This episode is your gateway into the world of transformative possibilities.

Innovation a necessity in today’s rapidly evolving world – not a buzzword. But there’s not always an app for that. This is magnified in medicine and healthcare, where technology, costs and clamor for convenience fueling change. In “Unveiling the Future: Tech, Trust, and Healthcare Transformation in Nashville,” three forward-thinking guests talk about their work at the heart of the dynamic intersection of consumer expectations, cost challenges, and scalability.

The episode opens with Laura Beth Brown, RN, MSN, Senior Vice President for Vanderbilt Health Services, recalling how she started to think about whether traditional healthcare delivery could take a page from logistics giants like UPS. The delivery models she oversees emphasize the importance of meeting patients where they are – even bringing inpatient hospital care to their home. This shift towards convenience and accessibility reflects how retail consumer trends bring services and goods to the front porch.

“I think innovation happens over time. I think we convince ourselves because of social media and access to information with news 24/7. I think we convince ourselves that innovation happens really quickly,” says Brown.

The episode’s guests work in different areas of VUMC, yet their vision and passion share a common thread: the transformative potential of innovation to improve lives. From integrating nurse practitioners into delivery services to embracing value-based care models and nurturing entrepreneurial ecosystems, hear from people who are on the ground testing out pilots and evolving ideas to meet the changing needs and expectations of patients.

CJ Stimson, MD, JD, Senior Vice President for Value Transformation and Chief Medical Officer of VUMC’s employee health plan, is developing payment models that place value on the outcome of care rather than paying for individual acts of care. He’s got years of successful pilots that prove the concept works, but scale and translating the model across other health systems is the next milestone.

“We have to first understand the problem that’s happening at the level at which we’re trying to solve it. So I have to understand what are the challenges that are facing our patients? Where are their struggles? What are the challenges facing their employers, taking care of them as they’re the largest payer of their healthcare,” says Stimson.

Scale and commercialization are vital, but academic and medical research has long been ring-fenced from the private investment needed to reach commercial potential. This challenge – and opportunity – is on the mind of Ken Holroyd, MD, MBA, lead of the Brock Family Center for Applied Innovation, Vice President for Technology Transfer at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and medical director of Vanderbilt University’s Center for Technology Transfer and Commercialization.

Holroyd talks about the role of the recently funded Brock Family Center in helping faculty translate their inventions into products with commercial potential to make a tangible impact on people’s lives. Holroyd highlights the need for specialized talent and strong relationships to bridge the research-commercialization divide.

“We hope to have a more direct impact within the Nashville community through our startup activity, which promotes job formation, economic development… to work closely with and complement what our private business sector is doing here in Nashville. We’re happy to talk to people across the country that are interested in helping us out with being people involved with our startup companies; that are interested in providing money for our startup companies. We’ve traditionally done that but this just gives us some additional resource to make those relationships and connections,” says Holroyd.


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More About Our Contributors

Laura Beth Brown

Laura Beth Brown, RN, MSN, is the Senior Vice President of Vanderbilt Health Services.

Kenneth J. Holroyd, M.D., portrait

Kenneth J. Holroyd, M.D.

Kenneth J. Holroyd, M.D., MBA, is Vice President for Technology Transfer at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Dr. CJ Stimson

Cary (CJ) Stimson MD, JD is an Assistant Professor in Vanderbilt University Medical Center's Department of Urology and is the Senior Vice President for Value Transformation and Chief Medical Officer of VUMC’s employee health plan.