The Next Chapter–Microsoft and digital technologies in health and healthcare delivery


When I joined Microsoft in September of 2002 I never dreamed I’d be writing this blog post in January of 2016. Of course in 2002 HealthBlog didn’t exist. HealthBlog wasn’t born until October of 2005. Since then, I’ve posted more than 800 articles about digital tech in health and healthcare. 

I came to Microsoft after what had already been a pretty stimulating career. It all began at the tender age of 18 when I developed a television show for teens and young adults that was broadcast every summer throughout my college years. By the time I graduated college with thoughts of becoming a doctor I was managing six rock bands, producing outdoor concerts, and anchoring a weekend news program. I continued to work in the broadcasting industry for several years until I figured out it wasn’t much of a career plan for someone who valued control and security in life. My attention turned back to medicine and following medical school and residency, I landed a clinical role at a prestigious Seattle multi-specialty clinic.

KOMO News ABC Seattle where Dr. Crounse served as medical editor for 10 years

As a practicing physician my former broadcasting career soon came knocking again on my door. It started with appearances on our local ABC news station and quickly escalated into a half-time contract that had me appearing 5 evenings a week for more than a decade. Early in that decade I was also offered a gig with Lifetime Medical Television as the clinical anchor for medical programming that was broadcast around the world. I anchored Physician’s Journal Update for 8 years. Late in the decade I also did work for ABC News (The Health Show), the Discovery Channel, and Medical News Network. All the while I continued to practice medicine when I wasn’t flying somewhere to do a television show.

Cast and Crew of Physician's Journal Update, Lifetime Medical Television

During the mid-80’s to early 90’s I became enthralled with technology. I recall being one of the first persons in the television news room to write my reports on a computer rather than a typewriter. I also got involved in a few technology companies and ultimately landed a role as the Senior VP, CIO and CMIO for one of our local hospitals. While there, in the late 90’s, I co-founded a venture-backed company (Virtual Clinic Inc., doing business as Doctor Goodwell) that developed one of the first internet-based telemedicine solutions. Working in partnership with Microsoft we created software that allowed patients to schedule and hold virtual visits with their clinicians. But it didn’t take long for us to realize that the technology wasn’t yet mature enough, and the world wasn’t quite ready enough, for what we were doing. The reward for me, however, ended up being offered a full-time job with Microsoft to help guide the company’s early evolution in health and the healthcare industry.


So here I am almost 14 years later. The experience has truly been amazing. Being in a worldwide role since 2004, I’ve traveled the globe. I’ve met the most amazing leaders in medicine, technology, and government. I’ve enjoyed getting to know Microsoft customers and partners and doing keynotes at industry conferences and events in dozens of countries around the world. I’ve been able to participate in the development of new technologies and how they are applied to health and medicine from Kinect to Microsoft Band, HoloLens and more. I founded this HealthBlog and falling back on my television experience, developed the on-line video series Health Tech Today.

More than anything, I’ve had the opportunity to work with some of the best, smartest and most diverse people who have actively supported and nurtured my career at Microsoft. It is perhaps for that reason that I feel most ambivalent about the next chapter. But as in any good book, there must be a new chapter.

My team would tell you that I’ve been contemplating retirement for the past few years. I’ve changed my mind several times as I decided to stay just a bit longer to see the launch of a new platform, service, solution, device or other technology. But this year, for a number of reasons, I’ve firmly landed on a decision that it is time to let go–time to pass the baton on to the next generation of clinical leaders who can help guide this company’s growth and value in health and medicine. 

So it is with both a heavy heart and a great deal of enthusiasm and expectations about the future, that I announce my retirement from Microsoft and what has been a career that the teenaged-me, doing my little television show, would have never anticipated or believed possible.

Thanks to my loving wife and family for putting up with the world travel and crazy schedule all these years. Thanks to my team members for keeping us on the tracks. And, thanks to you for your loyal readership of HealthBlog over the years.

I fully expect our next clinical leader to pick up the reins and continue this company’s and our partners’ good work around the world to improve health and healthcare delivery. There’s still so much more to do.

You can stay in touch with me, Bill Crounse, MD, on LinkedIn. Happy New Year!


Bill Crounse, MD      Senior Director, Worldwide Health (retired)        Microsoft



Comments (36)

  1. Gareth says:

    I demand a recount! Who will I go to lunch with now? I will really miss you – you are such an integral part of this team.

    Best wishes for the future. I know we'll keep in touch


  2. Juliet says:

    Dr. Bill – you will be sorely missed at Microsoft!  Thank you for always being willing to lend your expertise to our teams whenever we had a question or needed some guidance.  Cheers to whatever adventures to future holds!

