DocPanel hopes users will swipe right for second opinions

2018 03 07 18 39 9580 Las Vegas Sign 400

LAS VEGAS - A start-up firm making the rounds at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) meeting aims to create a marketplace for teleradiology services that will match academic radiologists directly with healthcare providers -- and even patients -- who need their image interpretation skills.

The existing teleradiology business model is based on companies that retain radiologists who read for them on either a full-time or part-time basis. The teleradiology firm then contracts with healthcare providers or radiology groups to provide its services, either for overnight reads or for full-service interpretation.

The problem with this model is that it gives the teleradiology firm most of the control. What if, instead, you created a model that cut out the middleman -- the teleradiology firm -- while giving radiologists more control over who they worked for, how much they were paid, and what types of studies they interpreted?

That's the model behind DocPanel Technologies. The company was founded by radiologist Dr. Philip Templeton, who is chief medical officer of the new firm, and Nirish Mathias, founder and CEO. They see DocPanel as an online marketplace that enables academic radiologists to be matched with the most appropriate customer for their services.

DocPanel has created a cloud-based application that allows academic radiologists to join and list their academic background, areas of subspecialization, types and number of cases they want to read, and hours of availability. DocPanel customers that need interpretations can then select the radiologist they want -- think of it as for teleradiology -- with radiologists getting paid by the case.

DocPanel is also marketing the platform to patients who want second opinions from a subspecialty radiologist for their initial scans. The website lists second opinions starting at $99, and patients can pick the radiologist. Results are delivered in one to three days, according to the website.

The firm went live in the middle of 2017, and more than 200 radiologists are now listed with the service. Ultimately, Templeton and Mathias hope to have 3,000 radiologists listed on the site, and they are attending HIMSS 2018 to reach out to business partners.

They see DocPanel as giving radiologists more control over the teleradiology process. They also see it as an opportunity for academic radiologists to level the playing field, so to speak, with private practice radiologists by giving them an opportunity to supplement their income.

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