Introduction – Medicine in the Digital Age

MOOC Summaries - Medicine in the Digital Age


“Welcome… Meet the Professor – Dr. Kirsten Ostherr… Meet the Professor – Dr. Vartabedian… Course Goals and Content… “


  • Welcome: Meet the Professor - Dr. Kirsten Ostherr
  • Welcome: Meet the Professor - Dr. Vartabedian
  • Course Goals and Content

Welcome: Meet the Professor – Dr. Kirsten Ostherr

  • Kirsten Ostherr is a professor in the English department at Rice University
  • Her background is in film and media studies and she has written a couple of books.
  • One was about public health films and contagion and the other one was about ways that we’ve used audiovisual technologies to teach doctors and patients how to see health and disease.
  • She found that interacting with people who use these stuff in their day-to-day practice was incredibly exciting and meaningful.
  • She started looking for collaborators and found Dr. Vartabedian’s blog, 33 Charts.
  • They had a lot of overlapping interests even though they were coming from completely different angles.
  • They’ve been collaborating for a few years and taught a few courses together.
Chop Chop MOOCs’ summary of Medicine in the Digital Age

Welcome: Meet the Professor – Dr. Vartabedian

  • Dr. Vartabedian is a pediatric gastroenterologist at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston.
  • In 2006, he wrote a book about infant colic.
  • He dutifully started a blog with the intent of selling lots of books, but realized quickly that having the blog was a real window to the world.
  • His blog is called 33 Charts where he addresses some of these issues that face doctors at the intersection with technology.
  • Dr. Ostherr found him through his public writing.
  • They started a course together at Rice University called Medicine in the Age of Networked Intelligence and it was a real success with the undergraduates at Rice University.
  • After that, they decided to turn it into a MOOC.
Chop Chop MOOCs’ summary of Medicine in the Digital Age

Course Goals and Content

  • Digital health companies raised between $4.1 and $6.5 billion in venture capital in 2014; at the low end, it represents a 125% year-over-year increase from 2013.
  • Breakdown by the 10 most active sub-sectors in digital health.
  • Rock Health and Start Up Health have lots of resources on their websites.
  • Business opportunity is clear; discuss broader social, cultural, and technological contexts to understand the various trends.
  • Social networks, and other digital tools have thrown up new questions.
  • Week two: focus on what digital health means for doctors and health care professionals.
  • Week three: what it means for patients and consumers.
  • Final week: thought leaders think about the future of digital healthcare.
Chop Chop MOOCs’ summary of Medicine in the Digital Age

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photo: depositphotos/HonzaHruby
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