Academic and medical journals — yawn, right? Not anymore. Today (at the Connected Health conference in Boston) marks the launch of a new kind of journal, which is marking a new kind of medicine, actually: the Journal of Participatory Medicine, an all-online pub that's open and free-of-charge for all to read and enjoy.
The content, which will eventually include video clips and other multimedia stuff, is entirely dedicated to the ways in which patients are getting more involved in their own healthcare.
I'm particularly excited about this because I was invited to become a member of the editorial board. This means I get to spend time looking for interesting submissions, review a number of articles, and even do a little writing myself now and then. For the inaugural issue, I was asked to write the piece setting the tone for our future product reviews of the flood of new online health tools we hear so much about. Click here to check out my article, "Reviewing Health Tools: A Community Matter."
In the meantime, this being a specialized kind of a launch for a specialized audience, the group behind it decided not to fork out the money to publish their press release over BusinessWire. Instead, they're emailing it to key contacts and talking directly to interested parties. Assuming that includes some of you all, I'm publishing the bulk of the (surprisingly lengthy) press release here today, FYI:
For immediate release
October 21, 2009
Improving health care: Journal of Participatory Medicine
will document methods that work for patient/provider collaboration
Patient engagement and patient empowerment are popular topics, with hundreds of thousands of Google hits, but there's precious little information on how to do them well. A new academic journal being launched this week, the Journal of Participatory Medicine, aims to change that....
"Because health professionals can't do it alone"
Participatory Medicine is a new approach that encourages and expects active patient involvement in all aspects of care. It builds on the work documented at the e-patients.net blog, whose slogan is "Because health professionals can't do it alone." The group's landmark 2007 paper "E-Patients: How They Can Help Us Heal Healthcare" tells many stories of engaged, empowered e-patients who substantially improved their own outcome and the outcomes of others by supplementing or even going beyond what their physicians alone could do...
Now, the Journal of Participatory Medicine will move the field from anecdote to science, with articles on principles, methods and evidence-based outcomes.
Free continuous updates online
The Journal will publish continuously and will be freely accessible to the public at http://jopm.org ...
Available online now is a collection of invited essays that serve as the "launch pad" from which the journal will grow. In their opening editorial "Why the Journal?" the editors write, "We consider this introductory issue an invitation for you to join us as we create a robust journal that will serve a growing community of concerned individuals and professionals."
Mission: To transform the culture of medicine
The Journal's mission is to transform the culture of medicine by providing an evidence base for participatory health and medicine. It aims to advance both science and practice, focusing on six content areas: research articles, editorials, narratives, case reports, reviews, and updates on related research in other media. It will explore how participation affects outcomes, resources, and relationships in healthcare; which interventions increase participation; and the types of evidence that provide the most reliable answers.
Importance of a broad-based peer review process
The Journal uses a new, broad-based peer review process to significantly improve on traditional academic journals. While still managed by experienced journal editors, JoPM's peer review process will be open to a far broader set of minds for scrutiny of methods and analysis. Improved accuracy and effectiveness are vital as the population ages and healthcare costs continue to rise...
Leadership of the Journal and the Society is shared between physicians and laypeople.
Some of the articles featured in the first issue:
• Investor and futurist Esther Dyson on "Why in the world 'participatory medicine'?"
• Longtime JAMA editor George Lundberg MD and former AARP board chair Joanne Disch PhD, RN: "Why healthcare professionals should be interested in PM"
• Kate Lorig RN, Dr.P.H., Director of Stanford School of Medicine's Patient Education Research Center: "Why people should be interested in PM,"
• David Lansky, CEO of Pacific Business Group on Health and former Senior Director at the Markle Foundation, on "Why payers should be interested in PM"
• Kurt Stange MD, PhD, Case Western Reserve University and editor of the Annals of Family Medicine, and Gilles Frydman, founder of the ACOR.org network of cancer communities, on "Building an interdisciplinary field of inquiry and practice"
• and many more articles
Follow the journal on Twitter: @jourPM and #WhyPM
Welcome to our world, JoPM!