Thursday, 11 August 2011

The 5 Excellences and Collaborative Medicine...

Those of you who have been following this blog know that we look at well-being and particularly how to measure it. Given the latest trends in Wikinomics, citizen created content and data from unofficial sources, there is a movement to encourage citizen participation in creating knowledge even in health.

I recently have discovered Cheng Man Ching who was a famous for his technique of Tai chi and also for his mastery of the 5 Excellences:
1) Poetry
2) Painting
3) Calligraphy
4) Medicine
5) Tai Chi

The Tao teaches that learning these 5 Excellences will help you to attain a balanced and fulfilled life.

Medicine is the one that I am reflecting on today especially in terms of progress. Doctors are to know about medicine. They are the experts and the authoritative sources. Why does the Tao recommend that all people should know about medicine? Of course, time and place will dictate how one determines the interpretation of this.

But, what does that mean for the health dimension of well-being? Since, I came across Chang Man Ching’s 5 Excellences, I added the Lancet to my Google reader. Every day, I am getting all the latest in medical news. These are a few of the links I found from Lancet which have to do with people being able to contribute proactively to their health and to create new knowledge around it:
Don Tapscott discusses participation by patients for a new model health care and the study of medicine:

Macrowikinomics: Collaborative Health Care from Macrowikinomics on Vimeo.

There is also Open MRS which is to improve health care delivery in resource-constrained environments by coordinating a global community that creates a robust, scalable, user-driven, open source medical record system platform.

Open MRS envision a world where:
  • Models exist to implement health IT in a way that decreases costs, increases capacity, and lessens the disparities between wealthy and resource-poor environments.
  • Open standards enable people to use health IT systems to share information and reduce effort.
  • Concepts and processes can be easily shared to enable health care professionals and patients to work together more effectively.
  • Medical software helps ease the work of health care providers and administrators to provide them with the tools to improve health outcomes all over the world.
Finally, this app looks really interesting especially in terms of data collection on life satisfaction perhaps. PsyMate  provides a "film" rather than a "snapshot" of a patient's mental state. It monitors daily life experience and behavior over a period of time and not as a one-off. It also offers the possibility of interactivity with the patient.  While this app is made for collecting data on patients, I wonder, could this (or something like this) be used for collecting survey data on a society?

Next post...calligraphy.


1 comment:

  1. Also worth nothing in ancient China, the ideal doctor was the one who was able to teach a healthy lifestyle in order to prevent diseases. Doctors got paid when they were successful (in keeping their patrons healthy) - not when the patients got sick (which was considered a sign of failure!)