Digitizing Healthcare, Because Our Lives Matter

This article originally appeared on IBM Big Data & Analytics Hub.

The United States spends around 17-18% of its GDP on healthcare every year. When you put this into dollar numbers, it is a mind-boggling $2.9 trillion.

Unfortunately, that spending will grow at a faster rate now due to baby boomers becoming an aging population, and they are the largest demographic in the U.S. (Baby boomers are about 76 million, which accounts for 25% of the population of the U.S.). The healthcare related spending is expected to grow at a faster pace than the under 5% annual rate it grew over the last decade.

Unless the U.S. gets this spiraling healthcare spending under control, in a few short years we will be spending almost 25% of our entire GDP in healthcare trying to fix people’s failing health, instead of spending it somewhere else where it is desperately needed. Obviously, we can’t stop the aging population, but we can make the healthcare system more efficient. Overall, chronic diseases account for about 86% of the health care spending in USA. Severe chronic conditions such as heart disease, arthritis, asthma and diabetes alone cost 33% of the total spending.

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A Proud Storytelling Moment: Know Your Elevator Pitches

– By @AndyThurai

This story originally featured on Innovation Insights @ Wired magazine.

The year was 2002. Right after 9/11 everyone was hurting, especially the telco sector got almost wiped out – Nortel, Lucent, Alcatel, Avaya, Worldcom, MCI, and the list goes on. Some of them got completely wiped out, and some of them resurfaced years later. Anyway, the story is not about them.

I was working for Nortel at that time. I got laid off sometime in 2002, along with our entire division, when the impact hit the company. Sitting at home, living off severance and my wife’s salary/benefits, the opportunities were very hard to come by. Even the ones far and few between were crowded with lines of people wearing suits like in that movie Dick & Jane.

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