February 19, 2016

Casey Bryson: The Man, The Myth, The Legend

Travis Good, MD

Co-founder & Chief Technology Officer

Passion. It’s one word that makes all the difference. It’s one quality that cannot be taught. And it’s one differentiator between where we are and where we can go. Passion is the epitome of what Casey Bryson embodies and it is with that passion that he joins the Datica family as our Chief Strategy Officer.

“Never apologize for what you feel. It’s like apologizing for being real.” — Lil Wayne

Lil Wayne may seem like an odd reference in the digital health industry but not to Mr. Casey Bryson. When asked for a quote that really resonated with him, Bryson regarded a few icons such as the influential rapper but also individuals such as President John F. Kennedy and Harry Truman. Having a hard time making the connection between former United States Presidents and a hip hop recording artist? Don’t worry because it took me a moment to make the relation as well. Drawing upon possible parallels, a belief can be found: a belief that an individual can make a major impact. Without a doubt, Casey Bryson is going to make an impact in healthcare. If you haven’t heard of him yet (which is doubtful), you should get familiar with him now.

Bryson is a homegrown, hard working realist that brings years of data integration strategy experience to Datica. Not only is he able to take data from multiple sources and make it actionable for health systems but through proper triggering and monitoring, he believes Datica can be the key to improving the state of the state. It is in this flawed state that Bryson has found passion in solving systematic limitations. Not only does he have a belief that the heatlhcare system is flawed, but he has lived through these flaws.

When his daughter was three days old, Bryson’s wife had swelling that indicated possible deep vein thrombosis (DVT) but the young family was turned away from the nearby vascular clinic and routed to the Emergency Room (ER) across town. It was in the ER that Bryson, wife and three-day old daughter sat in the lobby for hours on end watching other patients bypass lines with simple headaches and upset stomaches. But how could that be? It’s really quite sad, yet simple. While Bryson and his family answered the ER’s triage questions with candor, others were able to utilize key buzzwords and symptoms to sidestep the healthcare system to receive prompt treatment. Upon this realization, Bryson voiced his concerns about this prolonged wait, not to mention being accompanied by a starving infant, and was only met with hostility. It was after a grueling eight hour wait in medical offices that the Bryson family was finally able to return to the comfort of their home.

“Our story isn’t unique but it sticks with me as there has to be a better way to provide the right type of care to the right type of patients and we have to reward organizations that take the time to understand their patients’ needs; some of the patients that bypassed us in the wait line needed care but they needed a different type of care.”

Bryson is no stranger to the difficulties of navigating healthcare. At twenty-five years old, Bryson faced challenges that he holds near, dear and difficult. He was out of shape, overweight and had not seen a doctor for many years. With a job that required constant travel, there was no time to visit the physician for regular checkups. And even though he was paying insurance premiums for years, there was no benefit to Bryson since he was not sick. After spending the next five years self-educating himself on healthy eating habits, exercise, BMI management, and other wellness activites, he lost 40 pounds and felt like a completely revitalized man. But one looming thought remained: His healthcare system failed him. “Why didn’t my healthcare provider or employer want to keep me healthy? Why aren’t they incentivized to do so? Why did I have to do all of this on my own and why did I lack the resources to take care of myself in the first place?”

After reading the title of this post, you may have thought this was just another cliché write up, but if Casey Bryson is not legendary yet, he will be one day soon. We have welcomed him with warm, loving arms into the Datica family and look forward to the impact he not only will bring to our organization but to all of healthcare.