Get Linked To A Dermatologist With DermLinkBY: Michelle Doellman | February 18, 2012
*This story is sixth in a series featuring the initial participants of Healthbox Accelerator.
THE IDEA: DermLink gives referring doctors, dermatologists and patients an easy way to reduce time spent waiting for appointments to open and conditions to be diagnosed with remote diagnosis.
THE BACKGROUND: Founder Victor Gane came up with the idea after seeing how long it took for a co-worker to get into a dermatologist after his condition was initially misdiagnosed by a primary care physician. The co-worker had to wait several weeks for an opening with a dermatologist to become available.
Gane finished his Ph.D. in June and immediately began an entrepreneurship program at the Stanford School of Business. Dermatology was chosen specifically because of the rising number of skin related diagnosis and conditions and the amount of time patients spend waiting to see this type of specialized physician.
“Primary care physicians see about 60 percent of all dermatology cases and have a high misdiagnosis rate,” said Gane.
HOW IT WORKS: There are three main parts to DermLink: portals for initial primary physicians, dermatologists and patients. Primary care physicians can send referrals through DermLink and dermatologists can use the referrals to fill in open appointments in person. Dermatologists can also work from home or in between appointments with information patients submit using photographs. The portal has a system which will automatically adjust the quality of the photograph for the dermatologist to view for the most accurate diagnosis. This is what Gane calls “teledermatology.”
“In medical board exams, this is actually how dermatologists are being taught how to diagnose,” said Gane. “Doctors are given a picture and one minute to make a diagnosis and treatment plan.”