Stanford Medicine magazine spotlights initiatives that add value to health care

The new issue of Stanford Medicine magazine highlights tools and wellness initiatives at Stanford that are aimed at adding value to health care and addressing the individual needs of patients.

- By Patricia Hannon

Eugene Celis can name many family members who died before the age of 60 from heart disease or complications from diabetes, and that worried him. But Humanwide, a yearlong pilot project at Stanford that integrated detailed health data about him with team-based care, helped Celis see his way toward a different future.

The project is emblematic of the initiatives explored in the latest issue of Stanford Medicine magazine, which features ways that Stanford Medicine’s focus on value is addressing the needs of patients and clinicians. 

In a letter introducing the issue, Lloyd Minor, MD, dean of the Stanford School of Medicine, writes that shifting the focus of health care to detect disease earlier, strengthen patient-provider relationships and deploy the latest health technology enhances value in medicine and demonstrates the power and promise of precision health.

“Personalized medicine means we can modify care down to an individual’s genome,” he writes. “And a better understanding of the social determinants of health — everything from our behavior to ourenvironment — means we have the opportunity and duty to treat each person individually.”

The stories in this issue touch on projects that are aimed at doing just that: 

  • In the Humanwide project, clinicians and patients worked together — using information from genetic screenings, at-home digital monitoring devices and detailed wellness assessments — to better prevent, predict and cure disease.
  • The Stanford Clinical Informatics Consult service harnesses a trove of health data from millions of anonymous patient records to provide the ultimate consult when a physician is stumped by a patient’s condition, symptoms or treatment options.
  • Initiatives to battle physician burnout at Stanford are aimed at increasing professional fulfillment for doctors by improving their work experiences and building efficiency to promote better teamwork and work-life integration. Also, Stanford Medicine's chief wellness officer, Tait Shanafelt, MD, discusses the issue in a podcast with Paul Costello.
  • A new emergency protocol at Stanford Hospital drastically cuts down on the time it takes to give stroke patients a lifesaving treatment that can mean the difference between walking and not walking, and between living alone and relying on caregivers.
  • When the director of a key outpatient clinic at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford set out to determine whether it was possible to increase patient capacity without compromising care, she turned to Stanford mathematicians for help.
  • Biobanks aren’t new, but a 2017 high-tech revamp of Stanford’s biobanking approach is bridging the gap between the latest biomedical research and patient care.
  • Delivering bad news to patients and their families is about the toughest part of a physician’s job, but a new virtual reality training program gives them tools that can help.

Also in this issue, read about how the vision of a mesa in a scientist’s dream changed the course of research into hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a deadly heart condition. And learn about how scientists see promise in a study showing that use of the hormone vasopressin helps children with autism improve their social skills.

Print copies of the magazine are being sent to subscribers. Others can request a copy at (650) 723-6911 or by sending an email to

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

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