  3. Tim Collins says:

    Dr. Crounse

    You will be missed greatly.  I wish you all the luck in the world on your next thing.

    I will keep in touch.


  4. David Primrose says:

    Hey Bill, Congratulations on your retirement from Microsoft.  I have enjoyed our interactions and your assistance when our paths crossed.  I wish you the best and hope our paths can cross again in the future.  If you get down to SoCal please ping me, I would love to catch up over a coffee.  Best, DP

  5. Simon Kos says:

    Dr. Bill, you have been such a leader, not just for Microsoft Health but this industry. You will be sorely missed, but I wish you all the best in this well deserved next phase. You mentioned your life as a good book – perhaps we can look forward to your memoirs? Now that would be a good read!

  6. Ahmad Daher says:

    Dr. Crounse,

    Thank you for all the insights and well-written blog posts over the years. Been following you since the early days of HealthVault and hope you continue to blog in some fashion during retirement. Hell of a career, thanks for sharing with us.



  7. hlthblog says:

    Simon, Memoirs? Overall I think it would be rather dull reading. Perhaps on whatever comes next 🙂

    It has been a total pleasure to work with you. Thanks for your friendship and for being my travel guide on our many trips down under.


  8. Nick Tsilas says:

    Wow, what an incredible career!  Congrats Dr Bill on an extraordinary journey, and this milestone!  All the best on your new endeavors.  We will miss you.

  9. Neil Williams says:

    Hi Bill,   It was a great pleasue to be part of Microsoft and the old HSG team.  Very best of luck to you and hopefully Microsoft will comb the planet to find a worthy successor.  I'm looking forward to learning about your next adventure and trust that we'll see you giving a keynote again soon.   Kind Regards,   Neil

  10. Mark Stendal says:

    What an amazing career. So glad I had the chance to work with you (at two of the stops along the way). Knowing you–you're more likely to 're-fire,' than retire.  Here's to miles of smiles on your next chapter.

  11. Hemant Pathak says:


    It has been a real pleasure working with you over the years.  I especially enjoyed the occasion where we got to do the Doctor-Lawyer tag team presentation at the ABA Conference.  Thank you for your support, partnership, collaboration and inspiration. All the best to you!

  12. Rod Nirens says:

    Bill – congratulations on an amazing career.  Thanks for all your support.  We will miss having you around.  All the best in retirement.

  13. Heather Rosenberg says:

    Dr. Bill – A huge congratulations to you for this key milestone in your professional and personal life.  Please know how much I'll miss you and the key role you played for Microsoft during your time here.  You have been a great ambassador for Microsoft and our Health business and your absence will be felt.  I will also miss you personally and the great conversations we have shared over the years.  Thank you for all your contribution and please know how much you'll be missed!  

  14. Jamie Gier says:

    What a great career! You've made a huge contribution to healthcare. Feel proud! And enjoy retirement!

  15. Andrea McGonigle says:

    What to say about such an iconic figure. The impact you have had on Microsoft in Health and the health industry all up was nothing short of amazing. Dr. Bill has an uncanny ability to connect with his readers and customers on a level that many of us strive to achieve yet it came so natural to Dr. Bill. I have had the pleasure of doing many executive briefings with Dr. Bill over the years. He is a world class speaker and draws everyone in as he tells the story. If only I could bottle up just an ounce of that magic. Bill, congratulations on your retirement and thank you for your leadership and mentorship. Well Deserved!!

  16. Bill Hawkins says:

    Congratulations on your retirement Dr. Bill ! It has been a pleasure to work with you over the past 14 years. Thanks for being the trusted advisor to our customers and partners, and a great friend to all of us in the healthcare family. You will be greatly missed, but I look forward to seeing you when you are in Nashville…

    Blessings, Happiness, and Best wishes in your continued journey!

  17. Randy Fusco says:

    Dr. Bill!! Congratulations on your retirement from Microsoft. You were a true pleasure to work with during my time with the company and I enjoyed our many conversations about the use of technology in health. Hit'em far and straight and enjoy the waves whenever you can. What a great ride!

  18. Mani says:

    Dr. Crounse,

    Wish you a healthy and happy retired life, hope you will be able to achieve more going forward. Thanks for the many insights that you had shared so far.

  19. Jim Ptaszynski says:

    Dr. Bill,

    What a great job and a major impact you had in healthcare and technology!

    Microsoft, and it's customers were fortunate to have you!

