my CEO knows more about this than anyone on earth and just has to be on a panel

We have spent a lot of time and effort figuring out great panelists.
But there is no way we can accommodate everyone. Instead, please keep
emailing us about interesting people, ideas and companies and we’€™ll
consider them for podcasts, interviews, the report, and future
participation in conferences. But please keep it gentle, or at least
funny! And honestly, it’s very unlikely that we’ll have room for
another panelist.

Q. Really no more room?

Well not quite. We are having one slot on the "Social Media" panel
that we’ll be having a "people’s choice award" to choose. Details
coming up on The Health Care Blog. If you have a fantastic site that we haven’t heard in that list, let us know and we may add it
. We’ve picked a winner for that last slot. Details on THCB very soon.

We are also NOT going down the path of "€œpay us and you get a speaking
slot/track"€. It may be hubris but we think that we know a fair bit
about the space and hope that our choices provide some "€œvalue-add"€.

Q. C’€™mon, you’€™re not that purer than pure!

No of course not. We’€™re both consultants; Indu works mainly with
Physic, a new VC fund, and Matthew works with many health care tech
companies–€”including a couple that are new and presenting at the
conference (Careseek & Enhanced Medical Decisions). And yes, if
they do well he hopes to do well too! But he chose them to work with and to be on the panel because he thinks they’€™re very, very interesting.

Q. I’€™d love to come but I’€™m working for an unfunded start-up and
have already maxxed out my credit cards; I’€™m a student; my dog ate my
checkbook; can you help?

We’€™re nice people and we remember being all of the above. We have a
limited number of spaces for these types of category on a case-by-case
basis. We’€™ve set up some different rates (including a volunteer
category).  Email us but please realize that we can’€™t get everyone who wants to come into the room.
Sorry, we’ve maxxed out on our scholarship/discount requests. You’ll be hearing from us if you’ve made the cut.

Q. Are you the only people doing this? 

Running this conference exactly? Yes. Talking or presenting about Health2.0, err–no.

Here’s a blog from a Hungarian medical student on Medicine2.0. Here’s Uri Ginzberg’s Medical 2.0 blog, and here’s the Health2.0 wiki run by Johannes Ernst, who’s on our advisory board.

The recent HealthCare Unbound conference (at which I was a panelist on PHRs) featured a session on Health2.0.  The upcoming Information Therapy
conference in Park City, Utah (October 8-€“10, 2007) will feature another
session on Health2.0 which Indu and Matthew are helping to run–€”and lots
of great information on the related concept of Information Therapy.  We
expect there’€™ll be lots more, including a second generation of the
Health2.0 Conference that we’€™ll be putting on early in 2008 (details to

Q: I have come up with the most brilliant ever conceived of idea for a new Health 2.0
startup. If funded my idea will revolutionize healthcare/eradicate the national
deficit/cure [disease name here.] Do you know somebody who can help find me

Yes, we know some VCs. Let us know about said idea and we’ll see if we can help.

Q. Why has it taken you so long to get this FAQ up here? 

This summer I have had a huge consulting project, decided to run
this conference and am also getting married (perhaps an even bigger
production)!  Don’t worry–for the conference I have lots of help, but I
promised my colleagues the FAQ some time ago, and just spent a Sunday
morning writing it!

Q. Will you update this FAQ often?

I hope so! Well occasionally at least!

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7 replies »

  1. sometimes it just doesn’t work to get there despite best efforts…in addition to the up-to-date blogs will there be podcasts/recordings of the whole day available for those of us highly interested but unable to attend?

  2. Health 2.0 can be about a lot of things, but at its core it is about inverting the provider-centric nature of healthcare. In the new world, consumers and doctors- not insurance companies- will dictate care. Services will begin to route around the providers and be aligned directly in the interests of people themselves. The internet has a role to play here to build community, share information. Doctors themselves I think are the most important piece of this new world, in the context of them being able to determine care. Flagship Global Health just closed a $15m funding round, the release is linked.

  3. Good stuff Matt, answered many questions. I noticed the Sept. 2006 typo too.
    I think a live video stream and post-conf downloadable video would be an EXCELLENT idea as well, just like is done in many tech conferences.

  4. Hi!
    You wrote that the conference will be in September 2006, should be 2007 I guess…
    Is it possible to follow the conference somehow online? It’s quite a long way from Europe to go there just for a day! 😉

  5. Adam,
    We have a limited number of reduced rate passes and scholarships available. Go look on the Health 2.0 website under registration for more info on this. Forwarding us a resume is probably a good idea as well, as we’re hearing from a lot of people and space is quite limited. You can send your qualifications and a cover letter if you feel it helps make your case, to info@health2con.com.

  6. I was reading that you have a waiver for students. I would love to attend as i am currently doing my Masters in Health Policy and Leadership but its a bit out of my budget :). Do i have to submit a resume or something similar?