Doctor Disruption

Hypochondriacs Rejoice: WebMD is Beefing Up Its Real-Life Doctor Support

She learned how to do that on Wikipedia. (Photo: Getty)

Imagine if your next false diagnosis of bone cancer or gout came from a real doctor instead of an automated database. This idea could be thrilling if you’re a sane person who happens to dislike going to the doctor–not so much if you’re an obsessive online symptom checker.

Either way, WebMD is getting closer to making it a reality. With their purchase of the health startup Avado, they’ll be beefing up their doctor-patient interactions–and possibly giving the Internet’s biggest hypochondriacs actual, not imagined, heart attacks. Read More

Welcome to New Fit City

Hey WebMD Addicts: What if You Could Email a Picture of Your Symptoms to a Doc?

jayparkinson-headshot

Last August, Betabeat profiled Jay Parkinson, the¬†Williamsburg doctor who first won over New York techies in the late aughts by reinventing annoying doctors visits.¬†The hipster doc hacked together his own system–trading insurance premiums and wait times for a Google Calendar, Skype, and PayPal. He eventually formalized the system under a startup called Hello, Health until he parted ways with the company in 2009.

Now, Mr. Parkison is back at it with a similar venture called Sherpaa, a concierge health service he was just developing when we spoke. Sherpaa works with directly with employers to give company staffers¬†24/7 phone and email access to Sherpaa’s physicians, which the startup refers to as “guides.” (Get it??) Read More