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More Disruption Please!

by Derek Hedges, Senior VP of Business Development

Yes, I’m back, but I won’t be writing about cancer and HIT for a while. Instead, I want to tell you about one of the coolest ideas to emerge from athenahealth in years. Some call it “Ecosystem" or “MDP" and some just say “that BD (business development) thing.”

Either way, here are the deets …

Last summer we kicked off our first More Disruption Please (MDP) conference in Maine with the goal of bringing together entrepreneurs, innovators and venture capitalists to be smarter, better connected and more equipped to overthrow established approaches to health care delivery so we can make it better, cheaper, and more accountable to the physicians and patients we all serve. It was a smash hit and we’re doing it again, only bigger and better than just a three-day confab on the Maine coast.

We’re extending the scope of More Disruption Please beyond a conference, into a continuously running program. To that end, we will be hosting code-a-thons, hack-a-thons, webinars, conferences, meet-ups, and other exciting events here at our Watertown, Massachusetts, headquarters and throughout Boston. We’re looking for the kind of bright minds that can fix health care by generating disruptive and innovative ideas that count.  You can join us at www.athenahealth.com/disruption.

This past weekend here in Watertown, we hosted a new MDP event, a Code-a-thon in connection with the Health 2.0 Matchpoint Conference. Almost 100 developers gathered to come up with the most promising new application to help fix health care—and compete for $10,000 in prizes and travel.  

The winning team, No Sleep Kills, met up at the event and, in a mere eight hours, put together an amazing application to help people with sleep exhaustion and sleep apnea problems. On May 15, athenahealth CEO Jonathan Bush invited them up on stage at the Health 2.0 Conference in Boston to give them Amazon Kindles—a great example of a disruptive technology! Congrats to the winners!

More Disruption Please is a crucial part of our business development strategy. We really want to bend the innovation curve in U.S. health care and we need you to help. The ultimate goal of the program is to harness the power of our cloud-based platform and our provider base, and partner with new and exciting companies to keep driving value to our doctors. We can do it through formalized revenue-sharing models in our broader ecosystem. We will keep meeting new companies and help them accelerate their growth inside our evolving and flourishing ecosystem of partners.

In our next update, I will share the larger vision for our Ecosystem Initiative. Stay tuned… we’ve got some great things heading your way.

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