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Using Virtual Care To Restore Good Doctor-Patient Relationships

Using Virtual Care To Restore Good Doctor-Patient Relationships

Besides whatever ailed you, what was your pain point the last time you visited the doctor? Was it the stack of paperwork the receptionist handed you to fill out or was it the 45-minute wait to see the doctor? How about having to leave a message to have your prescription refilled and wondering if anyone took care of it?

The cure for those ills is One Medical’s innovative patient-centered, technology driven primary care system. One can only hope this business model becomes the rule rather than the exception.

One Medical founder and CEO Tom  Lee, an internist, is not your typical doctor.  In addition to his medical degree, Lee holds an MBA from Stanford. The ability to look at healthcare delivery from a customer-focused business perspective led Lee to decide early in his career to take bold action to modernize healthcare. He had a bold vision to make primary care more efficient, affordable, and profitable while at the same time, reinvigorating the doctor-patient relationship.

So rather than leaving the office management up to others, early in his career, in addition to doctoring, Lee rolled up his sleeves, practiced and analyzed every other aspect of the business. From this experience, Lee developed a medical care model that delivers “high-touch” services at two-thirds of the administrative costs of traditional care.

High-touch means 24/7 patient access to quality healthcare. One Medical’s technology-driven system provides patients with online access and a mobile app for scheduling appointments, update medical records, ask health-related questions, and access after-hours virtual care.

One Medical’s system provides patients with online access, a mobile app for scheduling appointments, and after-hours virtual care.

One Medical is a membership-based primary care company currently available in eight major US cities across the country (from New York City to Seattle). Members pay an annual fee of $150 to $200 to help pay for “above and beyond” customized services.  Started in 2007, One Medical is the business leader among personalized primary care models. These models are designed to provide concierge medical services at a lower price.  Unlike most concierge primary care providers, One Medical accepts most major health plans (including Medicare).

Both doctors and patients are hungry for what One Medical offers as demonstrated by the company’s rapid expansion from 29 offices in 2015 to 54 by the end of 2016.

This growth is happening because the One Medical system can boast the following accomplishments:  95% of appointments start on time. The system’s healthcare physicians are ranked in the top 10% on Yelp. The physicians see 35% to 50% fewer patients than the traditional doctor’s office (providing for longer, care-centered office visits). The One Medical model attracts first-class physicians interested in spending quality time with the patient, including via email and online after hours.

Why is One Medical One of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies of 2017? A bold leader with a bold vision took action; the result has been a painless delivery system that has reintroduced  “care”  to the healthcare industry.

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