Stanford Medicine X conference to focus on creating positive change in health care

This year’s theme for the annual Medicine X symposium is the importance of individual citizens in helping to build a more caring culture in health care.

- By Tracie White

Lawrence Chu

Medicine X, Stanford University’s premier conference on emerging health care technology and patient-centered medicine, will return to campus Sept. 15-17.

This year’s conference, which will be held at the Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge, will focus on the responsibilities of health care citizenship and how individuals can take action to improve health care in the United States.

“Medicine X 2017 will focus on how we can take action to create the change that we want to see in the health care system and move beyond ideas into action,” said Lawrence Chu, MD, professor of anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine at Stanford and founder and director of Medicine X. “With the current uncertainty in the future of health care, it’s important to stop and consider how each of us might work to create a new culture of caring in health care that doesn’t exist right now.”

Medicine X aims to bring together everyone who plays a role in health care — researchers, patients, providers, designers, technologists and policy leaders — and encourage them to work together to build a framework for health care transformation, Chu said. This framework, known as “Everyone Included,” is a trademark of Stanford Medicine X and was co-developed with a diverse group of health care stakeholders over the past seven years at the conference.

“In January during President Obama’s farewell speech, he talked about how his future role was going to be as a citizen,” Chu said. “That inspired me to think about how we, as individuals, might consider this role in terms of health care. We hope this conference will give people both the inspiration and the tools and resources they need to take action and create change.”    

Keynote speakers include:

  • Amy Edmondson, PhD, professor of leadership and management at the Harvard Business School, who will speak on “The importance of creating psychological safety when a patient is a part of a health care team.”
  • Ai-jen Poo, a 2014 MacArthur “genius grant” recipient and executive director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, who will speak on “The new caring majority.”
  • Hooman Noorchashm, MD, PhD, a cardiothoracic surgeon and activist, who will share the story of his late wife, Amy Reed, MD, PhD, who was harmed during a medical procedure, and the journey they began to change U.S. medical practices.

Conference sessions will include: community organizing and how to create meaningful and lasting change in health care; the challenges of digital health; and a panel session moderated by ProPublica reporter Charles Ornstein on partnering to develop shared resources for cancer patients.

Events over the three-day conference will also feature presentations and panels on a range of topics, including:

  • Ideas and experiences from experts in the disability community on what access means to them and a discussion of exploring ways to encourage providers and institutions to go beyond compliance.
  • A discussion on the current state of clinical trials and how to move from serving only the needs of researchers to those of patients who participate.
  • A device demonstration providing hands-on experience with health care technologies presented by the innovators behind them.

Pre-conference events will take place Sept. 14 from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and will include a day-long summit to explore how technology and patient voices can guide the future of employer-based health benefits programs, and an IDEO design workshop in which ePatients can collaborate with designers, researchers, technologists and health care providers to spark new ideas for improving patient care.

Registration for Medicine X is available online. Pre-conference events require separate registration. 

About Stanford Medicine

Stanford Medicine is an integrated academic health system comprising the Stanford School of Medicine and adult and pediatric health care delivery systems. Together, they harness the full potential of biomedicine through collaborative research, education and clinical care for patients. For more information, please visit

2023 ISSUE 3

Exploring ways AI is applied to health care