Recently Re-Elected West Hollywood City Council Member John Duran to Host SXSW 2017 Panel on Health Innovations Driven by the LGBT Community

Share Article

John Duran and three LGBT entrepreneurs will reflect on what the broader healthcare sector can learn from LGBT early adopters of digital health

Proofpilot ( announced today that John Duran, re-elected on Wednesday, March 8th to another term as City Council Member of West Hollywood (, will be moderating the interactive panel discussion “LGBT Community Driving Digital Health Innovations” at South by Southwest on Friday, March 10 from 3:30 pm to 4:30 pm at the Austin Convention Center, Room 9C.

Jasper Schmidt, Medical Director at Pager (, Scout, Founder of Lincoln Woods Consulting (, and Matthew Amsden, CEO of ProofPilot (, will also be joining the conversation as panelists.

"When I first started in HIV prevention research, the general population wasn't using technology like the LGBT community," said Matthew Amsden, CEO of ProofPilot. "All those years gave us an opportunity to experiment and make mistakes. Now that everyone else is online, we've got all that experience to draw from while everyone else is trying to make sense of digital health.”

The LGBT community has been among the earliest adopters of digital health technology. From introducing new modalities for STI testing and treatment to HIV prevention research and education, LGBT digital health innovators have leveraged technology to solve the problems that exist within its community.

This panel will explore how the characteristics of the LGBT community can be a beacon for trends, mistakes and lessons in digital health for the wider population.

  • What can the general health care community learn and apply from the LGBT community?
  • What can the LGBT community contribute to broader health care reform?
  • What are the next issues the LGBT community is tackling with technology?

"The focus of the conversation won’t be political. The topic here is what can leaders from any community, tech comfort level and political perspective learn from what’s been going on in the LGBT community for almost two decades," said John Duran, who has been on the West Hollywood City Council since 2001.

"And it's not just HIV. Many of the lessons are directly transferrable to issues affecting other communities," says Amsden. "The LGBT community has high rates of substance abuse and mental health issues," he says. "These issues are environmental and behavioral. They are issues we also see at high levels within the general population. There are a lot of lessons from the LGBT community within lifestyle diseases like diabetes, obesity and heart disease."

"Because many from the LGBT community are early tech adopters, the LGBT space has been great for learning about how to target a specific need and integrating that service into the larger picture," says Jasper Schmidt, Medical Director at Pager, an app that works with large health systems to deliver care directly to patients. It follows the evolution of Pager, which is to start with a specific health service, in the LGBT community that might be STD testing, acute urgent health needs, or PrEP management. “We use that as a gateway for engagement to provide the full spectrum of needs for the individual and population from diabetes and cholesterol screening to lead ins for specialty care or behavioral health."

From more information please visit:

About ProofPilot (
ProofPilot makes the same scientifically valid research techniques previously only be available to big pharma and well funded academia - available to anyone. And, it turns participation in those studies into an entertainment activity. With the secure online platform, design, launch manage studies that determine what works to improve the human condition. Participate in those studies contribute to important knowledge, learn about themselves and earn valuable rewards. Current and previous studies include those by Columbia University’s Lyme and Tick Borne Research Center, University of Kentucky, Planned Parenthood, and Totah Behavioral Health among others. ProofPilot raised $1.8 million in 2014 from CueBall Capital, Brooklyn Bridge Ventures and Esther Dyson.

About Pager (
Pager is a mobile-first, patient-facing technology that is changing how people connect with and navigate healthcare. Headquartered in New York City, Pager helps deliver personal health care on-demand. Pager was founded by a group of experienced entrepreneurs: Oscar Salazar, Uber Co-Founder; Gaspard de Dreuzy; and Philip Eytan, and Jasper Schmidt as president of the medical corporation.

About West Hollywood (
Founded in 1984, West Hollywood has become one of the most admired and respected cities in the country. West Hollywood is passionate and creative in its approach to City government and has established itself as a leader in many of the critical social movements over the last twenty years. The City has led the way in the fight against HIV and AIDS; LGBT rights; human rights and civil rights; women’s rights; and Seniors. It’s 36,000 residents includes members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community; Seniors; Russian-speaking immigrants and an emerging Latino population.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Chi Zhao
Hokku PR
+1 6465785254
Email >