The EMR is not the solution. Software which puts the healthcare process onto the internet for doctors and their patients is the solution.
This is the first of a series of blogs that I hope to be able to publish weekly on how the growth of internet healthcare provides Doctors with a tremendous opportunity to play a much more central role in the healthcare reform process. All prior healthcare reform efforts to date have failed to contain global healthcare costs because they have not directly involved physicians in defining the solution. I am convinced that the internet revolution in healthcare can change this and this concept supersedes the current push for getting EMR (electronic medical records) into doctor’s offices. I say: the EMR is not the solution. Software which puts the healthcare process onto the internet for doctors and their patients is the solution.
Internet transformation of the healthcare system has begun - the fuse has been lit, climb aboard.
No transformation will match that which is occurring healthcare. This “paradigm shift” is providing doctors with a unique opportunity to take a leadership role in healthcare reform for the sake of our patients and our profession. Furthermore, we can actually increase time for patient care and our personal lives at the same time. The only prerequisite is the ability to use a web browser and the desire to connect with our colleagues and patients using internet tools designed to support online collaboration and multi-practice integration.
Doctor - meet Patient. Patient - meet Doctor.
The simple fact is that the internet has become a “place” to do healthcare. A place as real as a doctor’s office and soon, the far more common venue. Brick and Mortar healthcare will be challenged in the same way that internet challenged travel agencies and book stores. It’s happening now. Healthcare is increasingly outpatient and now increasingly online.
The internet changes all of the variables. For example, the Music Industry is reeling from legitimate online music distribution systems, such as iTunes. Why pay for the whole album when iTunes lets you purchase the few songs you like for a third the cost or less. Applied to healthcare from a patient point of view, internet healthcare means healthcare when you need it, when you want it and the way you want it. For web doctors it means improved efficiency, flexibility, enhanced income and quality of care.
With remote monitoring, video conferencing, three-dimensional imaging, remote presence, and telemedicine technology, a surgeon in Texas can now perform surgery on a patient in orbit. Don’t be fooled into thinking that conventional “ways of doing medicine” will hold back the future. They will not. And the time to move forward is now because if doctors don’t lead this brigade, they will most certainly become soldiers within it.
Every established system in the healthcare industry is about to change. The “so-called” doctor shortage will instantly become the “doctor oversupply.” Medical errors will become “business process errors” prevented forever more by “business process improvements.” Insurance companies will become actuarial algorithms. Physicians will become web docs. Patients will remain Patients. On the internet, they will meet, solve problems, improve quality of life and age gracefully well beyond a hundred years.
The Healthcare Internet revolution will have implications well beyond the healthcare industry. If doctors lead this charge, our revolution will positively affect the entire world - and not through medical tourism. I want to be on the cutting edge of this movement - and so should you.