e-CareManagement blog

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We’re Building a REALLY BIG Health Internet!


How big a network will the Health Internet (aka National Health Information Network) be?

My BOTE (back-of-the-envelope) calculation is that this network could consist of about 301 million nodes.  Here’s my math (pls. clarify or amplify):

  • 300 million individuals in U.S.
  • 700 K doctors
  • 5 K hospitals
  • 295 K — other B2B healthcare entities

Very rough…but I hope you get the point.

So let’s put into perspective press releases from Google or Microsoft announcing that they have developed new “partnerships” (i.e.nodes in the network) for Google Health or Microsoft HealthVault. As an example, today Google announced partnerships with APWU Health Plan and Harvard Pilgrim Health Plan.

These press releases are like announcing that we’ve just completed laying the concrete between Dallas and Fort Worth in the U.S. Interstate Highway System.

They’re relevant and necessary…but only a small part of the story of the whole network.

My point is in no way to minimize the importance of these partnerships (individual nodes in the network), but only to put them in perspective. We’re building a huge Health Internet network, and it’s going to take a while.

Article Series - Healthcare Crosses the Chasm to the Network Economy

  1. Intro to a New Series
  2. What’s a Network Industry? Is Healthcare One?
  3. We’re Building a REALLY BIG Health Internet!

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On October 7th, 2009 at 6:12 am, Will Crawford said:

A very good point. I saw someone point out yesterday that as far as Google Health is concerned, it’s 3 down, 271 to go on the health plan side. And that doesn’t even consider the transaction types. Getting a physician onto the Health Internet is a good thing. Getting them onto the Health Internet AND getting them to do eVisits through it is a good and useful thing.

Mentions on other sites...

  1. arthurwlane on October 7th, 2009 at 6:37 am