Hipster M.D. and Hello Health

hellohealth.jpgHealth 2.0 physician Jay Parkinson, M.D. recently joined Myca, a Montreal-based company that aims to enhance access to consumer care while creating new efficiencies and revenue for doctors [1]. Prior to joining Myca, Parkinson’s Brooklyn medical practice combined house calls of the past with 21st-century technology. For a yearly fee of $500, Parkinson made an initial visit to his patients and offered two additional house calls as needed. Using IM, email and video chat, he would make himself available to his patients between the hours of 8 a.m and 5 p.m. weekdays for unlimited consultation. Parkinson used a web-based electronic medical record (EMR) system called Life Record to keep his medical records.

According to Parkinson, joining Myca didn’t compromise any of his ideals and was simply a natural progression of his practice [1]:

No innovation is going to come from within the industry. It’s going to come from outside the industry. There are 47 million uninsured who have to pay cash for healthcare, and there’s another likely 40 million that are going to need supplemental insurance. That’s a significant buying power that no one is even thinking about in the healthcare industry. I’m not anti-corporate. I’m just anti-stupidcorporate. I’m very much a businessman.

Links to articles describing Parkinson were included in a past edition of Medicine 2.0 here at Highlight HEALTH. Parkinson and his unique medical practice have been the focus of a great deal of discussion over the past year, both in the news and blogosphere.

Myca and Hello Health

Myca focuses on health and wellness applications, utilizing advanced communications and mobile devices to make it easy for consumers and health experts to connect. The company is expanding from the development of a mobile health application called MyFoodPhone Nutrition, which incorporates camera phone food journaling and video feedback services, to a broader platform for delivering healthcare services.

That broader platform is a healthcare service called Hello Health. A single communications and clinical information platform developed by Myca provides a solution to three top healthcare issues: access, high-quality medical care and cost management. The system offers patient and physician interfaces that extend far beyond a traditional EMR. For a monthly fee, members can access Hello Health doctors in the clinic or at home and by IM or video chat. Sound familiar? Following in Parkinson’s medical practice model, Hello Health incorporates several technological improvements only a company with resources like Myca could provide.

Interestingly, unlike many services that focus on physician quality and offer the ability to rate doctors, Hello Health will focus on patient satisfaction. According to Parkinson [1]:

It’s not going to be a rating system for doctors. It’s going to be private information based on your effort with your patients. To me, e-Bay is the model. They have one question they ask: ‘What is your satisfaction with the seller? Positive, negative, or neutral.’ It’s as simple as that. At the end of the month, you tally them up, and take the aggregate score, and the doctor will then make more or less depending on their average score.

If doctor scores decrease, Hello Health takes a larger portion of fees collected. This is the incentive that will drive a new model of practice, one that is more effective and takes advantage of technology. In an interview last month with the Wall Street Journal Health Blog, Parkinson described Hello Health as [2]:

… a neighborhood-based, Internet-enabled practice that sees you in person and communicates with you over the Internet. Patients become members for a Netflix-priced monthly fee and then pay fee for service. In-person visits, whether house call or in-office, will range from $75 to $150 cash. We will submit your claim to your insurance for you so you can be reimbursed but you pay cash up front.

As Alan Brookstone points out at CanadianEMR, complex diseases such as cancer likely won’t be as easy to manage using the Hello Health model of healthcare delivery. Nevertheless, for primary care, it streamlines service, provides accessible doctors, offers consumer convenience and may just be the next big thing in healthcare.

Hello Health should launch by the end of this month.

Additional details on Hello Health can be found on Jay Parkinson’s blog. More information on Hello Health Drs. Jay Parkinson and Sean Khozin can be found here.


  1. Jay Parkinson Sells Out? MDNG. 2008 May 12.
  2. Technodoc Jay Parkinson Says Hello to Franchising. Wall Street Journal Blog. 2008 Jun 9.

Medicine 2.0 #27 – Communication is Key

Welcome to the twenty-seventh edition of Medicine 2.0, the bi-weekly blog carnival of the best posts pertaining to web 2.0 and medicine.

Medicine 2.0 is the science of maintaining and/or restoring human health through the study, diagnosis and treatment of patients utilizing web 2.0 internet-based services, including web-based community sites, blogs, wikis, social bookmarking, folksonomies (tagging) and Really Simple Syndication (RSS), to collaborate, exchange information and share knowledge. Physicians, nurses, medical students and health researchers who consume web media can actively participate in the creation and distribution of content, helping to customize information and technology for their own purposes.

Communication amongst and between healthcare professionals and healthcare consumers is a necessary element to improve health and is critical for the delivery of optimal medical outcomes.

This edition of Medicine 2.0 covers a wide array of posts with one thing in common — Communication.

Web 2.0 Tools and Slideshows

Medicine 2.0

Gunther Eysenbach’s Random Research Rants

Dr. Gunther Eysenbach presents an archiving system for Citing Blogs, Preserving Cited Webpages etc with WebCite.

Clinical Cases and Images

Do you Twitter? Dr. Ves Dimov offers A Doctor’s Opinion: Why I Started Microblogging on Twitter.


23andMe presented a slideshow recently in Second Life in the latest session of the Scifoo Lives On series. Dr. Bertalan Mesko covers 23andMe in Second Life: LIVE.

Jay Parkinson+ MD + MPH

Dr. Jay Parkinson asks us to Look, posting a presentation from George Halvorson, CEO of Kaiser Permanente, about health reform.

Pharma 2.0

Bunny Ellerin writes about Within3 and the results of a survey at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) conference. There’s no doubt that social media is Changing Physician Behavior.

Online Video

Gene Sherpas: Personalized Medicine and You

Dr. Steve Murphy writes about the upcoming second Helix Health CliniCast on genetic testing, genomic medicine and the science of accurate warfarin dosing, asking How’s that for Genomic Medicine by Press Release?

Digital Pathology Blog

The Digital Pathology Blog reports that Mayo Launches YouTube Channel with videos highlighting the latest research and treatment advances at Mayo Clinic.

WSJ Health Blog

The Wall Street Journal Health Blog discusses online doctor consults, announcing that The Doctor Will See You on the Webcam Now.

Information Tools and Tests


Many of us might forget there’s other search tools out there besides Google. Laura Milligan provides a comprehensive list of 100 Useful Niche Search Engines You’ve Never Heard Of.


David Rothman posts An Evaluation of the Five Most Used Evidence Based Bedside Information Tools in Canadian Health Libraries, a recent study published in the journal Evidence Based Library and Information Practice.


Personalized Medical Search Engine: With Medgadget describes the inclusion of Medgadget in Scienceroll Search, a personalized medical search engine powered by Polymeta.com.


Jessica Merritt highlights a number of ways to use Google’s Personal Health Record (PHR), offering The Ultimate Guide to Google Health: 60+ Tips and Resources.

Canadian EMR

Digital records and privacy can be a mixed bag. Alan Brookstone reposts the media report UK Health Agency Loses 31,000 Patients Records.

Sharp Brains

Alvaro Fernandez writes about the Brain Age, Posit Science, and Brain Training Topics, reporting both good and bad news regarding the assessment and training of cognitive skills.

Microarray Blog

Albin Paul discusses the options for a Semantic Search Engine for PubMed — Microsoft Vs Yahoo Vs Google Vs Oracle in Semantic Web Search.


András Székely discusses TomographyBlogSearch in the Making, describing the SeekRadiology Project, a search engine for diagnostic imaging.

Doctor-patient Communication

Canadian Medicine

Graham Lanktree reviews a study of prepared patients and internet information, which finds that the Web Buoys Doctor-patient Communication.

Medical Economics

Gail Garfinkel Weiss writes how the shift from authority-based medicine to one of shared responsibility is playing out in the exam room in The New Doctor-patient Paradigm.

The iPhone

Dr Penna

Dr. Sreeram Penna provides a list of health care applications currently available for the iPhone in Mobile Medical Software for the Iphone 3g.

Efficient MD

Dr. Joshua Schwimmer also writes about potential applications on the iPhone for doctors in The New 3G iPhone, the App Store, and Doctors.


That concludes the 27th edition of Medicine 2.0. My thanks to everyone who submitted an article. You can find more information about the carnival as well as the hosting schedule and past editions at the Medicine 2.0 Website.

Have you written a blog post about web 2.0 and medicine? Submit it to the next edition of Medicine 2.0 using the carnival submission form.

FreeMD – Ask the Virtual Doctor

DSHI Systems is a physician-led medical technology company and a supplier of triage decision-support software solutions. Last week, the company announced the release of freeMD.com, an electronic doctor that performs an interview, analyzes symptoms and provides expert advice — all for free [1]. The website contains an expert system that emulates the triage function doctors perform when assessing the potential severity of a group of symptoms. FreeMD is able to analyze more than 3,000 symptoms and injuries in infants, children and adults.

freemdFreeMD.com combines text and a video doctor to ask questions about your symptoms and past medical history, and then generates a record in the form of a personal web page. The personal web page contains important information about your condition, your answers to the interview questions, and links to specific health information. Consumers can print out a copy or email the record to their doctor for review. It’s as easy as clicking “E-Mail” or “Print” in the toolbar at the top right of the page.

