Earlier this month, W2O Group invited 150 employees in our collective healthcare practice to the second annual “Go. Ahead In Health” summit in Las Vegas. Usually I stick to the idea of what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but in cases like these, it needs to be shared.

This two-day event is evidence that W2O Group is committed to continuing to build a best-in-class, analytics-driven, integrated global offering serving a diverse set of clients from start-ups to world-leading brands in health.

Individuals from our “Long Hallway” shared exciting case studies of integrated work we created for clients. Our very own thought leaders presented industry insights and led informative panel discussions on trends in healthcare. It would have been impossible to leave the summit without a refreshed and more knowledgeable outlook on our business — but that wasn’t the best part.

Featured guest speakers and experts were hands down the highlight of the summit. They left our team enlightened and pondering what was next. Below are quick synopses with links for more information about two panels and our key note speaker that I am sure will also leave you with a sense of ahhh.

ePatient Advocates

ePatient AdvocatesWe know that patient advocacy has evolved. During this panel, we heard from real life patients turned advocates who have brought their journey online and created followings in social media.

The panel gave real-world perspectives on creating change and activism through social channels and explained how social activation of patient advocacy is changing the game and affording our clients with more opportunities to partner and socialize their messages as well.

Check out these ePatient Advocates and the causes they lead:
Sara Nicastro (@saraknic): diabetes patient advocate and founder of MomentsOfWonderful.com
Wendy Campbell (@bandedwendy): LAP-BAND patient and founder of WLS Success Matters
Adam Pick (@heart_valve): health valve patient and founder of HeartValveSurgery.com

The Activated Social MD:

Understanding, engaging and activating physicians online is the premise for W2O Group’s MDigitalLife. At the summit we heard straight from two MDigitalLife doctors. They shared their experiences and journey becoming media entities, not that they considered themselves as media before. But W2O’s Greg Matthews’ new eBook Missing the Forest for the Trees, now has us looking at them as Media Influencers.

Activated Social MDBoth doctors agreed that Twitter has become not only a tool for news, but a critical piece of the puzzle in treating patients. Dr. Attai said it best: “Patients often don’t tell the whole story at the doctor visit – social media allows us to hear the patient’s voice.” She has found, when talking to breast cancer patients in-office, for one reason or another, patients hold back. On the flip side, when patients go online they open up to the world. Using social media allows her to get the whole picture on how patients in general are dealing with their diseases and can use that information when talking with her patients.

Both doctors are leaders in women’s health and are great examples of thought leaders growing through social media:
Deanna Attai, M.D. (@DrAttai): Breast Surgeon affiliated with UCLA Health Burbank Breast CareLinda Pourmassina, M.D. (@LindaP_MD): Internal Medicine Physician, Women’s Health Columnist with the Seattle Times and Co-Chair ACP Washington Chapter Women in Medicine Committee.

Keynote Speaker:
Hiding in Plain Sight: The Future of Healthcare
Joon Yun, M.D. and President, Palo Alto Investors

Have you ever thought of aging as a disease? I never have. Dr. Joon Yun presented a very intriguing argument and is leading the effort to recognize the science to hack the aging process.

Dr Joon YunDr. Yun is a renowned investor and Managing Partner and President of Palo Alto Investors, LLC, a hedge fund founded in 1989 with over $1 billion in assets under management. He is also the Benefactor of the Palo Alto Longevity Prize, a $1M Life Science competition that challenges teams from all over the world to “hack the code” that regulates our health and life span. The idea behind adaptive homeostatic capacity will make you think.

If you are ready to have your mind blown, check out the video at Palo Alto Longevity Prize. It will have you thinking about what is next and jumping to invest more in your 401k.

Another topic he discussed that will get you thinking is the idea of Second-hand Stress. Read his blog post and tell your chronically stressed-out co-workers to take a chill pill.