This Week Health

Joseph C. Kvedar, MD

Vice President

Partners Health Care

Joseph C. Kvedar, MD is the Vice President at Partners Health Care, Associate Professor of Dermatology at Harvard Medical School and President of the American Telehealth Association.

Dr. Kvedar is creating a new model of healthcare delivery, developing innovative strategies to move care from the hospital or doctor’s office into the day-to-day lives of patients.

Dr. Kvedar is leveraging information technology – cell phones, computers, networked devices and remote health monitoring tools – to improve care delivery. Partners connected health programs are also helping providers and patients better manage chronic conditions, maintain health and wellness and improve adherence, engagement and clinical outcomes. Based on the technology platform developed at Partners, a personalized health technology company was launched and later acquired by a leading insurance company to support its program encouraging healthy behavior and wellness education among employee populations. In 2013, Dr. Kvedar launched Wellocracy, a leading source of impartial, easy-to-understand information on new personal “self-health” technologies like activity trackers, wireless devices and mobile apps to empower people to get and stay healthy.

He is internationally recognized for his leadership and vision in the field of connected health, and has authored over 90 publications on the subject. Dr. Kvedar serves as a strategic advisor at Qualcomm Life, West Health Institute, Puretech Ventures and BD Technologies, and is a mentor at Blueprint Health, providing guidance and insight to developing companies. Dr. Kvedar is also a mentor at the Harvard Innovation Lab and serves as a judge for its President's Challenge for Entrepreneurship.



One interesting story about telehealth, a woman whose home is 50 miles south of Boston has a special needs son. Special needs takes an army of people to get them out of the house. And she has 3 other kids. So the fact that we were able to take care of him without her doing all that, she was almost in tears.
There’s a law that says if you are a Medicare recipient, to get telehealth you have to be in a health profession shortage area. It’s a very 1990s view of telehealth but it's the law. It's being ignored now because the law got thrown out during the public health emergency. But unless we change it, we will have a very strong downward draft on enthusiasm around telehealth because as you know, when Medicare goes, so does the rest of the payer community.
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