Students at Rocky Vista University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine (RVUCOM) with an interest in digital health are now enrolled in the new Digital Health Track. The advent of digital health – the integration of technology into healthcare to improve a patient’s wellbeing – has created a need for physicians who are knowledgeable about its emerging tools.
“[RVUCOM] is a pioneer of digital health education,” said Cole Zanetti, DO, MPH, and Regan Stiegmann, DO ‘14, MPH, Co-Directors of the Track on RVU’s Colorado and Southern Utah locations, respectively. “Being the only medical institution in the country longitudinally training in digital health, we are setting a higher bar for medical education worldwide.”
The Digital Health Track will allow students to effectively solve complex healthcare challenges through the utilization of technology and applications. The Track will incorporate training in artificial intelligence, remote monitoring, ethics in use and application of technology, telemedicine and telehealth, population health analytics, social media in medicine, and nanotechnology. Students will also be required to complete two digital-related externships during their clinical years.
In an article from The DO Magazine titled “5 Trends Emerging in Telemedicine in 2020”, Dr. Stiegmann says she envisions younger physicians educated in digital health “[becoming] active participants in shaping the future integration of technology and medicine,” such as through the design of apps and other products based on their patient interactions.
Kameron Black, OMS III, co-founder of the Digital Health Club which was a precursor to the new Track, is excited to explore digital health’s potential to improve access to care for underserved populations. “[Digital health] has the ability to reach every sector of medicine and every person, regardless of socioeconomic status,” he says. Prior to joining the Track, SD Black participated in Stanford’s StartX accelerator program and assisted in the creation of a social fitness iOS application, thus sparking his passion for “creative innovation in medicine.”
The Digital Health Track welcomed eleven students at the Colorado location and eight students on the Southern Utah location on January 28th.