Episode 57 - population health and the future of blockchain in healthcare with marquesa finch

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Terri talks to Marquesa Finch about Marquesa’s journey into population health and the work that she is doing in blockchain to further better health for all.  Marquesa advocates for eliminating barriers to equity to increase innovation which is ultimately great for business. 


Who is Marquesa Finch? 

Marquesa is a Founding Partner at P2Health Ventures, a startup ecosystem and venture fund supporting entrepreneurs building public health tech solutions. She is the Blockchain Health Lead for the Silicon Valley Blockchain Society where she works on their blockchain health investments and initiatives, and is an active thought leader in leveraging blockchain technology to improve equity and access. Marquesa has worked on improving diversity and inclusion in tech through entrepreneurship at the Kapor Center for Social Impact and at the American Near East Refugee Aid (ANERA). She disseminated global health interventions in the Palestinian West Bank. Upon returning from the Middle East, she continued to work in digital health at Kaiser Permanente, building their first app analytics program. 


Marquesa studied Art History and Biology at the University of California, Santa Barbara and earned her Master’s in Public Health (MPH) in Global Health at The George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health in Washington, D.C.  She is a San Francisco native, a classical pianist, and ballerina. 


Show Highlights 

  • Marquesa walks us through her journey into population health through global health and what global health is. 

  • Marquesa was very interested in studying the effects of maternal and child health during a war and post conflict.  After grad school she worked in the Middle East.   

  • Marquesa and her team were trying to figure out why there was such a high incident of breast cancer in the West Bank.  They found there were political and cultural issues that needed to be addressed.   

  • To address the problem, they leveraged SMS to send messages to the target and educate the influential women.  This was Marquesa’s first introduction to digital health.   

  • Marquesa came back and worked for Kaiser on their technology solutions in their Mobility Centers of Excellence in 2012 and helped build out their mobile analytics platform.   

  • Terri and Marquesa talk about how Kaiser adopts and deploys digital health technology and some misconceptions about the lack of integration within Kaiser by region.  

  • Terri talks about the difficulty in implementing technology in a regulated industry.  

  • Marquesa explains what population health is and why it is fascinating to her and why she is focusing on it. 

  • Marquesa talks about the importance of focusing on digital health outside of the doctor’s office and hospitals.  

  • Marquesa explains what social determinants of health are and why it’s important to take them into consideration when focusing on population health and individual health.   

  • Terri and Marquesa talk about how these healthcare solutions and tools get paid for and funded. Marquesa’s VC fund, P2Health, is focused on just this. Marquesa talks about the misconceptions about assuming that government is responsible for paying for these solutions.  

  • Marquesa shares that what Omada Health is doing is rooted in population health concepts and is a VC backable company.   

  • Marquesa talks about her journey into blockchain and how the understanding of the foundational elements led to an ‘aha’ moment for her and the potential use cases in healthcare.   

  • Marquesa went into details around some of the potential blockchain applications in the healthcare space.   

  • Terri shared her experience three years ago when she was first introduced to blockchain and immediately saw the use case in drug traceability and medical device serialization and traceability.  It’s still early days and the blockchain isn’t mature enough for prime time.  

  • If Marquesa could wave a magic wand, she would change the barrier to equity.  We live in an inequitable world and this prevents us from moving forward as a society.  This would allow people to contribute optimally to society.  There’s a lot of talent in some communities that is not being tapped that could be very useful to others in the community and in the world.  Innovation is suffering as a result of the barriers to equity.  


Terri’s Key Takeaway 

Eliminating inequities will provide all of us with an opportunity live better lives.   


References in the Podcast 



Marquesa can be reached through LinkedIn via https://www.linkedin.com/in/marquesafinch/ 


You can follow Terri on Twitter at @terrihansonmead or go to her website at www.terrihansonmead.com or on Medium:  https://medium.com/@terrihansonmead.  

Feel free to email Terri at PilotingYourLife@gmail.com. 

To continue the conversation, go to Twitter at @PilotingLife and use hashtag #PilotingYourLife.