Berci Mesko is a medical futurist, interested in bringing disruptive technologies to medicine & the wider spectrum healthcare. He is the managing director of Webicina.com which curates medical social media resources for patients and medical professionals.
MC: You are a speaker and advisor at Doctors 2.0 event. You obviously like the event. Why?
Berci: This is one of (if not) the best events where all the stakeholders of medicine can meet and interact about the implications of digital solutions in healthcare. It includes start-ups, policy makers, doctors, nurses, students and e-patients. The whole scale with a huge range of interesting topics to be covered.
MC: How can/do events like Doctors 2.0 disrupt the digital health ecosystem?
Berci: The stakeholders constantly interact every day but such real life events and interactions can generate amazing ideas which, later on, can be discussed and worked out through social media channels.
MC: You mentioned in your talk at Doctors 2.0 that rather than dealing with an information overload we are dealing with a filter failure. Please elaborate for our readers.
Berci: Without doubt, everyone must face a huge amount of information every day, therefore the question is not whether we should take part in such discussions, but about how to deal with the amount. I think finding the right filters is the solution, backed by skills acquired in digital literacy.
MC: Is there danger of too much technological integration. Is it possible that through creating too many effective filters we end up in a world with no anonymity, randomness or ambiguity?
Berci: The danger is imminent. If we use technology too massively and without real backing then medicine loses its essence – the human interaction between doctor and patient. On the other hand, if we do not use technology, it’s impossible to give a good enough care to our patients. Therefore the ultimate goal is to find a balance between these.
MC: You have found a solution to the problem of filter failure with medicina.com through digital curation. Can you tell us about another challenge that you face as a health professional and are still looking to find an ideal solution to?
Berci: A tsunami of technological changes and advances is coming to medicine and healthcare. I’m working on several solutions to prepare all stakeholders for what is coming next. This is why I published a white paper, The Guide to the Future of Medicine and this is why I’m working on my second book that will cover this huge topic.
MC: Why do you think digital literacy is so important to physicians?
Berci: As using digital channels and solutions become an integral part of our lives, they move toward medicine as well. Acquiring skills in digital literacy is the only way patients and their caregivers can properly and safely use new tools for practicing medicine and health management.
MC: In your TEDx talk you mention the 1925 prediction of remote medical services. We are getting closer to this. What is your opinion of telemedicine and where do we stand in this field?
Berci: The number of such devices has been rapidly increasing, but again, we must keep the human touch in the interaction between patients and doctors by implementing the right digital tools to strengthen the power and opportunities of practicing medicine.
MC: You hold a PHD in genomics. What are the most exciting trends/opportunities for genomics currently?
Berci: I cannot wait to reach a point where everyone can access the data of their own genome and use it accurately in their health management or when prescribing therapies. A few days ago, Illumina announced the $1,000 genome, now I’m waiting for the $100 genome.
MC: Your favourite book?
Berci: I read so many books that it’s hard to choose only one, but I recently finished Michio Kaku’s The Future of Physics and I loved that.
MC: What does your typical day look like?
Berci: I teach at medical schools, write my second book, give about 100 presentations a year worldwide, do consultant projects for large companies and constantly communicate with a lot of people in medicine globally.
MC: Berci you are a medical futurist. What is going to happen in the future?
Berci: The best thing I can do as a medical futurist is to extrapolate from today’s key trends and try to predict those trends, solutions and elements that can shape the future of medicine. I did this when published my white paper, but one thing is certain, patients will be in the center of the healthcare process.
Thank you we look forward to seeing you at Doctors 2.0 & You!
To hear more from Berci, join MedCrunch at Doctors 2.0™ & You on June 5-6th at the beautiful Cité Internationale Universitaire de Paris. With two days of 20 parallel sessions, ground-breaking speakers and the plenary, the conference will explore how physicians use new technologies, Web 2.0 tools, and social media to communicate with other health care professionals, patients, payers, pharmaceutical companies and public agencies. This is the best networking platform for digital physicians in Europe.
Click here to get your early bird tickets!