2015 will be a huge year for Telehealth/Telemedicine. In the past, as physicians we have always allowed others implement the systems they want us to use and look were it has taken us.
Some might be happy others not so much. Regardless of your emotion we need to choose wisely when we choose the Telemedicine platforms we will be using.
As doctors, it is time we come together and make a wise decision on the platforms we will use in the future. The average debt for a resident at this point in time goes from 170 to 250K dollars. I see many platforms asking for these people in debt to give more for free. Why for free? Well it is simple but not the point of this post. I will elaborate in a later post on this.
For this post I want to emphasize some key points to avoid Doctors getting screwed one more time…
1) Telemedicine platforms are not here to “help” you as a doctor. Their main goal for them is to make money. If this was not the case then they would not be a business. It is estimated that Telemedicine in 2020 will reach an estimated value of USD 36.3 billion and business men want a piece of it. They all have to say they are here to improve healthcare. Blah blah blah. Let’s detach ourselves and see who is running the companies.
2) ALWAYS check the percentage they will take from the transaction and see if its fare. Probably not. If not Doctors need to stick together…
3) The Telemedicine platform is as good as the doctors enrolled. DO NOT ONLY CHOOSE ONE, ENROLL AS MANY AS YOU CAN. DO NOT GIVE THE POWER JUST TO ONE! Whichever platform benefits the patients and the doctors at a given time will be the choice.
4) Physicians are the only professionals that give their advice for free. Yes, we like to help people but we also like to help our families and provide for them. This comes from money. Try creating an application that asks lawyers to give their advice for free and see how hot it goes.
5) Let’s be blunt here. TIME IS MONEY and nobody works for free (almost nobody). Hey I am up for Pro Bono, but getting lured into a system of telemedicine where everyone wants to make money of the doctor. Not so much.
6) The truth is, if we want Telemedicine to be a pleasant useful tool for us as physicians we need to have a strong PRESENCE in how we practice it. THEREFORE, CHOOSE WISELY. If such platform does not exist, lets just start tweaking Skype, or hangouts, to avoid transaction fees. Microsoft, Google are you listening?
7) WHY IS FOCUSING ON THE PHYSICIAN IMPORTANT??????? Simple, because we all want a happy doctor to take care of us. If they use a platform that they are happy with this is far more likely. Look at all the negative articles out there talking about how frustrated doctors are with how healthcare is going. This is true because we are not truly represented. Doctors know what is best for the patients, trust me, and that is why many complain. Example Doctored: The Disillusionment of an American Physician
In general, what is good for the doctor is good for the patient and what is good for the patient is good for the doctor this is because these 2 entities are a team, a partenership (Unless your doctor is a “dbag” then this does not apply and vice versa). We need to stick together to make a change, its time we start doing it.
Over the last 18 months I have been working on a platform called Curely with 2 other entrepreneurs from Singularity University. This platform has been created by doctors and patients working together. We have tweaked it constantly and have been incorporating our physician’s recommendations. This is a platform that truly focuses on the PATIENT but it ALSO focuses on the DOCTORS. The best interest for both parties. If you are interested on Curely, you can find me at firstname.lastname@example.org and/or christian.assad @ singularityu. com
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