There are a whole bunch of top 10, top 50, and top 100 lists going around right now. It’s always interesting to browse through these lists. If you’re on the list, you love seeing your name or organization’s name in lights. When someone makes a list, you can almost always disagree with something on their list, which drives a good conversation.
As I was thinking about all these lists, I saw one that listed the 100 most influential people in healthcare. As I looked through the list, I didn’t really agree with the list. I knew where they were coming from, but everyone on their list was on a macro level. While those people have influence over the healthcare system as a whole, I think there are much bigger influences over the healthcare we receive.
Here’s my list of the top 5 most influential people in healthcare:
- The Patient
- The Parent of a Child
- The Caregiver for a Senior
- The Spouse of the Patient
- The Patient Advocate
That’s right. The patient and the people who care about and advocate for that patient are the most influential and powerful people when it comes to the healthcare you receive. There is literally nothing more powerful in healthcare than this.
This applies to patients getting care from the existing healthcare system, but also applies to the broader terms of health and wellness. Nothing is more powerful than a patient that cares about their health and wellness. The only thing that comes close is a loved one who cares about that patient. It’s a powerful force and one that we haven’t leveraged enough in healthcare.
Sure. The big names in healthcare that make huge sums of money in high profile roles have an impact on the overall state of healthcare. However, even they aren’t stronger than an empowered patient.