While new technologies grabbed many of the headlines during the launch last month of GE’s $6 billion healthymagination initiative, one of the strategy’s linchpins doesn’t involve R&D or breakthrough products at all. It’s the formation of an objective healthymagination advisory board. That newly expanded group — a mix of respected names from medicine, research, academia, business and government — is the initiative’s frontline eyes and ears about new issues, problems and solutions in healthcare. It’s also the body that will ensure that GE’s healthymagination actions live up to our commitments.
The board members were selected because they are uniquely qualified to simultaneously provide firsthand insight — and a much needed reality check. For example, Dr. Devi Prasad Shetty heads a cardiac care hospital in Bangalore, India. His surgical skills give him firsthand knowledge of doctors’ high-tech needs in the E.R. At the same time, his geographic location provides him with an invaluable, personalized view of what doctors across India may need in rural or underserved healthcare settings and the types of technologies that can provide the biggest bang for the lowest buck.
Likewise, because of healthymagination’s global scope, newly added board member James Kondo brings a unique perspective from his efforts in healthcare reform in Japan. He has hands-on experience as vice chairman of the think tank, Health Policy Institute, Japan, as an associate professor at the University of Tokyo and as a member of key government and business committees in Japan focused on healthcare.
As part of the ongoing global launch of GE’s healthymagination initiative, GE Healthcare hosted its first Turkey and Central Asia Media Summit in Istanbul on June 11 to spotlight regional healthcare needs.