Dan Kogan is a veteran IT developer who built some matching systems now prevalent in financial institutions. He’s now turned his attention to healthcare and has started Health World Web. I (Matthew that is) have been advising him as he gets going, and have therefore (as I allways want good material) bullied him into writing about his view of why health care is ripe for this technology and a little about what his company plans to do. (Don’t forget that the same offer is open to anyone who wants to write on the Health 2.0 Blog)
When exactly did the power of healthcare move out of the hands of the people and into the hands of the doctors? Historically, patients do not take the upper hand when it comes to choosing the proper healthcare. Choosing the right doctor becomes a nerve wrecking game of cross referencing the insurance listings with yellow pages, the general listings of a Google search inquiry with proprietary knowledge or word of mouth. Finding a good doctor often reminds a patient of a game of dice. The chances of rolling two 6’s are equal to 1/36 or about 3%. What comes into the equation is the patient’s insurance, the insurance a doctor will accept, the potential path to the specialist through the gatekeeper (if one is required), locale and then, just pure randomness in getting to one of the more than 700K licensed MDs.
With the rise of the Internet, at least the last part can be solved,
or helped by the army of newly created sites whose only purpose and
claim to fame is to put patients’ minds at ease, help them make the
right choice, and have at least the minimum of assurance when it comes
to the choice of a doctor, treatment or medical advice.
A very powerful “human” engine that is making waves at the beginning
of the 21st century is called the Social Network. It has started with
the arrival of LinkedIn, MySpace, Friendster and Facebook. Simple
social communication made a leap into the multiple vertical domains of
human knowledge. The trend of health related vertical social networks
picked up over the last year.
The premise behind this so called Health 2.0 movement is simple.
Patients are merely tired of not knowing the whos, whys, hows and what
fors associated with the care they are receiving from their doctors.
Patients have accepted diagnosis and treatment at face value for too
long. The office process for healthcare has remained the same since the
inception of organized healthcare. But what exactly does Health 2.0
offer to a patient? And what part do doctors play in this movement?
Read the rest on the Health 2.0 Blog