On this episode of the Healthy Wealthy and Smart Podcast, Mark Merolli joins me to chat about eHeath and physical therapy. Dr. Mark Merolli is a physiotherapist, health informatician and digital health consultant. He works in the digital health research and academia space and practices physio in a sports and musculoskeletal practice.
In this episode, we discuss:
-The many forms of digital health
-The latest trends in eHealth for business marketing and knowledge management
-Opportunities for physical therapists to leverage health data for improved treatment outcomes and insurance reimbursements
-Mark’s case for why healthcare professionals should collaborate with tech companies to create digital healthcare products
-And so much more!
Physical therapists can benefit from leveraging social media for both patient management and education. Mark stresses, “Social media is one trend that we can’t ignore.”
With innovations such as wearable technology wide scale, fairly accurate accumulation of health data is now possible which can be used to better understand treatment outcomes and change the way insurance companies think about reimbursement. In this age Mark understands that, “Information is power.”
Many applications are being developed for health and wellness needs and Mark has found that, “There’s a lot happening in the digital health space.” However, many apps underperform due to lack of insights from healthcare practitioners who more readily understand the patient experience. Unfortunately, Mark has found that, “Healthcare is inherently slow to adopt a lot of these trends.” Mark believes healthcare providers should partner with digital innovators and have a role in developing these technologies because, “It’s the practicing health professional’s role to have an intimate knowledge of healthcare.”
For more information on Mark:
My clinical background as a Physiotherapist has been rewarding and grounding. After years focussing on clinical practice exclusively, I was drawn in by the paradigm shift I was witnessing both with my own patients and in the wider community – a push enabled by technology. I was an early adopter. During a stint living and practicing abroad in the United Kingdom, I was fortunate enough to gain some experience working at a digital media agency alongside my clinical work, specialising in online, print media and advertising. This parallel experience to health practice was invaluable and provided a foothold to explore “digital” in “health”. Working as part of the online team helped me gain extensive knowledge in the web, social media, website management, search engine optimization (SEO), digital analytics and, digital strategy. By doing this, I was better able to conceptualise the digital landscape and relate it back to my passion – healthcare.
All of my experiences have led me to focus my career very much in the digital health space. I have a PhD in this area, specialising in social media for health but my interests and expertise covers a range of technologies and areas (especially consumer-centric technologies that influence participation in health – mHealth, apps, sensors, telehealth, virtual reality, games, etc).
Now, I research, lecture, educate, strategise, speak and provide thought leadership on all things digital health to various health organisations, entities and individuals. I love all of my roles!
I also have formal qualifications in health informatics, such as Membership in the Australasian College of Health Informatics (MACHI), am a Certified Health Informatician Australasia (CHIA), endorsed by Australian College of Health Informatics (ACHI) and Health Informatics Society of Australia (HISA), and am the Chairman of the International Medical Informatics Association – Participatory Health and Social Media Working Group (IMIA – PHSM).
My real passion is to connect with likeminded health professionals and other stakeholders who are interested in this big wide world we now call “digital health”. As technologies continue to intertwine with healthcare, it’s important we’re equipped with the knowledge and understanding to operate confidently in this environment. My overall vision is to connect with, educate and up-skill health professionals across a variety of digital health areas and to help solve practical solutions in future models of healthcare.
My Mission: “To connect professionals with digital health”
My Credo: “For health professionals..by health professionals”
Resources discussed on this show:
Social Media for Physios: Mark’s Training and Business Course
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Have a great week and stay Healthy Wealthy and Smart!