Colleagues In Care (CIC) is a purpose-driven volunteer organization dedicated to alleviating suffering and building capacity to improve healthcare services in destitute places like Haiti, a country ravaged by an earthquake in 2010 and plagued by ongoing natural disasters, demolished infrastructure, limited resources, devastating diseases and high mortality.
As the Chief Collaboration and Learning Officer using IBM’s SmartCloud for Social Business platform to transform healthcare delivery in Haiti over the last two years, it is clear to me that emerging cloud technologies are changing the way we work and have the potential to drive innovative transformational solutions to complex social issues.
In our experience as a start-up with a new business model, we continue to face the inertia of traditional legacy systems and ways of working, but we know that these new social business and collaboration technologies are game changers. We realize that we must build in the practices for network learning, trust, sharing, dialoguing, capturing knowledge, coordinating and co-creating. Social business is about shifting to the source of work—people — so we can humanize systems to leverage more expertise, diversity and collective intelligence.
Using IBM SmartCloud Engage cloud collaboration tools, we have been able to reach beyond traditional boundaries to quickly engage medical professionals across the globe. We can tap into the expertise and knowledge of doctors and nurses we never would have had access to before. CIC’s Global Health Collaboration Network connects the best medical minds and institutions to share information and to work together to create quality, evidence-based standards of care adapted for the realities confronting Haiti and other regions challenged by poverty and resource limitations.
Taking advantage of the socially-enabled online editing application, IBM SmartCloud Docs, we are embedding new ways of working, moving beyond meetings and networking to co-creating, generating and delivering results—real CollaborHaitian! SmartCloud Docs enables colleagues to upload diverse multi-lingual sources of reference and educational content and mold the raw materials of internationally recognized disease management principles to co-develop pragmatic Haitian programs. Communities of practice collaboratively edit materials to create “Best Possible Practice” models of care, certification programs and ongoing professional development curricula.
Having these tools available to our colleagues no matter where they are in the world, not only saves time and reduces the inefficiencies of “recreating the wheel,” but the end products we create together are incredibly valuable to the global medical community. Best Possible Practice models and curricula are replicable, scalable and adaptable to other low resource regions in the US and abroad.
One example of how we are using social online document editing to impact healthcare in Haiti is for an initiative aimed at addressing the most pressing maternal illnesses impacting mortality among Haitian women. The Emergency Medical Obstetrics (EMO) team, led by Lisbet Hanson, M.D. and Letitia Acquah, M.D., is currently using IBM’s SmartCloud Engage and SmartCloud Docs to design the first-of-its-kind certification program. EMO training will address how a physician, a nurse or an auxiliary could stabilize and keep a patient from dying at locations where drugs and resources are unavailable. With SmartCloud Docs, an international team is able to collect, collate, edit and co-create appropriate materials making up the EMO certification program and curriculum. We can upload various western medical protocols, Haitian protocols, multi-lingual and multi-formatted course materials.
And by collecting this critical medical information in one place in the cloud, inviting people to participate in communities to hash out solutions, and collaborating online in real time to develop best possible practices for care, we are becoming a real social business in the cloud. And for us, the result goes beyond increased productivity and cost savings. Ultimately, CIC strives to be a social learning organization, developing analysis and collaborative learning tools and systems that capitalize on purpose, participation and performance. We are modeling how to optimize the use of cloud-based social business technologies to facilitate communication, collaboration, coordination and execution of the best possible models of care derived from the broadest collective knowledge available to serve countries lacking resources. We are saving lives and making a real difference on the ground in Haiti.
Learn more about Colleagues in Care in this video: