By Olivia R. Weidner, DHIT Global Intern | July 27, 2020
On Friday, July 24th, 2020, the Digital Health Institute for Transformation (DHIT) hosted the ninth installment of its digital web series in collaboration with the ASSIST Center at North Carolina State University.
The DHIT Frequency Webinar Series, which takes place biweekly, is a way to keep our community connected while many work from home. Each segment will be co-hosted by DHIT’s President, Michael Levy, and Adam Curry, ASSIST Innovation Ecosystem Director. The series will spotlight distinguished guests from across the ecosystem to discuss the state of digital health in the time of COVID-19.
Amidst widespread fear and uncertainty, DHIT explores the role of digital health in the global response to COVID-19, gaining insight into the ways this crisis has catalyzed the usage and acceptance of telehealth, remote monitoring, and other digital health technologies. Last week’s panelists included:
- Chris Lamb, Co-Founder & CTO, Device Solutions
- John Sotomayor, Founding Patent Attorney, Soto IP
- Michael Ruhlen, Director, Charlotte AHEC
Friday’s webinar marked the application deadline for DHIT and ASSIST’s virtual incubator. With the conclusion of submissions, DHIT Frequency welcomed panelists that represented three respective program and innovation champions: Device Solutions, Soto IP, and Charlotte AHEC. First was Chris Lamb, Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer at Device Solutions. Next was John Sotomayor, Founding Patent Attorney at Soto IP. Finally, DHIT and ASSIST welcomed back previous panelist Dr. Michael Ruhlen, who serves as the Director of Charlotte AHEC. Over the course of the hour, host Michael Levy posed questions to help the audience and the digital health ecosystem get to know each panelist and their respective organization.
Levy began by asking each guest to describe the organization with which they are affiliated. Dr. Michael Ruhlen, Director of Charlotte AHEC, kicked off the conversation. NC AHEC, which stands for North Carolina Area Health Education Centers, encompasses 9 different regions of the state. Ruhlen is Director of AHEC for the Charlotte region, which serves 8 counties and is centered around Mecklenburg County. AHEC was founded with the goal of providing educational programming, professional development, and performance improvement for healthcare providers and systems. This includes pipeline programming, which targets high school students and provides opportunities for experience in medicine, as well as continuing education credits for established healthcare providers. Finally, AHEC provides support to independent practices in the area, ensuring access to electronic medical systems and other digital tools. Chris Lamb, Co-founder and CTO, described his experience working at Device Solutions. Founded in 2003, Device Solutions was intended to leverage skills with connecting and designing wireless devices. According to Lamb, it became clear early on that connected apps and devices were the way of the future, and with the .com boom, there was an increased demand for communication capabilities anytime, anywhere. Speaking on behalf of Soto IP, John Sotomayor described the company as a strategic advisory group that plays prosecutorial and educational roles in helping people to protect their intellectual property. Much of Soto IP’s work consists of guiding clients through the patent filing process.
After getting to know the basics about each panelist’s workplace, Levy sought to dig deeper into motivators and each guest’s reason for getting up in the morning. Every answer was tied directly to the respondent’s work, suggesting that our panel derives a profound sense of meaning from their chosen livelihoods. Sotomayor told Levy: