Sneez is here
Speaker 2: 00:34 cold and flu season. That's always interesting and challenging at times. Uh, and um, we have maybe one of the, the best local experts to talk about that with us. Dr bill Satterwhite is our special guest today. Welcome Dr. Satterwhite. Thank you very much. Glad to be here. How are you doing sir? I'm doing great. It's beautiful. Fall day. Yes it is. So I'm, uh, I'm excited, uh, personally, uh, because uh, I actually, Dr. Satterwhite probably has more podcast experience than me. Um, so this might be like the most like professional, we could take this like on the tonight show. Dr. Satterwhite absolutely is calling me now. Okay. Well you better get that. Um, so we're going to be talking about, um, a really interesting, cool new development, uh, today, um, the sneeze app. And if you're like, what the heck is this needs app? Well, we'll get to that in a minute.
Speaker 2: 01:28 Um, before we do Dr. Satterwhite, I want you to just take a minute and tell us about yourself. Um, you know, what have you been up to? What do you like to do? How, why in the world did you get into medicine? And, um, you know, which, what questions, yeah, what you do kind of day in and day out. Yeah. So, so actually I'm, uh, I'm going to start with my birth. I was born at Baptist hospital in the 60s. Yes. When my dad was a resident or physician in training and I have virtually lived almost my whole life in North Carolina. Okay. And most of that in this area. Yeah. And so this is very much, you know, a place that I call home. I did not have the typical path to become a doctor. I actually took a slight detour, went to law school and practice law for awhile.
Speaker 2: 02:15 A little bit of a detour. Yup. 90 door. Um, don't send your children to me for career advice. I might steer them wrong man. No worries. And then I actually went to med school and that's what got me back here in Winston Salem a went to what was then called Bowman gray at the time now wake forest medical school and stayed on to do pediatric training. Then worked in the community as a pediatrician and ended up in this job as chief wellness officer at wake forest Baptist beginning in 2015. Gotcha. Well that is really cool. So as chief wellness officer, um, you know, a typical day and maybe that's uh, it's a hard question because I think your days are too typical, not too many of them, but what does a chief wellness officer kind of do? Yeah. On, on the average day. Yeah. Well, you know, it's a, it's a different kind of title.
Speaker 2: 03:09 Yeah. Um, there are only a few of us around and in many ways the way I think of it or explain it is part of my job is to recreate healthcare the way it ought to be. So if you think about what healthcare is now and has really turned into a system all about sickness and disease. So if you are a bad driver, someone may say, Hey, Justin is not very good and maybe we need to send him back to driver's ed. Yeah. We would say no. Once he crashes, we're happy to step in. And that is basically American healthcare. Lots of reasons it's set up like that and the stream flows in that direction. So part of my role is to say, huh, couldn't that be different? What if we actually thought about it differently, cared for people differently, emphasize different things? Can we recreate a model that actually is more what everyone wants, right?
Speaker 2: 03:58 I mean, none of us actually wants to be in a car crash. Yeah. The goal is to drive forever and never rag, right? Just as kind of my goal in life is just to live a healthy life. And never need medicine. And then, you know, die reading my favorite book when I'm really old. It's like, perfect, sign me up for that. Right. Let's do it. And so the question is how do we begin to think differently about health and wellness in a context where all of the energy is around sickness and disease. And so there are lots of ways that plays out sometimes with our own employees going from designing a programs oriented around wellness to actual care delivery that's going to be different, that helps people in a different kind of way. It makes it more convenient, faster, more efficient, less costly. And so we do a lot of that both internally and externally.
Speaker 2: 04:48 So we work with a lot of companies out there and then certainly things like we're getting ready to talk about sneeze app fit into the idea of what is it like to push ourselves out into, to the community and be a voice and a presence for actually staying well. Yeah. Like what does that look like? Yeah. Great segue. So, um, we're getting ready to, um, to, to wrap up the, uh, the second decade of the 21st century, hit into the third one. Um, and I guess, uh, a lot of people might say that technology has been a noticeable disrupter to many industries including healthcare and, um, really transformed healthcare, uh, of, of recent years and will continue to do so. Um, so, uh, one piece of technology is the smartphone and how that's revolutionized the way we communicate and socialize and gather information. Um, and, and with that becomes all these apps, you know, there's an app for that, there's an app for that, apparently everything.
Speaker 2: 05:51 And now we have a sneeze app. Yes. So what is the sneeze app? Yeah. The sneeze app really is the first of its cons, real time illness tracking app that actually pulls in reliable, accurate diagnostic data made by the local doctors and clinicians that are part of wake forest Baptist health in all of their outpatient clinics, physician offices, urgent cares, ERs and puts that into the app in an anonymous de-identified way by zip code so that people can actually see what is going around where and how prevalent things are. And we layer on top of that the ability for sneeze users to self-report symptoms that are consistent with that said, for example, take flu diagnoses every single night. The sneeze app gets information from wake forest Baptist health a day to download. Yes. That comes in and gets displayed on, we call it a heat map, but it's basically a map with different colors on it indicating you know, more cases, darker color, fewer cases, lighter color, uh, that would relate to something like flu.
Speaker 2: 07:03 And then people can self report symptoms that are bunched together that relate to the flu. So you could say with a click of a button that you have, you know, fever, headache, fatigue, that all relates to something like the flu and that drops an emoji on that same map. Okay. Interesting. So you know, in your mind, who, who is the sneezed app designed for? Who would take best advantage of it? Yeah, great question. I think, um, in a, in a big global way, it's actually designed for everybody that everyone on some level could, could benefit from it. There are, uh, some select groups of people that probably would benefit the most from it. And those are people that um, are at higher risk for getting sick or there's higher impact if they do. So for example, that would be newborns and premature babies that have now gone home or on the other end of the spectrum, senior adults for him getting sick can actually land them in the hospital.
Speaker 2: 08:06 Something fairly common that might not for, you know, a typical healthy middle aged person. And then the third group I think about a lot are people who are, for some reason immunosuppressed, maybe they're taking medicine that does that cause they have Crohn's disease or maybe they're undergoing cancer treatment because they have breast cancer. And so for them, they have a heightened need to know what things are like out in the world and environment and how much protection do they need. Sure. Yeah, that's great. Great points. Great information. So, you know, I'm just trying, I'm thinking to myself as you're talking about this, you know, one of my little kiddos, he had stripped third a couple of weeks ago, right. So, um, that would, uh, that would go into the system and then, um, pop up and my zip code. And then, um, you know, you hear kind of anecdotally or see on social media, Oh, my kids download strap or yeah, my kid has the flu.
Speaker 2: 09:00 But then with these heat maps, you can see the realtime data per zip code and see if, if anything is really yeah. How prevalent it is. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Right. And, and there's that. And then also we have trendlines. Okay. So, uh, for example, right now we have running a trend line that does relate to strap. Oh. And it's basically a graph of the whole year with the past two years graph lines on it and when it peaks and when it goes down and then a new line for this year [inaudible] creeping its way along, you know, the, the bottom there. And so it's very helpful to notice, wow, when do these things tend to spike? There's a lot of, um, predictive variability to a lot of infectious illnesses. That's interesting. So you would be able to look at that kind of thing and say, well, based on the heat map, based on the trend line, I think we need to take him in, you know, knowing my child, if it's in the air, he's gonna get it.
Speaker 2: 09:56 Yeah. And likewise, the opposite could be true. You could say, you know, it's nowhere in any zip code that we ever go to. There's just, you know, it's not happening. So maybe we don't need to go in right now. Sure. Let's pause and see what happens. Yup. So, you know, just thinking about, so there's a, you know, you have a mom, she's got three kids, one, one preschool, one elementary school, one middle school. Right? So you have different, different populations and different outbreak possibilities. Uh, so, you know, just, I guess thinking about that mom, how, how would it help her in her day to day life? Yeah, that's a great question. The, the, um, you know, the typical thing that happens for children is, uh, they almost never get sick in the morning and it's almost always in the evening or at night, right? Or sometimes they wake up, you know, at 6:00 AM sick.
Speaker 2: 10:42 But I mean, truly, it's stunning. And I've got four children and now grandchildren. So we've lived all that. And you're like, why did you get sick at 2:00 AM you know, what happened to 2:00 PM? Right, right. They don't do that when a doctor is still open and everything's there and it doesn't happen. And so, um, you know, let's pretend that person you shot one of those children and wakes up in the middle of the night and then that parent is immediately trying to sort through what do I need to do now? Right? Do I need to get off work? Where do I work? How easy is that? How hard is that? Do I need to, um, go straight to the doctor? How do I get an appointment? Is that going to work? And right now there's no context for people to really evaluate the probability that they need to act on that or not because there's no information out there other than what's on social media.
Speaker 2: 11:30 Or maybe they're in a texting group, maybe they're not, and they're sort of flying blind trying to figure that out. And so now people have a way to say, Hmm, is this worth doing that just from the sort of total picture hassle that we need to take that on? Or should I care for my child, you know, in a different way and we can work that out or let somebody else keep them, or whatever it is. So it now just provides an information context to make decisions. So think of it like the weather, right? I mean, I'm not a person who obsesses over the weather. I've lived in North Carolina forever. I could probably tell you more or less the high and the low for every month. But that's not always perfect. And I mean I do look at the weather, do I need an umbrella today?
Speaker 2: 12:13 Is it going to be cold? Right. And, and so that gives me something to work with even though I've lived here forever. And you think I would not need to like think what's the weather going to be in October? And yet I do cause there is variability that impacts my decision making. And I think the same is true here. Checking the app out, seeing sort of the illness weather out there. How do I react to that? How do I prepare, how do I respond? Well, um, so that's a good description about, you know, how it might help a mom and kind of what it is. Um, so what's the, how do I get it? W yeah, great question. So it's actually a free app, first of all available in Apple store and Google play. Okay. So you just download them in are a couple items like you do for all apps to sort of set your account so to speak.
Speaker 2: 13:02 Yep. And you are ready to roll. So then, and then once I set it up, well I think one of the features that's kinda cool, uh, if I'm not mistaken is um, it will send me push alerts as well if I UC, right? Yes. Right. Yeah. So if something's kind of popping off in my zip code, it'll, it'll let me know. Right. So we had the ability to send out push alerts on any topic that would be helpful for people to hear about. So that could be common things that are starting to peak, for instance, something like strep. Yes. It could be rare things like wow case, some mumps has been reported and while some of that, like mumps and measles and things that health department also takes on often though their ways of communicating aren't quite up to date in terms of the ease of getting that info.
Speaker 2: 13:48 Sure. And so the purpose is really to say how do we inform people so that they can, you know, live intelligently but also in a healthy way. Yeah. So, you know, I guess following up on on that, and I think what you brought up about the weather was a really good analogy. So, you know, dealing with real time information, you know, why would real time information be important and kind of be innovative. And I think you touched on it, you know, I think about, you know, with a tornado warning, you know, the advances they're making in weather detection and you know, getting out the warning earlier, right, right. It's, it's saving people's lives, right? So real time information is becoming more readily available and more critical. Right. So, you know, how, how does that translate to this Nissan? Yeah, yeah. Very much so. You know, it's almost like, um, I hope the invention of radar that could detect weather, right?
Speaker 2: 14:38 So again, I've lived in North Carolina forever. I wasn't alive in hurricane Hazel hit, but didn't like wiped out the coast cause no one knew it was coming. Yeah. I mean it killed a bunch of people. They had no idea. They didn't know it was there until it was there. Right. And that's in many ways how, um, we operate in the community as it relates to healthcare. People don't really know, you know, that flu is here until flu is here and that it's really spiking until it's kind of too late. And so in a way, my hope is that this kind of information just right in everyone's pocket or pocketbook can be a bit of a radar system that says, here's what's out there. Here's what's common. Here are ways that one could change life, alter behavior, wash hands, whatever the things are. Sure. They would keep the tornado or hurricane from wiping out your house.
Speaker 2: 15:24 Sure. And uh, you know, just following up on, on the realtime information, I think there's kind of, I was messing around with the app earlier, just playing around with it. So there's this kind of a, it's really, y'all made it really easy. There's a, you know, easy button that's probably trademark. But yeah, kind of like an easy button where if I need, you know, additional resources or, or some additional information, um, y'all put that at the people's fingertips as well. Right. So the idea is, um, that we would, that we have something here in this sneeze app that would inform people about both what's going around and it would also educate them on what's going on around. So there are a number of different videos that are very short, minute or so long. Okay. On this is the flu or this is strep or uh, you know, EQ and Asia.
