Tim_HeadshotFor members of a panel during the Disruptive Women session on Tuesday at the mHealth Summit at the National Harbor, innovative ideas had strikingly different origins.

For one panelist, Ramin Bastani of Healthvana, it was a slap from a woman, in response to a question about her sexual health status, which spurred him to change the way patients receive – and exchange – information regarding STDs and HIV. For Jen Hyatt of Big White Wall, it was a note from her mom after jamming to 70s music with friends that helped inspire 20-plus years’ worth of startups and social purpose organizations, the latest which allows mental health patients to access an online ecosystem of behavioral health resources.093_Gaylord

The program, called “Technology Gets Intimate,” was moderated by Nancy Green of Verizon Healthcare and afforded each panelist an opportunity to talk about their disruptive solutions – and the catalysts to achieving them – that put the patient at the center of their health care decisions through digital and mobile.

“I believe the future of mhealth, digital health, is entirely collaborative,” said Hyatt. “I do not think there is one company, one organization that has the whole answer. The depth of the need for alternative, person-centered driven health care in the US, in the UK, across the globe, is really profound, and that I think means, fundamentally, we need to collaborate and work together.”

During the discussion, Tanya Jones, President of Aya Global, noted witnessing some of the dire conditions in rural parts of Africa during a trip with her parents that served as a tipping point to address disparities and skill building in those isolated areas with limited access to reliable infrastructure. Mobile phone technology, she said, has improved the skills of community health workers and allows for training and decision-making tools that enable them to work in the best interest of people in desperate need of care.

074_GaylordAnother panelist, Andre Blackman of Pulse and Signal, a digital branding and consulting firm, had an eye-opening moment when funding was cut to a successful public health campaign to get children more active. He used this experience, in part, as a catalyst to focus on familiarity and sustainability in the mobile health landscape.

Alicia Wilson, the Executive Director of La Clínica del Pueblo, a federally qualified health center serving the Latino and immigrant populations of the Washington, DC area, spoke about the role that social media, particularly Facebook, has in educating and connecting people with the services and care they need.  For her, Facebook unites “nomadic” communities and is a means to reach more people, spread prevention messages and lower risk factors.

“The real next step is to truly recognize the patient as the center, as opposed to the health care provider as the center,” Wilson said, “because then patients tell you what they need.”

The event concluded with a presentation recognizing and honoring the 2014 and 2015 Disruptive Women to Watch. It was followed by a reception in the Pose Ultra Lounge.

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Stay tuned for photos and video from the event.

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