Iain Buchan

Informatics for Health needs Informatics of Place

Professor Buchan will argue that health(care) systems cannot be optimised independently of the civic systems in which they operate. He will show the need for informatics to enable fuller understanding of the links between health and place, in discovery science, in experimental medicine and in managing health systems. In particular, the challenges and opportunities of combining frequent, patient/citizen-derived information with infrequent clinical observations – tapping into the rhythms of disease/life for better care. He will use practical examples from chronic disease management in the UK to show how ‘natural’ health systems covering 2-7m population, with deeply integrated health data, and interoperable analytics, might borrow strength from each other for better predictive modelling and surveillance. He will challenge the over-simple notion of precision medicine with a future scenario whereby a patient’s ‘health avatar’ might ‘refuse’ to integrate with a care provider’s care pathway.