    Enjoy retirement…let's have lunch.

    Dr. Jim

  20. Tanya Znamenskaya says:

    Dear Bill,

    I sincerely wish you many exciting moments in this new phase of your life. You were always a brilliant example of an outstanding professionalism and a strong personal integrity.

    It was a great privilege working with you. Those who had this luck, will never forget it. Thank you for that!

    Knowing you I am sure we will  hear your voice  somewhere again.

  21. Rasu Shrestha MD MBA says:

    Bill – what a ride you've had at Microsoft. Through all of your speaking, writing and thought-leadership work, the industry as a whole has benefited. Congratulations on what has been an illustrious career at Microsoft and all the best to you as you start penning your next chapter.

    Warmest wishes,


  22. Greg Davidson says:

    Bill, Thanks for all that you've done for Microsoft–and the healthcare community at large.  Best of luck in your next round of adventures.

  23. Anne Walker says:

    Congratulations on a great career! I will always be grateful for your mentorship and the opportunity to work with you on Health Tech Today.  I have no doubt that you will find new projects to pour yourself into and continue to have great impact on many lives.  Enjoy your next chapter!

  24. Mark Treleaven says:

    Bill, my very best wishes for your next chapter…. it was a pleasure to work with you but more importantly to get to know you personally.

    As always if the next chapter includes travel to the UK it would be wonderful to see you.

    Enjoy the moments..


  25. hlthblog says:

    Mark Treleaven,

    Thanks Mark. I will definitely miss my co-workers. I really enjoyed the times we spent together. I continue to follow you and he family on FaceBook. We shall stay in touch. Good luck in your career and wherever life takes you.


  26. hlthblog says:

    To all of you who have left comments,

    I am overwhelmed by the kind words. Although I am trying to reach out to most of you either here or on other social/digital channels, I may miss connecting with a few of you. So please forgive me if I do. I am deeply touched and so appreciate the well wishes. I hope we can stay in touch. Those of you who have my personal e-mail, please reach out anytime. Others may track me down via LinkedIn, Twitter (@MicrosoftMD) or Facebook. Thanks to all of you.


  27. Debbi Gillotti says:

    Bill – wishing you all the best!!!  You will be missed.  Thanks for everything you've done to support us at nVoq.  Enjoy your well-deserved retirement!

  28. hlthblog says:

    Jim Ptaszynski,

    Thank you, Jim. I'd send you a personal note but I seem to have displaced your e-mail address. I appreciate the well wishes. Hope you continue to enjoy your role at the Foundation.


  29. Steffen Achenbach says:


    what a ride – thanks for sharing. it was a great time working with you, thanks for your support and thanks for holding up the healthcare flag for MSFT! I will miss you Health-IT voice!

    For any successor, these are huge shoes to fill. Hope you will find time to travel to Europe from time to time!

    All the best,


  30. KMT312 says:

    Really never thought I'd see the day … but all good things must come to an end.

    Bill, I count you as one of the central contributors to my catching the 'bug.' That is, the passion to make health care better. My career has been inalterably changed by clinicians like you with whom I've had the pleasure to work and inspire me to bring whatever acumen I have to this great work.

    You deserve all the accolades and here's wishing you an enriching and enjoyable retirement.

  31. hlthblog says:


    Thanks for your comment. We need more people like you to challenge and change this industry. If I have played even a small role in inspiring others about the potential for digital health and healthcare to improve quality, lower costs, and improve access to care then I have done my job.


  32. Catharine L says:

    Dr. Bill – Thank you for being so wonderful to work with. Your kind spirit and demeanor will be missed on the Microsoft hallways for sure. I wish only goodness for you in your next adventure as you deserve it.

    All the best – Catharine

  33. Sanjay says:

    Dr. Bill,

    We will miss you. Thank you for your invaluable role in helping to shape the future of health technology. All the best for your new chapter!


  34. Suzy Foster says:

    Dr Bill, when I met you at the WW Health offsite last year it felt like I was meeting an old friend rather than someone new……reading your blog was just like you were right there talking, so I guess that's why! I am so sorry we didn't get to meet again face to face, but do pop by if you are ever in the UK. Wishing you much joy and happiness always. Suzy

  35. raj thiagarajan says:

    Dr. Bill, it was so great to see you today. A huge thanks for all your guidance every time I came to you. Let's stay in touch.  cheers, raj

  36. Josie Faycurry says:

    You will be missed Bill!  Thank you for all you did for Microsoft, our customer, the industry and those of us in the field.  Best wishes to you in this next chapter of your life.