The Role of Community in the Digital Health Revolution

Social media tribes can empower grassroots digital health innovation.

By Michael Gaspar, Program Manager, Social Media, HIMSS Media

This blog post is a primer for an upcoming HIMSS Social Media Ambassador FireTalk, hosted by Dr. Chuck Webster (@wareflo) on Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017 at 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. CST.

Seth Godin, in his TED talk The tribes we lead, asserts that the majority of us think that our job is to change everything. Given the complexity and interconnectedness of the health(care) economy, it feels like that’s exactly what we need to do to make a difference. Personally, the ecological relationship between policy, healthcare delivery, technology, payment, socioeconomics, and human behavior makes progress seems unlikely and overwhelming.

However, Godin quickly reminds us that we’re not alone. There’s others like us that want to assemble around a shared desire to improve and challenge our chosen slice of the status quo. Suddenly, our collective inertia transforms an idea into a movement – with a tribe of aligned minds (and hearts) to give it momentum.

The social web enhances our opportunities to diversify our sources for innovation, giving them a digital home, the tools to invite others, and the potential to grow their influence. Going in to its fourth year, the HIMSS Social Media Ambassador program is a group of health IT social media tribe leaders dedicated to realizing the full potential technology can have on our health – helping us find the tribes we belong to, or inspiring the next ones the digital health community needs to meet. Dare to bring forth your ideas and inspire a community to help make them happen. We’ll all be better for it.

Some parting inspiration:

The Beatles didn’t invent teenagers, they decided to move them. – Seth Godin

Discover a tribe that aligns with your passions by following and contributing to these hashtag communities.

Grow your tribe by connecting with ideas and other bright minds during HIMSS17.


in health and IT meet.