Michael SeresESCP’s annual conference is not just about surgeons passing on knowledge to each other. It is an opportunity for all high-profile coloproctological speakers to come together and share experiences. One non-surgical speaker who will address attendees in Nice this September is the high-profile and influential colorectal e-patient, bowel transplant recipient, stoma device innovator and global patient advocate, Michael Seres.

Michael has been a colorectal patient for 35 years. He was diagnosed with the incurable bowel condition Crohn’s disease at 12 years old, he has had his first colorectal surgery at 14 and has had approximately 25 surgical procedures since. Michael is also a 2-time cancer patient.

In 2011, Michael became the 11th person to undergo a bowel transplant in the UK. He started blogging about his journey through bowel transplantation. His blog has over 95,000 followers, and he uses social media to develop global on line peer to peer communities covering more than 20,000 patients. He devises social media strategies around patient engagement. Over the last few years, he has built up a social media following through his blog and encourages peer to peer communities to discuss and improve patient engagement.

In 2012, Michael founded 11Health, a sensor solutions company for patients of a long-term chronic disease who are attached to medical bags. The business provides wireless and bluetooth-enabled devices to secure real-time data and connect to mobile devices. Michael explains:

“Put simply, we are trying to help patients live a better quality of life,”The business has offices in London and California.

Michael has spoken at countless events. One in particular in 2016 is particularly memorable:

“I was the co-chair of a ‘precision medicine initiative’ for President Obama at the White House. It’s definitely one of the highlights in my life so far. It was a fantastic experience to discuss and emerging technology in healthcare.”

Michael hopes to use his ESCP platform in Nice to drive home the message of how important it is for surgeons to engage with, and listen to, patients:

“The theme of my presentation in Nice, is about how patients’ experiences are massively underutilised in the healthcare profession. I want to pose a question to the audience: are clinicians brave enough to engage with patients?

Many of the audience will be leaders in colorectal surgery but, for some, there is no doubt a further step can be taken to work more effectively with patients to deliver better outcomes.”

Michael thinks the time is never better than now to utilise patient insights. He says:

“We’re at the advent of digital age. Patients have access to information more than at any time in history. Couple that with the financial pressures on healthcare just now and it is a no-brainer. We need to move to outcomes-based health.

At a time when data access and sharing is at the forefront of modern consumer technology, whether it is smartwatches, apps or Fitbits, it points to the perfect time to explore these technological capabilities for the benefit of patients. Patients today are the perfect audience for developing deeper engagement, providing them with extra responsibility and ownership of their own health.”

Michael hopes that attendees in Nice will find this talk informative and thinks there is something for everyone to take away. So how will his presentation in Nice benefit attending surgeons? He says that for the surgeon-patient relationship to improve and impact outcomes, three aspects are key:

“There needs to be mutual empathy, mutual respect and, finally, mutual trust. All three are needed for true engagement. Those surgeons that truly engage with patients will deliver the best outcomes. The more you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it.”

Follow Michael Seres on Twitter: @mjseres

Book your place at the 13th Scientific and Annual meeting of ESCP in Nice here

Michael Seres: E-Patients and Colorectal Surgery innovation - 17:00, Wednesday 26 September 2018

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