A reading club with a view to the future

066 Eric Topol: The Patient Will See You Now

Digital health technologies empower patients to take control of their health and democratize healthcare.

Eric Topol: The Patient Will See You Now


In "The Patient Will See You Now," Topol explores how digital health technologies, such as smartphones and wearable devices, are empowering patients to take control of their health and democratize healthcare. He argues that these technologies will transform the medical field by making it more personalized, predictive, and preventive.


Title: The Patient Will See You Now

Author: Eric Topol

Publishing year: 2015

Publisher: Basic Books

Length in hours: 11 hours and 16 minutes

5 main ideas

  1. Digital health technologies, such as wearable devices and mobile apps, are transforming healthcare by empowering patients to take control of their health.
  2. The democratization of healthcare through digital health technologies will lead to more personalized, predictive, and preventive care.
  3. Doctors must adapt to this new digital landscape by becoming more patient-centered and using digital tools to improve patient outcomes.
  4. The use of big data and artificial intelligence in healthcare has the potential to revolutionize medical research and treatment.
  5. The ethical implications of digital health technologies must be carefully considered to ensure patient privacy and safety.
Eric Topol: The Patient Will See You Now

5 funny quotes

  1. "The future of healthcare is not a sci-fi movie."
  2. "Wearable technology is the new black."
  3. "The medical profession has long suffered from acronymitis."
  4. "In the digital age, it's not just the geeks who will inherit the earth, it's also the patients."
  5. "If you think about it, the smartphone is the ultimate wearable device."

5 thought-provoking quotes​

  1. "The greatest disruptor of healthcare is digital technology, which is enabling us to access, assess, and augment our own health."
  2. "Medicine, in the 21st century, is becoming less about the doctor-patient relationship and more about the patient-doctor relationship."
  3. "We can democratize healthcare by giving patients more control over their own data, so they can share it with whomever they want, for whatever purposes they want."
  4. "The most profound change in medicine will come from the patient herself."
  5. "In the near future, the most important member of the medical team will be the patient."

5 dilemmas

  1. How do we balance the benefits of personalized medicine with concerns around data privacy and security?
  2. How do we ensure that the democratization of healthcare data doesn't lead to new disparities and inequalities in access to care?
  3. How do we ensure that the increased use of digital health technologies doesn't lead to a further erosion of the patient-doctor relationship?
  4. How do we ensure that the hype around new medical technologies doesn't lead to unrealistic expectations and false hope for patients?
  5. How do we balance the need for medical innovation with concerns around regulation and patient safety?

5 examples

  1. Dave deBronkart, aka "e-Patient Dave," who became an advocate for patient empowerment after successfully using the internet to diagnose and treat his own rare form of cancer.
  2. Dr. Eric Topol himself, who used a smartphone-based electrocardiogram to diagnose his own heart attack while on an airplane.
  3. Regina Holliday, a patient rights activist and artist who created the Walking Gallery, a group of patient advocates who wear custom-painted jackets that tell their medical stories.
  4. Amanda Wurz, a patient who used a mobile app to track her symptoms and successfully self-diagnose a rare autoimmune disease.
  5. Dr. Peter Diamandis, founder of the X Prize Foundation and Singularity University, who is using technology to transform healthcare through initiatives like the Tricorder X Prize.

Referenced books

  1. "The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer" by Siddhartha Mukherjee
  2. "The Innovator's Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail" by Clayton M. Christensen
  3. "The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right" by Atul Gawande
  4. "Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End" by Atul Gawande
  5. "The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind" by Michio Kaku

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"The most profound change in medicine will come from the patient herself."

Eric Topol: The Patient Will See You Now
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