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Real time wait management monitoring and tracking analytics for doctors

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Would a real-time wait management and monitoring system be something useful for doctors? The ability to see whose in the waiting room at any point, as well as keep track of analytics, etc

I'm trying to build tools to solve real pain points that doctors have. Any feedback would be appreciated!

Category: Family Physician-GP

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Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian is online now

Expert:  Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian replied 4 Days.


Thank you for asking this interesting question at DoctorSpring.
Please allow me to be brutally honest.

I do not think a real time wait management and monitoring system is something which Doctors find useful and will adopt naturally. However hospital and hospital chains might find it useful. I will explain why. Let number down my thoughts for clarity.

1. The pain point which you trying to solve is not really a pain point for most of the Doctors out there. Sure long lines and wait times irritate everyone, but it will be difficult to convince the Doctor that software could actually help in managing it. They might just go for more magazines and candies in the waiting room. Analytics won’t make much sense. The Doctor can easily make out the pattern of patients who are going to present to him every day after some months of practice. (Please note I am not saying there is no value to the product you are referring to, but it is likely the Doctors will ‘see’ a value to the product )

2. Practice Management softwares and Appointment scheduling softwares are already helping Doctors to manage the schedules of the patients and thereby indirectly helping them to manage wait time. More and more Doctors now use ZocDoc and similar services do help in managing the wait list. From Doctor Discovery to appointments they provide end to end solutions. They even provide some analytical data too. Patients who book the appointment fill out a short questionnaire most of the time. So I see your product idea can go well in sync with a Practice Management suite. You should give it a thought.

3. Friction and Utility concept. Any product or service aimed at Doctors should have near zero friction (means no disruption of their normal work flow) and of high immediate utility value to them. This is common to all domain, but particularly important is B2D or Business to Doctors. Remember the utility you are providing should have some solid ‘immediate and foreseeable’ benefit for the Doctors. And the solution should be just plug_and_play. I am afraid your current proposal might not been seen as high utility or a necessity by Doctors.

The service might make more sense in a hospital with a big and busy waitlist. But again marketing and selling a new product to legacy systems like hospitals is a herculean challenge. And more over this kind of service is better implemented

I understand my reply is not really a positive one. (But what’s the point of a buttered one ?) Anyway this is just my opinion and I can be wrong.
I do have some experience in Startups and Business consulting.
There is one method I usually recommend to assess the market response before building your product. Make a good power point presentation and few mock-up screens of the proposed application. (No coding). Fix a price. Get in touch with few Doctors office and try to sell the product. In 10 minutes you can assess their interest and get some valuable feedback.
Doctor’s office is a hot area of interest for startup people. It is interesting, challenging and bit crowded too. So start wisely!

Hope this helps.
Please feel free to ask followup queries.
Thank you.

Patient replied :

Hi Dr. Sebastian, thank you so much for your detailed valuable feedback. This is exactly the reason why I'm trying to validate the concept before acting on it. I'm just curious though, what would be some pain points that doctors have which I could build solutions for? I'm trying to to think of something that's "plug and play" as you mentioned. Btw, how did doctorspring.com reach out to you? It must have been a huge task getting doctors aboard this site. I'm just curious how they got their traction. Thanks so much again for your feedback. I do appreciate you taking the time to reply!


Expert:  Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian replied 3 Days.

Well, I built DoctorSpring! (Co-founded actually). That’s the reason why I chose to answer this consult. Getting quality Doctors on-board was a big task. But we offer pay per consultation, global exposure and online profiling for Doctors. User base is growing, and we are happy that people are coming back.

Regarding Doctor’s pain points – There are many. There many players who try to solve the pain points in Healthcare IT, Doctor Office management, appointments etc. I feel this is a very crowded space. Sure there are opportunities, but for the time being lot of noise.
I would suggest you have a look in the opportunities in disease management. A lot of disruptive ideas can have value in individual disease management, ( eg. Asthamapolis, Mango health, DirectDermatology) or in Medical education (eg. AgileMD or Agile Diagnosis). We have some very important projects coming up in medical education space. (Won’t be able to divulge more details) Domain expertise is very important. So I would recommend you to work closely with Doctors or medical students and gain expertise. This is a list of Health care startups by Rock Health - http://www.imedicalapps.com/2011/11/rock-health-index-digital-health-startups/

Might give you ideas / inspiration.

Hope this helps

Dr. Deepu Sebin Sebastian
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MD, Internal Medicine - Stanley Medical School
Medical School - MBBS - Govt. Medical College, Kottyaam

Diagnostic Prediction - Stanford School of Medicine
Received Specialty training in Critical Care, Cardiology, Neurology, Gastroenterology, Nephrology from Stanley Medical College and in Endocrinology, Rheumatology.

Hematology and Geriatrics from Madras Medical College.
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