I’m sick of the word “patient.” (How punny)
What used to be simply defined as “a person receiving or registered to receive medical treatment” has become commercialized biology.
We are no longer people.
We are products on a shelf, numbers on a page, ink stains on a fax transmission, and zeroes and ones existing only in data centers polluting the earth with their carbon footprints. Patients today are loss-leading, actuary-derived, health-economic meat on a stick.
While I do not believe this is the opinion of most humans who work in Healthcare, it is wholeheartedly the dogma of the very intentions that went into deciding our current system in the 1970s.
So while every fridge-magnet bingo variation of “patient voice, patient-centric, patient journey, patient experience, patient data” continues to rent space in the minds of “Big Group-Think,” I believe therein lies the “hidden-in-plain-sight” opportunity for patients to immediately seize upon.
And seize upon it we shall, but not as patients — as consumers.
This is not a new idea, as studies around this concept date back to the early 1990s, and little has changed, save for that instituted by citizen uprisings, acts of lobbying and legislation, and the creation of federal protections by certain presidential administrations. All of this is explained in the OffScrip Health history series THe Cancer Mavericks. But this post is not about our documentary.
Americans are more aware than ever before that our Healthcare system does not put consumer (read: patient) needs first and is therefore not incentivized to change much, if at all.
I don’t know about you, but I’d say there’s a storm coming. The next great consumer health revolution is upon us.