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Innovation + Medicine = Change @ TEDMED

If you were to buy a new car today and drive it from New York City to Los Angeles, stopping along the way at dealers to service the car, when you arrived 3,000 miles later, the dealer would know exactly what was done to your car throughout your journey and what needs to be done next.

TEDMED_WH_RGB [1]But, when we go to doctors, we fill out paper forms and give our medical history every time. Why do our cars get better care then our bodies? Why hasn’t medicine kept up with the times to ensure the most effective care for all of us?

Every one of us has experienced frustration with a situation like this of some kind … and, to be honest, it is getting old. It is time for change. But the problems are so huge and so complicated that I have often wondered what would be needed to start moving us in the right direction. I think I have found one of the answers: TEDMED [2].
Learn More
TED Talks [3]
Great Challenges Day [4]


In a few weeks, from April 16–19, Stacy Lewis, YSC’s Chief Program Officer and Deputy Chief Executive, and I will be attending TEDMED for the first time. TEDMED is where innovators and leaders from many disciplines come together to try and create a better future in health and medicine … I like to think of it as Silicon Valley meets medicine.

If you are not familiar with TED Talks, these are 20-minute talks by leaders from every field to help push thinking and innovation. TEDMED is TED Talks [3], focused on medicine … with a twist. It is a large conference in D.C., where leaders from medical colleges, teaching hospitals, government agencies and nonprofit institutions from around the world come together to create a better future in health and medicine. Real change by the right people: Cool, right?

Stacy and I both received scholarships to attend and will be participating in a variety of different conversations — to ensure the voice of young women with breast cancer is heard — to push the thinking that we know needs to be pushed.

One part of the conference that I am most excited about is the Great Challenges Day [4]. This part of the conference is about leveraging the science of storytelling and working in small groups to search for a more complete understanding of the key issues that impede a healthier future. I will be participating in the following conversations:


At the same time, Stacy will be participating in these conversations:


The whole point of TEDMED’s Great Challenges Day is not to solve these complex problems but rather to provide America and the world with an unbiased view of these challenges, incorporating thoughtful and very different perspectives. TEDMED’s belief is that through an open, ongoing dialog we can foster a much better understanding of each challenge and then make real change that will make a difference.

I am honored to have been invited to participate in this important conversation and will bring what I learn back to YSC and the community of young women diagnosed with breast cancer we serve.

More to come …