According to Dr. Stephen Schueler, M.D., CEO of DSHI Systems [1]:

Consumers are on their own when making the decision to see a doctor. Do they go to the emergency room, urgent care center, doctor’s office, or the nurse retail clinic? How does the average person know what to do? We have created a life-like experience that provides personalized recommendations.

FreeMD provides answers to important questions, such as: what might be causing my symptoms; do I need to see a doctor; how do I care for myself; where should I go for care? The website enables consumer-driven healthcare by empowering consumers and enabling them to avoid dangerous delays in care. The system also suggests where to go for care, reducing dependance on the emergency room.

FreeMD Breakthrough Technology

  • Uses video to conduct the interview (also uses text and photos)
  • Analyzes thousands of symptoms and injuries
  • Generates a personal web page that contains care instructions and a detailed health record

FreeMD Evidence-Based Medicine

  • 100% physician-written and maintained
  • Proven accuracy through millions of interactions
  • Reviewed by doctors and nurses for more than 10 years

For the last eight years, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) has used DSHI Systems’ Veterans Health Gateway, a sophisticated software system used by nurses to provide health advice via the telephone [2]. A similar system, 24/7 WebMed, has been used by University of Central Florida (UCF) students since 2004 to look up information on specific illnesses and allow the site to guide them through a series of questions about symptoms to determine the illness [3]. UCF now uses FreeMD, which replaces the older 24/7 WebMed system.

According to the website, freeMD doesn’t make a diagnosis, but instead determines your risk for one or more condition(s) that could explain your symptoms. Nevertheless, I tried freeMD a couple of times tonight while writing this article and was impressed with its recommendations. Give it a try and let me know your thoughts.


  1. DSHI Systems Debuts FreeMD the Web’s First Virtual Doctor. DSHI Systems Press Release. 2008 Apr 21.
  2. Veterans Health Gateway (VHG). Document Storage Systems, Inc. Services & Solutions. Accessed 2008 Apr 30.
  3. UCF Students Can Access Health Information, Advice on 24/7 WebMed Site. University of Central Florida News & Information. 2004 Nov 21.

The Doctor’s Channel – A Media Snack for Doctors

“Media snacking” is a term used to describe the consumption of small bits of information, data or entertainment. Social networks such as StumbleUpon, Facebook and del.icio.us, text and media sites such as Twitter and Pownce, Flickr … the list goes on and on. People that consume bite-sized media chunks, short web videos, RSS feeds and blogs are picking and choosing media that can be viewed quickly and easily. Today, it’s all about the packaging of information.

It’s all about being brief and succinct.

In today’s fast-paced, hectic world, everyone is busy, especially doctors. With patient visits, paperwork and meetings, doctors have little time to learn from each other and the healthcare community. The Doctor’s Channel, an internet TV site for doctors, is a time-saving tool that offers doctors an informative media snack, enabling them to learn about the latest news, ideas and information quickly.

The Doctors ChannelThe site offers 1 — 2 minute streaming videos offering rich, concise content delivered by doctors, as well as opinions and editorials. Doctors can film and post short videos pertaining to anything they think would be of interest to their peers, such as therapy approaches, surgical procedures, new drugs, etc. Further, users can register on the site and, like other social networks, join groups related to their interests. The site covers a total of 42 therapeutic specialties.

The Doctor’s Channel President David Best, MD, MBA, said [1]:

We started The Doctor’s Channel because it’s apparent that the traditional system of medical education isn’t working as well as it could. Watching a talking head for 15 minutes on a computer screen is a crushing bore. The world is media snacking, getting their information in short bursts from cell phones, podcasts and RSS feeds. We decided that the physician, who really does have precious few minutes a day, is the perfect audience for short, succinct educational streaming videos. Our goal is to provide an engaging, interesting way for doctors to learn that quickly gets to the point.

The Doctor’s Channel is just one of several websites that offer reputable video content that can be viewed by health consumers. Additional websites include:

  • icyou, a healthcare video community with hundreds health-oriented videos from certified medical and health professionals (as well as regular people)
  • Empowered Doctor, a health and medical news website that offers the latest news with short video stories.

These are excellent alternatives to using YouTube as a source of health misinformation.

Do you know of other reputable medical video content websites? Let me know!

Additional health and medical video resources are listed in the Highlight HEALTH Web Directory.


