Matthew Holt Interviews PlushCare Founder Ryan McQuaid


Ryan McQuaid, former Head of Product for AT&T mHealth and friend of Health 2.0, joined Matthew Holt to discuss the launch of his brand new startup PlushCare. And when we say brand new, we mean as of writing this post, their Indiegogo campaign is a mere 23 hours old. PlushCare combines elements of telehealth and concierge medicine to provide basic health care via phone, email, and video chat for $10 per month. Busy working professionals can use the service to connect with Stanford MDs for same-day diagnosis and treatment of illnesses or injuries. The physicians provide advice, prescribe medicine, and will refer directly to primary care providers and specialists if necessary.

PlushCare removes the hassle of scheduling an in-person doctor visit, and provides the same care at lower costs. In addition, for each individual that purchases PlushCare, the company provides one child a lifetime of immunity to measles. PlushCare is currently accepting a limited number of members via their Indiegogo campaign to validate demand and user test. Several other companies are using a similar model of tech-enabled services, including American Well and Teladoc, but the space is sure to see more activity at the prospect of pushing basic care out of the doctor’s office in a way that is convenient for consumers and increases provider efficiency.

2 replies »

  1. Watch for anti-kickbacks as they refer Medicaid and Medicare beneficiaries to specialists unnecessary (clinically-not-indicated) procedures and hosiptailzation.

    There is a parallel undisclosed network for marketting (not noticeable to general public) where they make the money from.

    Attorney General and Inspector General would take the notice soon. Sit tight and wait.

  2. I noticed that their website brags that you can get a referral to a specialist with just an email message.

    That is dumb, and it will drive up healthcare costs. It might be cheaper to pay $10 for an email referral rather than $30 copay for an office visit with your PCP, but when you get an unnecessary referral to a specialist (which is FAR MORE LIKELY via email than an office visit), then you arent talking about just $10, you are talking about a $500 bill to the specialist and all kinds of testing that may or may not need to be done.

    Healthcare looks cheap when you compare $10 vs $30 copay, not so cheap when you compare $30 copay vs multi hundred dollar subspecialist bill and workup.

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