Embracing AI to help doctors develop communities of care
Some years ago I had an experience that many people can identify with. I needed to see my primary care doctor for an issue I considered urgent but didn’t want to wait three to four weeks to get an appointment.
The way I see it — you can remain part of the problem or try to solve it. That’s how I came to found Imperium Legacy Technology and develop the iDirectDoc solution. iDirectDoc is an artificial intelligence (AI) mobile telemedicine solution that strengthens the connection between patient and doctor through direct primary care.
Direct primary care offers healthcare as a service in a membership model, similar to the relationship people have with their gyms or cell phone providers: for a fixed fee, the doctor will cover all of a patient’s wellness care. Offering an anywhere, anytime mobile connection from any device after just a few clicks, iDirectDoc serves as an umbilical cord between doctor and patient in a lifelong relationship.
Unlike telemedicine solutions that link patients to anonymous care providers, iDirectDoc helps manage the change from seeing “just any doctor” to seeing “your personal doctor.” The long-term relationship, rather than episodic treatment, encourages a focus on preventative medicine and overall wellness. And built-in IBM Watson analytical technology generates insights that help doctors deliver better care.
Providing healthcare, not health insurance
A key area of controversy today centers around health insurance. But health insurance is not health care. iDirectDoc focuses on healthcare, strengthening the relationship between patient and doctor regardless of who pays the bill. Not that our users don’t have insurance. Usually they have a catastrophic policy, so that if something bad happens, like a car accident or serious disease, the policy kicks in.
iDirectDoc is for the well and near-well patients who account for 80 percent of healthcare today. If we can increase the 80 percent to 85 percent and prevent any of the well and near-well from slipping into the 20 percent who account for most healthcare costs, everyone wins.
Applying AI for wellness care
How can AI mobile telemedicine help to accomplish this?
For the patient, our cloud-based solution offers the features needed to establish a private, secure and meaningful doctor-patient relationship, whether remote or in person. Included are case management, Watson Analytics, chat functionality, a built-in database, file and image sharing, a human body map and integration with electronic medical record (EMR) systems.
For doctors, iDirectDoc encourages a more engaging personal visit. Electronic visits are managed from any internet connection in a secure, fully documented environment, while also handling medication administration, scheduling and appointments and other routine tasks.
Physicians and patients can benefit from AI’s ability to glean insights from patient-generated data, medical research and more. Insights are delivered “just in time” to the point of care, whether during a personal or electronic visit. As an example, a patient on a camping trip could text an image of a rash or injury. Watson Visual Recognition can help physicians to pinpoint diagnosis and treatment without delay.
Freeing doctors for what matters
Most doctors spend more than half their time on administrative tasks such as coding, billing and insurance. If you add personal time, that leaves only 30 percent of time with patients. The direct primary care business model with iDirectDoc can reverse that by eliminating unnecessary administration.
This approach can help free doctors to spend more time on what really matters—practicing medicine anywhere, anytime and giving patients the healthcare they truly deserve.
Watch the following video to see Terry Cooper discuss direct primary healthcare: