Is the Doctor In?

I think there’s a real opportunity for innovation in the field of health care, particularly for senior citizens.

Since my mom is 87, she has plenty of health-related issues. Some are worth taking her to the doctor. But not every issue warrants a visit. To me, it would make sense if I could send an email to her doctor, ask a question, and get advice or a response. It seems, however, that physicians have not been quick to embrace technology as a way to better serve their patients. And I wonder why not.

It’s only been recently that I’ve seen my primary care physician with a personalized tablet that has all my medical history on it. But for the most part, my doctors still use folders and paper. That can’t be easier to track.

In moving my mom here, we asked for her medical records to be sent by her primary care physician and the specialists she had been seeing. Guess what? They were faxed … Hundreds of pages of paper. Isn’t there a way to transfer them electronically?

It’s about time doctors and hospitals and insurers start thinking about better ways to bring medical care to the public. In fact, it could very well save time, money and resources.

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4 responses to “Is the Doctor In?

  1. I think open source will lead the way in the health care revolution. It kills me that I have to fill out the same forms over and over and over again with pen and paper. We could start by improving efficiency in the administration to start savings on costs.

    This is a good read: http://opensource.com/life/10/1/can-open-source-save-us-health-care

  2. Well, I think it would be wonderful if that could be embraced. There’s the “Google Health” product, but of course, it’s not exactly awesome or embraced.

    But I’m sure the reason that doctors can’t or won’t just email patients back is because visits directly correlate to money collected. Emails don’t. If you can’t bill it, why spend hours a day doing it?

    There are web services out there where real doctors will answer your questions. I used it once when it was late and night and both my hands were swelling up. I paid like $5 or something, and got some good advice. Of course, I suppose it could’ve been just some Joe on the other end, so it would be nice if you could get your own doctor, that you know.

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