Using Technology as a Wellness Delivery Model

Bill Hettler, MD

Since this handout was submitted months before the date of the presentation, please find the most up to date materials at:


A recent journal of the AMA article states:


“Access to medical information via the Internet has the potential to speed the transformation of the patient-physician relationship from that of physician authority ministering advice and treatment to that of shared decision making between patient and physician.”


The use of the Internet for professionals involved in Wellness Promotion activities has grown steadily since the early 1990’s.  The days of pure, facility based delivery of wellness and health promotion services are over. There is a growing group of citizens who will expect to get their information and interactions through an electronic medium.


Teams of people who understand the expectations of the people they intend to serve will staff the successful programs and those teams will have the vision and skills needed to interact successfully in this new, electronic environment.


Years ago Bill Gates talked about “Business at the Speed of Thought”.  Imagine delivering wellness and health promotion services at the speed of thought.  More and more people are getting used to finding goods and services on line, 24X7. Providing the right information, at the right time, and in the right format, will increase the likelihood of success.


Kemper and Mettler have just released their new book, , Information Therapy: Prescribed Information as a Reimbursable Medical Service. J. Edward Hill, MD, FAAFP, Chair, Board of Trustees, American Medical Association has recognized the impact that this concept has for the field of medicine.  He states, "Information Therapy's clearly identified strategies will improve overall health as much as expensive pharmaceuticals and new technologies. This remarkable book will have a profound impact on health care access, quality, cost and outcomes."


Wellness and health promotion professionals can learn much from the innovations of e-commerce. We must overcome the reluctance to embrace automated compensation systems that can be merged with wellness and health promotion delivery systems.


Wellness and health promotion services and materials have value. Each provider will need to translate his or her unique gifts into the modern medium.  Digital audio and visual content can be produced in little more time than it takes to observe or speak. Examples of software that make such production include:  Sound Forge, Adobe text, still, and video products, FrontPage, and MacroMedia products such as DreamWeaver. The next large wave of people is here.  The “Gen-Y” group will influence our society just as the “Boomers” have. Make sure you are ready to meet their expectations for content and medium.