Patient-Centeredness & the Persistent Fax Machine

Patient-centered care is one of the six factors of quality in healthcare. Yet, there are many opportunities for improved patient-centered care.

To anyone that has had to fill out a form or receive a form from a healthcare provider or practice, there is a great likelihood of being told to ‘fax it back’.

Yet, how many have access to a fax machine at home?

Next, you are working to find a way to get the information back to or from the healthcare facility or organization that is not through a fax machine.

Knowing most do not have a fax machine, and encountering this issue, this is one example of an opportunity to improve patient-centered care.

In the bigger picture, healthcare has opportunities to explore the healthcare experience through the eyes of patients and unveil the blind spots to truly address patient-centeredness.

This is just one example but there are many others.

The article here provides several factors that contribute to the persistent challenge however, at some point, we will not be using fax machines….

In the meantime, one area of impact is on quality through that patient experience.


~ Dr. Kelley

February 11th was National Inventor’s Day!

Last Monday was National Inventor’s Day!

To celebrate the day, I attended an event held on behalf of UCONN at the Mark Twain House in Hartford CT.

I learned quite a bit…

February 11th is National Inventor’s Day because it is Thomas Edison’s birthday (inventor of the 💡). The first patent issued from the USPTO was in 1790.

The first patent was issued to Samuel Langhorne Clemens (aka Mark Twain). A total of 3 patents were issued that year. Today, there are approximately 320K patents issued each year.

Dr. Eric Hintz, a historian from the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for Innovation and Invention spoke to us tonight on several historical ecosystems and their foundational areas of invention influence.


One thing I found quite interesting is that Henry Ford wasn’t the first one to create cars. They were first called ‘horseless carriages’ by Hiram Percy Maxim in 1896. He invented them in Connecticut nearly 20 years before Ford due to market saturation of the bicycle.

If you ever get the chance to go to the Mark Twain house, I encourage it. The same is true for the Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for Innovation and Invention. I had the pleasure of speaking there two years ago next month and it was a fabulous experience. Below is a memory of that event in their 2017 Annual Report.


The fax machine still exists… in healthcare

Sometimes I am a new patient and it often goes something like this:

“If you can fax us the forms back that’ll be great.”

“I don’t have a fax. Can I email?”

“No. You’ll have to fax or bring in with you for your appt.” 🤦‍♀️.

Bidirectional secure portals do help and cut down on the #fax issue in my experience.

Read on to learn more about fax machines in this article by CNBC:

Health tech is so old-fashioned that Google has to adapt its cloud service to work with fax machines. 

What do you think? Any of your own stories to share?

Have a great day,


Who else enjoys a good book?

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Who else is a reader?
I try to read 6-12 new non-fiction books per year.
These 3 came today:
Have you read any of them yet? Do you have a recommendation for me to add to my list this year? 
Let me know,
Kind regards,

Being a Founder and a Female

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I am a founder who happens to be a female.

Twice this week I had a conversation about the question I’ve been asked often on panels.

The question is some variation of “How do you manage being a female in business?”

I don’t like this question.

I wish it wasn’t a question that was asked of women.

I don’t think men are asked, “How do you manage being a man in business?”

The reason I don’t like the question is because I don’t think about my gender when I am doing the work I need to do.

I am only concerned with having the knowledge, understanding and skills to be able to do what I’ve set out to do. I also happen to be a woman.

I lead with that every day.

While I don’t like the question, I will continue to answer it that way until it no longer needs to be asked.

“I’ll be back in a few minutes..”

This is the truth… (I chuckled when I read it).

This reminded me of when I’d come back from the cafeteria around 3:30pm (having started at 7am) with something I grabbed to bring back and eat for lunch on the unit. The unit secretary would see me and tell me something like:

“Your patient in room 10 needs pain medicine, room 5 is due in radiology, room 8’s parent is on line 2 and you have new orders for room 1.” I would just look at her and think, ‘how are you keeping a straight face as you are telling me this news? (and I can’t do all 4 of those things at the same time😉)’.

Nurses are a Blessing

Post originally appeared on Dr. Tiffany Kelley RN on November 28th, 2017