  1. The Doctor’s Channel Launches First Medical Site with Short Streaming Videos That Allow Doctors to Learn From Each Other and the Healthcare Community. PR Newswire. 2007 Aug 22.

Medicine 2.0 #10 – Medicine and the Second Generation of Internet-based Services

Medicine 2.0Welcome to the tenth edition of Medicine 2.0, the bi-weekly blog carnival of the best posts pertaining to web 2.0 and medicine.

Medicine: derived from the Latin ars medicina, meaning the art of healing.
Web 2.0: the second-generation of web-based communities and hosted services that strive to facilitate collaboration and sharing between users.

Medicine 2.0 = Medicine + Web 2.0

For the uninitiated, lets begin with a general definition of the term Medicine 2.0 and the difference between it and Health 2.0.

Medicine 2.0 is the science of maintaining and/or restoring human health through the study, diagnosis and treatment of patients utilizing web 2.0 internet-based services, including web-based community sites, blogs, wikis, social bookmarking, folksonomies (tagging) and Really Simple Syndication (RSS), to collaborate, exchange information and share knowledge. Physicians, nurses, medical students and health researchers who consume web media can actively participate in the creation and distribution of content, helping to customize information and technology for their own purposes.
Health 2.0, a new concept of healthcare, also utilizes web 2.0 internet-based services but is focused on healthcare value (meaning outcome/price). Patients, physicians, providers and payers use competition at the medical condition level over the full cycle of care as a catalyst for improving safety, efficiency and quality of healthcare delivery.

The goal of both of these movements is the delivery of optimal medical outcomes though individualized care.

Medicine 2.0, Informatics and Personal Health Records


Why should doctors use web 2.0 in their practice? Dr. Bertalan Mesko, founder of Medicine 2.0, writes an Open Letter to the Physicians of the World, explaining how the new generation of web services will change the way medicine is practiced and healthcare is delivered.

Tech Medicine – Healthline

Dr. Joshua Schwimmer provides an excellent example of a physician using the communication tools of the web, describing A Mobile Medical Practice — Dr. Jay Parkinson.

Medical 2.0

Dr. Uri Ginzburg also writes about Dr. Parkinson and suggests other applications that would make his medical service more accessible to his patients in The New Age of the Outpatients Clinics.UPDATE: October 20th, 2007 Dr. Parkinson’s blog can be found here.

Gene Sherpas: Personalized Medicine and You

Dr. Steven Murphy, aka the Gene Sherpa, discusses his new personalized medical practice, writing About Helix Health. As most medical informatics systems are outmoded, he and his partners have developed their own electronic medical record (EMR) system.

Release Zero Blog

Peter Murray believes that heath informaticians need to address the issues of personalized health/medicine, online identity, new forms of online interaction and hyperlocality as he discusses Web Trends and Personalising Health/Medicine.

Constructive Medicine 2.0

Earlier this month, we witnessed the first of many online health management services as Microsoft launched a free, ad-supported online health portal and personal health information database. Dr. Rahul Shetty writes about the Microsoft Health Vault and his Perspectives on Personal Health Record.

Project HealthDesign

Lygeia Ricciardi also writes about the Microsoft health portal, giving us More on HealthVault: Profiling the Platform.

Kidney Notes

Google is working on their own personal healthcare site. Dr. Joshua Schwimmer presents A Stanford Medical IT Specialist Interviewed by Robert Scoble, a video conversation with a medical IT specialist who’s working with Google.


The future of patient records may be the use of 3D representations of the human body. Dr. Bertalan Meskó reviews Visualization Software of IBM for the Future of Medicine: Interview!.

Doctor’s Gadgets

Life Record has developed an emergency medical record (EMR) application that’s compatible with a web-enabled iPhone. Dr. Chris Paton covers a YouTube video demonstrating the Life Record EMR on the iPhone.

Web 2.0 Tools: Blogs, Video and More


As Healia searches PubMed/Medline, David Rothman reviews some of its notable features. An excellent alternative to the native PubMed interface.


Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. Deepak Singh questions why their search is limited to peer-reviewed publications and is Proposing a “Plus Box” for Google Scholar.

Medical 2.0

Video sharing is one of many web 2.0 tools that can be used with medicine. Dr. Uri Ginzburg presents LabAction.com, a niche video sharing tool for scientists and researchers.

GooMedic Blog

Hamza Mousa shares his own list of medical student resources, reviewing a series of Neurological Examination Videos.

Healthcare Vox

Fard Johnmar announces the launch of a bi-weekly program to chronical how the Internet, computers and other technologies are impacting health globally. Introducing … The Digital Health Revolution.

