Jason Hwang | Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer of Icebreaker Health

Jason Hwang

Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer of Icebreaker Health

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Iselin, CA

Jason Hwang

Jason Hwang, M.D., M.B.A. is an internal medicine physician with deep expertise in health care innovation, both as a thought leader and as an entrepreneur. Together with Professor Clayton Christensen of Harvard Business School and Dr. Jerome Grossman of Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Dr. Hwang co-authored The Innovator's Prescription: A Disruptive Solution for Health Care (McGraw-Hill, January 2009), the American College of Healthcare Executives 2010 Book of the Year and recipient of the 2011 Health Service Journal Circle Prize for Inspiring Innovation.

Dr. Hwang was previously co-founder and chief medical officer of Icebreaker Health (also known as Lemonaid Health), a next-generation telemedicine company based in San Francisco. Prior to that, Dr. Hwang co-founded and was Executive Director of Healthcare at Innosight Institute (now renamed the Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation), a non-profit social innovation think tank. He also taught as chief resident and clinical instructor at the University of California, Irvine, where he received multiple recognitions for his clinical work. He has also served as a clinician with the Southern California Kaiser Permanente Medical Group and the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Long Beach, California. Dr. Hwang received his B.S. and M.D. from the University of Michigan and his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Jason Hwang
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Jason Hwang
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Disrupting Health Care
From Predictions to Practice

When we think of “quality” health care, we generally assume that more expertise is always preferred -- doctors must be better than nurses, specialists must be better than primary care doctors, and hospitals and clinics must be better than virtual interactions. This mentality, in part, has left us with a health care system that is unaffordable, inconvenient and largely broken. But if we were to apply the principles of disruptive innovation to our collapsing health care system—by using advances in technology to help nurses and primary care physicians to do more sophisticated work—a costly, hard-to-schedule trip to the doctor may become increasingly rare. Disruptive innovations like direct-to-consumer diagnostics, patient-controlled electronic health records, telemedicine, and hospital-at-home models of care have the potential to create transformative change in the health care industry, argues physician Jason Hwang. Such models of care also have the potential to be superior options with distinct advantages for paving the way toward more accessible, affordable and quality health care.

Full Potential
Why and How Retail Clinics Must Disrupt… Again

Anointed as the disruptive model for care delivery when they first entered the marketplace, retail clinics have fallen significantly short of both their promise and potential. In fact, says Jason Hwang, they surprisingly did not follow the path of true disruption. Most disruptions start by serving the low end of consumers, but retail clinics tend to attract people who already have insurance and access to care. The retail clinic model has become one of convenience rather than one of need, missing an important opportunity to serve the poor and underinsured. To thrive and move beyond their current plateau, retail clinics must figure out how to self-disrupt, says Hwang – and he believes a combination of technology and nurses may be a big part of the solution. He discusses his views on how retails clinics can capitalize on mobile health technology and rely more on the expertise of nurses to further push the boundaries of where and to whom retail clinics deliver care, expanding their menu of services while providing quality care to those who need it most.

Realizing the Potential
The Next Generation of Telemedicine

Most health care takes place inside brick-and-mortar walls. Physician-patient visits are largely unstructured, 15-minute "conversations" with little engagement - highly variable experiences with highly variable outcomes that are also neither scalable nor efficient in an era of rising costs and workforce shortages. The advent of telemedicine brought high expectations of disruption, but physicians continue to adhere to the same care delivery model - just on a video screen. A new model of telemedicine offers the best potential to introduce enormous efficiency, standardizing workflows and care processes, and provide care that is not just affordable and convenient, but also high in quality and scalable.

Dr. Jason Hwang is a pioneer of this next generation of telemedicine. He delves deep into the automated, software-based framework, and discusses proven outcomes, drawn from his own experiences. He also shares his vision for the future of telemedicine in which new models of care will arise in often unexpected ways, as new caregivers and care sites enabled by the digital tools that are being developed today.

How Technology is Changing Health Care - for Good

Traditional health care is simply not set up to evolve alongside rapidly advancing technologies. Consider the influx of health data from wearable fitness devices and home diagnostic equipment. Doctors either don't know what do with the data, or they can't keep up with the data deluge. What's needed is a software solution that can absorb and process the data, supported by doctors who can then make both the sophisticated and regulatory-required decisions, says Dr. Jason Hwang.

It already exists in what Dr. Hwang describes as an asynchronous, cloud-based platform. By moving more of the rote, routine care online - "automating the automatable" - it frees up capacity for doctors to focus on more complex care that genuinely requires their expertise. Dr. Hwang also explores the changing relationship between providers and patients, and explains why he believes digital health care will ultimately enhance doctor satisfaction and help eliminate doctor shortages.

Jason Hwang
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