New Web Site Allows Patients to Handle ‘Clerical Matters’ with Doctors Online
Although most doctors have concerns about offering patients medical information online, some have "struck a compromise" by allowing patients to "take care of clerical matters" through a new Web site, the Business Journal of Tampa Bay reports. The Web site, www.MDhub.com, allows patients to schedule or cancel appointments, ask for prescription renewals or request referrals -- tasks that account for 80% of telephone calls to doctors' offices. According to Dr. Jerry Spitz, founder of MDhub, the site reduces the number of telephone calls to doctors' offices and allows physician staff members to "spend more time" with patients in the office. In addition, he said that the site sends faxes to doctors without online access, meaning that doctors are not "force[d]" to "embrace the Internet." MDhub includes a list of about 370,000 doctors. "I know doctors don't use the Internet as part of their routine. I don't want them to change their routine," Spitz said, adding, "The last thing doctors want is to deal with their patient's medical problems over the Internet -- it's bad medicine" (Kossler, Business Journal of Tampa Bay, 9/21).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.