December 2, 2008

Physician’s Reference Tool Idea

After reading the book "Wikinomics", I've been on a big kick thinking about the future possibilities for mass collaboration. Here's my idea for a medical device. I'd love your thoughts. This tool, designed to help physicians and healthcare professionals better diagnosis their patients, is a portable tablet that practitioners can use whether they’re seeing a patient in their office, at the patient’s home, or in an emergency situation. As one evaluates their patient, they mark the symptoms, vitals and relevant medical history on the tablet within a universalized analysis chart. When they submit the evaluation notes through a satellite connection, it travels to a wiki database of other physician analyses’ and conclusions, omitting patient names for privacy purposes, and through statistical correlations, offers the physician a list of possible and probable outcomes. Let’s say a physical therapist completes an evaluation, and the database confirms the therapist’s original diagnosis that these are common symptoms for one who has recently undergone shoulder surgery. The therapist is then directed to the treatment section of the user-created database, where a host of peer-submitted exercise and treatment plans are available for use. These treatments can include in-depth medical illustration charts, audio advice, and video tutorials that can be shown to the patient immediately, as well as e-mailed directly to the patient for reference if being assigned take-home exercises. These treatment plans can also be rated by the community, so that the highest quality and most informative diagnosis treatments will be featured. This collaborative reference tool will help apply group-think to each and every patient, making sure that the physician makes their diagnosis with the best possible information. This tool will prevent misdiagnoses, and most importantly, will serve as a great research tool that will help practitioner’s to better understand the possible treatment options for their patients.