Uber had been growing for several years before it swept into view, knocking the taxi business towards its demise.
Venture capitalists, who funded Uber to replace taxis, are investing billions of dollars in services designed to “disrupt” existing healthcare, including psychiatry. Many of these services have roots in marketing rather than healthcare, and are flashy, unapologetic, and growing fast. And so far, state medical boards are allowing it. The most radical ones (and some of the most flush with funding) have only a token charge for token input from a doctor: essentially, they are selling prescription medication as if it is over the counter. See for yourself.
When considering a job in psychiatry, with recruiters writing every day, it is hard to comprehend that traditional jobs may be about to be displaced by services most people haven’t heard of yet. But that is how the biggest changes often happen – first we dismiss the possibility, then we are incredulous it is happening, and then we nostalgically recall the old way.
Psychiatry is about to change, and it will be astonishingly fast. We all know how vital psychiatric treatment is, and how devoted psychiatrists are to their patients. But we also know that obtaining quality treatment is too daunting and opaque, and treatment itself is time-consuming and inconvenient. Most Americans with DSM-V psychiatric illness try to manage their illness on their own, obtaining no treatment at all. It is a monumental failure, and one of the reasons the new services are finding a footing.
The unfolding changes are also a once-in-a-generation opportunity. While technology is powering the services that are trying to turn healthcare into marketing, it also makes it possible for us to serve our patients far more responsively and seamlessly than we ever have before. That is the mission of Healthpiper, and for over two years, we have been providing treatment that harnesses technology to streamline the collaboration between psychiatrist and patient. I am a graduate of Yale Medical School, and a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at UCLA, and Healthpiper is the fruition of years of development, including input from national leaders in using technology in psychiatry, and an NIH-funded validation study. Our clients are thriving and grateful, and the responsive and effective care we provide makes one proud to be a psychiatrist. And because our innovations cut out inefficiency and waste, we actually have increased the income for the psychiatrist while making it more affordable for our clients. You can help us make Healthpiper even better.