Speaker 2: 16:11 And how helpful is that? So different aspects of things to help keep people informed and then options on what to do. Yes. If they don't really have a good option. Yeah. That's good. Good. That's very, I'm glad that y'all put that in there. Cause I was looking at it earlier, I was like, wow, this is really convenience. It's almost like they planned this, Hey, that's what we hope to have happen. Yeah. So it sounds really cool, you know, thinking about it. So it's just launching now, which is great. And, um, you know, we're letting people know about it and how it can be helpful. So thinking about what the goal of sneezes, you know, and then maybe that's, it might be a two part question for you. What's the immediate goal and then you know, a year or two, three years down the road, what do you, what do you see it becoming or being beneficial?
Speaker 2: 17:00 Yeah, great question. I think, I think my immediate goals since today is officially our public launch state is for a lot of people to download it. Yes. That's the first goal. The second goal I would say is for people to provide feedback on what would make it better and more useful for them. So on some level, we've launched this based on a number of different things that we think are helpful and valuable, but I know it's actually not everything. And, and so the question is what would be really even better? What would add to it more where you would say, wow, this is incredibly helpful now. And you know, examples people have given are things like, could there be a discussion board where people could talk about how long their own illness lasted? I mean, it's one thing to know vomiting is going around, but it is kind of important to know is this a one and done deal?
Speaker 2: 17:50 You know, am I better tomorrow or is this going to drag on for five days? Right? And so how do we build that in to that so that there could be more sort of granularity to that or other people have said, gosh, this is awesome. Could it send a sick note to the school where my kid is right? Saying this just becomes an easy, you know, pathway for that. So my, my second goal is for people to help send us information on how do we make this better and more useful. And I think my third goal is to, um, is to have enough participation from, uh, even other health systems beyond wake forest Baptist health to say, how do we know in a much bigger way almost what that weather is out there so that we can begin to act in a manner that actually helps people stay healthy.
Speaker 2: 18:40 Indeed. Yeah. So let's, uh, you know, back to your earlier analogy, let's, let's, let's keep the clean driving record and not, not getting any accidents anyway. And you know, I'll tell you that with, with, uh, the initial version which we did, which was a very small and much more about just parents and school aged kids and in the schools, you'd be amazed at how many schools get shut down in North Carolina every year because some illness is just wiping through there and they have so many kids out that they can't really continue to teach and they will shut it down for three days or whatever it is. Bring in the, you know, exterminator germ bomb squad to kill everything and wipe every surface down. Yeah. Which if you're in a 4,000 person, high school is a lot of surfaces and try to, you know, recover from that.
Speaker 2: 19:35 And I keep thinking my hunches that's avoidable. We could do better. Yeah. We could just do better there, you know. Well, this is, this is great and I'm, I'm, uh, selfishly, uh, you know, um, I'm happy that this is kind of starting here in, in our local area and that we can take advantage of at first, but like you said, hopefully lots and lots of people will, we'll see that it's available and downloaded it and find it useful. Um, so Dr. Satterwhite, you know, thanks for being here and joining us today. This has been fantastic. Thanks for all you do. And, and, uh, helping, you know, make our healthcare, uh, system and processes better. And, um, hopefully this will will help push, yeah. Push that hope. So it's, you know, we're kind of all on this journey together. That's right, actually. Yeah. So we're all in it together. Indeed. So, uh, just a reminder as we're closing out, this needs app is now available, um, in, in your, uh, mobile smart devices store, either Google play or iTunes and, um, if, yeah, if you have any questions, uh, about, um, wake health, uh, you can, you can visit our website at wake health at EDU as well and, um, search the resources on there. So doctor, it's been great
Speaker 1: 20:48 talking with you. Thanks Justin. I'm really appreciate it. Everyone listening out there and we'll catch you next time until then, be well become a sneezer. Thanks for listening to this episode of the best health podcast brought to you by wake forest Baptist health. For more wellness info, check out wakehealth.edu and follow us on social media, wake forest Baptist health, the gold standard of health care.