The Connected Cancer Patient: Vision for the Future and Recommendations for Action


Accumulating evidence suggests that connected health approaches could lead the way to better health outcomes; for example, by improving patient adherence to medication, facilitating access to specialty care, and reducing referral wait times, among other promising applications. Yet, it is not yet clear what a truly connected health system of the future looks like. In this integrative workshop, third in a series on connected health and cancer, the President’s Cancer Panel and invited participants will envision an interoperable health system that is integrated with—and adapted to—the real-world environments in which people live.

Participants will explore and recommend concrete actions that could accelerate the development of a patient-centered approach to cancer prevention, treatment, and survivorship in order to maximize the potential of connected health technologies. Participants will contemplate and respond to a scenario for a future connected health system by the year 2020 and consider key areas for potential intervention, including the following:

  • Personal health information and data sharing
  • Person- and family-centered care
  • Optimal use of devices, sensors, and apps
  • National health information infrastructure

This workshop is co-chaired by two national leaders in connected health. David K. Ahern, PhD, is Director, Program in Behavioral Informatics and eHealth, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Special Advisor, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute. Bradford W. Hesse, PhD, is Chief, Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch, Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences, National Cancer Institute.

Presentations and moderated discussions among participants will inform the Panel’s recommendations in a formal report to the President of the United States after the conclusion of series workshops.

Join us by live-tweeting during the workshop using #cHealth4Cancer (connected health for cancer).