September 2020 | Volume 2
I’ve spent years, personally and professionally, thinking about the experiences of patients - people - in our health system and working toward changes that improve policy and practice. It still stuns me how much inertia exists to such change, even in the presence of so much evidence that we are not meeting the needs of so many. I continue to believe that seeking first to understand the goals, experiences and preferences of individuals can have a transformative impact on research, innovation, delivery and payment. If we’re just realizing that patients should be primary partners in defining and implementing change, we still have a long way to go. The pandemic floodlights issues that have plagued our healthcare system for decades and it’s now nearly imperative to acknowledge and address racism, disparities in access, and the social factors that are integral to health. These are positive trends, absolutely, but to make them truly ingrained in our healthcare enterprise, we have to ensure they aren’t merely a competitive advantage factor in the marketplace. How? Align with real people experiencing the condition(s). Include them on boards, in research teams, in policy-making bodies (especially the latter). Help them lead and engage as full partners in research questions that matter. Interact, learn from and contribute to the sustainability of communities of patients and caregivers living with the conditions you seek to improve. Patient-centricity should be a action verb, not an adjective in your marketing pitch.
What Ails America
I was in Germany when I got sick. Late at night in Munich on December 3, 2019, I was admitted to a hospital with abdominal pain and then released the next morning. In Connecticut, on December 15, I was admitted to the hospital for an appendectomy and released after less than twenty-four hours. In Florida on vacation, on December 23, I was admitted to the hospital for tingling and numbness in my hands and feet but released the following day.
Health care conferences should embrace patients as collaborators
Health care conferences like the North American Cystic Fibrosis Conference are as much professional events and critical evaluators of progress as they are times to connect with old friends and make new ones. Almost universally, they are missing one thing: patients.
Health care conferences without patients are like birthday parties without the birthday girl or graduation parties without the graduates.
Professionalism Revealed: Rethinking Quality Improvement in the Wake of a Pandemic
The response of clinicians to the Covid-19 pandemic has been remarkable but unsurprising. As the hard work of improving health care delivery resumes, their performance should serve as a reminder that professionalism in medicine is a resource to harness and not squander.
How Foundational Moments In Medicaid’s History Reinforced Rather Than Eliminated Racial Health Disparities
The past months have laid bare the inextricable connection between two pandemics in the United States: COVID-19, which is disproportionately affecting Black Americans, and systemic racism, which has set the foundation for the stark health disparities we see today. Black people are, for instance, twice as likely to die of heart disease and are 50 percent more likely to have high blood pressure at younger ages than White peers.
Combatting COVID-19 With Real-World Evidence
Before any COVID-19 vaccine is approved, millions of people will have contracted this virus. While some will die, others will survive the virus, only to face long-term consequences to their health. But a vaccine isn’t the panacea many assume it will be. Even when it becomes available, the virus won’t go away. There will still be a percentage of people who contract the illness, so it is vital that we understand how best to detect, trace, and treat it in varying populations.

Passion + Quality = Change That Matters
I embrace the powerful opportunities in our evolving health care landscape. I founded Momentum Health Strategies to be a catalyst for change through continuous learning, diverse engagement and thoughtful policy and practice initiatives. I deliver innovative, strategic thinking and a passion for improving the patient experience. My personal drive and dedication to high-quality results will help you navigate the competitive terrain you face and convert your vision to action.

Momentum Health Strategies

Jennifer L Bright, MPA
(703) 628 - 0534