Doctors can diagnose with MRI, cut brains open with lasers, and manipulate molecules and genetics. Ironically, the best tool a doctor has to guide his clinical decisions is a 60 year old model that remains the unchallenged gold standard for evaluating clinical efficacy: The double blind placebo controlled clinical trial. This model is antiquated, linear and anti-social.
Hackers have Stack Overflow, Github or Quora to quickly discover the best way to do something. Hungry people have Yelp to find out where to eat. Consumers read reviews on Amazon to decide which camera to buy. Social makes life better because we learn from each other’s experiences. Why is medicine so opposed?
Doctors are innovators. They are scientists. They should determine their own therapeutics and they should learn from each other. Just like hackers and just like Yelpers, they should collaborate and inform each other of their experiences.
I use Epocrates daily to to look up a drug or a dosage, but how do I know which drug on the list my colleagues prefer, and why? And what resource do I use to evaluate the myriad integrative therapies my patients try on their own?
Care Practice is the most successful private practice in the country, launched entirely through social media, with innovative doctors working in rooms next to each other. Can you guess the best tool we have to quickly discover something new? We email our doctor friends and ask for opinions, which tend to vary, and seldom overlap.
Healthcare needs a new model for evaluating clinical efficacy based on aggregated clinical expertise over a social network.
Care Practice hacked an alpha version of an app designed like Epocrates that functions like Yelp, where doctors author treatments for specific conditions and other doctors agree/disagree with those therapeutics. The results have amazed us. In just a week, it grew out of Care Practice to 50 doctors who added more than 300 new treatments. It’s very simple, very powerful and built in a format that makes sense to a clinical practice.
We call it Share Practice.
I’m so excited to finally have a tool that lets doctors all over the world collaborate on therapeutics. I believe Share Practice will evolve the future model for evaluating clinical efficacy. Will doctors use it to discover new integrative therapies? Will patients use it to challenge medical dogma? Would you like to search a diagnosis and see what 10,000 doctors agree is the best treatment? I think everyone would.