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Insights at the intersection of tech touch & human touch within healthcare

  • Writer's pictureStephen Jannise

Celebrating Trailblazing Women in HIT

Part III: Pamela Duncan, Ph.D.

Founder & Clinical Advisor, Care Directions

Professor, Neurology, Wake Forest School of Medicine

At this year’s HIMSS Conference, we’re raising a caffeinated toast to female innovators in health IT as part of the HIT Like a Girl Pod Coffee Networking Event.

Leading up to the event—and in recognition of this year’s International Women’s Day theme, #EmbraceEquity—we’re featuring conversations with some of our favorite women in healthcare. We’ve asked these trailblazers to share insights about the challenges facing healthcare today and the solutions that will define its future.

In Part III of this series, we’re highlighting Pamela Duncan, Ph.D., Founder & Clinical Advisor at Care Directions and Professor of Neurology at Wake Forest School of Medicine. We hope you’ll enjoy these conversations and join us at HIMSS for an inspirational morning of connection and inspiration!

Share something interesting about yourself that others may not know.

I started playing golf in the past few years and now it has become a frequent pastime for me. I wish I had taken it up a long time ago.

What is the most pressing frustration that clinicians have with regard to healthcare technology?

There has been an explosion of health technology applications, yet many of those solutions were developed without consideration for patients’ functional and social abilities to actually use the technology effectively. On the care team side, these applications are generating a great deal of data. But without an effective process for organizing and integrating this data, they can overwhelm clinicians instead of driving usable insights.

Within healthcare technology, what do you believe has the most potential to drive meaningful change?

Virtual care has great potential to close long-standing care gaps, but only if the technology is truly accessible and user-friendly for all. We have to be able to personalize these solutions for the patient's and caregiver's needs and abilities.

In honor of International Women’s Day 2023 (and this year’s theme of #EmbraceEquity), how can healthcare technology support equity?

Equity requires customization for diverse conditions, social environments and abilities. Health technology that is simply designed with great user interfaces could improve access to care and self-managed care. In addition, health technology can provide useful data to support clinicians in engaging and guiding patients through a successful care journey. For example, instead of one in-office blood pressure measure that is influenced by white coat syndrome, community-based blood pressure monitoring would be more valid and a source of immediate patient feedback. The same is true for physical activity monitoring and medication management.


If you'll be at HIMSS23, we hope you'll join us to raise a toast to the power of female collaboration on Tuesday at 7:00 AM in partnership with HIT Like A Girl Pod. Learn more and register here.


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