Flags and Lollipops

Connotea provides free online reference management for researchers, clinicians and scientists and recently, there have been some issues with the service. Stew discusses Connotea and Postgenomic Complaints.


The blog is perhaps the fundamental web 2.0 tool and many of the posts mentioned here are written by physicians. Now it appears that blogs can be cited in biomedical literature. MedGadget describes the Citation Rules for Blogs from the National Library of Medicine.

Brain Blogger

Although many physician bloggers disclose their identities, others blog anonymously. Dr. J C writes about Anonymous Physician Bloggers and his reasons for anonymity.

Nursing Online Education Database

With so many blogs out there, which one do you choose? NOEDb.org provides a comprehensive list of the Top 100 Health and Wellness Blogs and Top 25 Nursing Blogs (By the Numbers).

Shelved in the W’s

Mark Rabnett presents his own select list of English-language med student blogs. 19% of online teens blog and as they grow up they are now Blogging Med School.

Envisioning 2.0

A number of websites are available today to rate physicians. Fard Johnmar writes about Physician Rating: New Study Brings Debate to a Boil.

MedSqod: Podcasting for Medical Professionals

Have you ever wanted to make a quality medical podcast? Dr. Peter Beck writes From The Podcast and New Media Expo. Find out more about MedSqod.

Health 2.0

Health Care Law Blog

Bob Coffield blogs live from the Health 2.0: User-Generated Healthcare Conference 2007.


Jan Martens also writes an excellent review of the recent Health 2.0 conference in SFO [an overview]. I thought the Scribe Media film that opened the conference, A Brief History of Medicine, was awesome.

Shelved in the W’s

Mark Rabnett had other thoughts about the Scribe Media video. Above all the noise and commotion of the video, he’s Scratching an Itch.

Scott Shreeve, MD

Scott Shreeve evaluates the Athena Health Internet-based business services model and maintains there is a real business model in creating value through the aggregation, analytics and advising services they provide. He takes a serious look at the Health 2.0 Business Model: “Payment Dependent on Results”.


In short video clip from the Health 2.0 conference, Bob Coffield talks about business models and what will attract people to utilize new web-based services.

Social Health Networking

The Health Wisdom Blog

Unity Stoaks discusses the challenge physicians face when prescribing their patients a trusted and unbiased online resource. New Pew Study Shows Patients Turn to Internet for Health Information; Now Can We Get Docs to Do The Same?.

Little Blue Pill

Asif Shah reposts Healthcare and Web 2.0, an article from Modern Healthcare, about healthcare startups using the models of social networking sites.


MedGadget reports that physician-only networks are easy to penetrate and outlines a series of questions they believe need to be addressed by Sermo and other physician social networks, announcing that it’s Confirmed: Sermo is Not for Physicians Only; New Important Questions Raised.

Medical Science, Biotech and Healthcare


There’s only one place where laypeople can go to learn about medical science and its implications for their lives, investments and political interests. Alvaro provides 10 Highlights from the 2007 Aspen Health Forum.


University teaching used to be limited to chalkboards, slides and overhead projectors. Anonymous Coward discusses innovation toady when Teaching Science with Web 2.0.

Clinical Cases and Images

Dr. Ves Dimov touches briefly on the new biochech company 23andMe and asks if You Can Carry Your Genome Information on an iPhone?.

Nursing Online Education Database

The 2008 U.S. Presidential elections are fast approaching and there are a number healthcare issues. Do you know where all the candidates stand on all the issues? NOEDb.org breaks it down for us with a Comparison: Presidential Candidates on Major Healthcare Issues.

Evolution … not just a theory anymore

Web 2.0 is not just a technological phenomenon but also a cultural one. Greg Laden explores an otherwise typical survey of political attitudes of groups of academics, believing that Health Scientists Need a Slap Upside the Head.

Tech Medicine – Healthline

Dr. Joshua Schwimmer writes about iGuard: A New Drug Safety Website, one of the first web-based services that allows you to get free personalized safety alerts and updates about your medications.


That’s a wrap for Medicine 2.0 #10. It’s been a pleasure to host this edition and I’d like to thank everyone that contributed articles. Be sure to take a moment and let your fellow bloggers know this issue of Medicine 2.0 is available so that everyone’s hard work can be appreciated and enjoyed by all.

Have you written a blog article about web 2.0 and medicine? Submit it to the next edition of Medicine 2.0 using the carnival submission form. The next edition of Medicine 2.0 will be hosted at The Health Wisdom Blog on Sunday, October 28th, 2007.