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ChatMD

by Christina Girgis, M.D.

A networking app for physicians: medicine connected, one physician at a time.

Hinsdale, IL Medical Education

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About this project

The problem we solve:
In working with residents, I noticed that once a trainee graduates, he or she is making their way in practice essentially on their own. No longer having to report to anyone, most early-career physicians feel alone and unsure of how to keep up on the latest evidence-based practices or manage the intricacies of a new job, and lack a network for support and or simply to discuss cases. Physician burnout has also recently been highlighted; one way of managing burnout is peer support and validation. Facebook allows for physician networking, but there are concerns about privacy and security issues in particular when posting case discussions. LinkedIn allows for networking, but this site is open to all professions; and Doximity is a site for health professionals (not just physicians) that allows for posting a profile but not interacting with peers. Sermo is a site specific to physicians that allows for chatting, but has anonymous profiles, leading to unprofessional commentary.

About our solution:
I am proposing a networking app for physicians. The app would be available to all physicians, with forums divided by specialty and forums where various specialties could interact. Imagine having a neurologist be able to post an endocrine question and having multiple physicians respond immediately. This app has many possibilities and would allow for networking, case discussions, and physician-to-physician job postings. There would also be an easily accessible physician referral database that would allow for instant referrals for patients. Physicians would discuss trends in the field, and keep a finger on the pulse of medicine, most importantly seeing what other physicians do in their daily practice. There would be a sense of community, in particular for those in rural or private practice, and the possibility of ad-hoc mentorship. Such an app could potentially be sponsored by large medical organizations to both verify members’ credentials and provide an incentive for membership.
Progress to date: To address this problem within my own field, just 3 months ago I formed PsychNet, a Facebook group for psychiatrists and residents. The group has grown quickly and today we are at over 4100 members. The group has been extremely active, with dozens of posts daily that each garner many responses. Topics include case discussions and requests for referrals. Most valuably, psychiatrists hear what others are doing in their daily practice and have instant access to a large number of opinions in real time. The posts generate multiple viewpoints and have directly affected psychiatric practice and patient care in a positive and novel way. What has made the group so successful and popular? The group has become a place for psychiatrists to share their experiences, ask each other about difficult situations, support each other, and share information. Such a network can be easily applied all physicians. (My video submission is about PsychNet, to give an idea of what could be possible with ChatMD.)

About Our Team


Dr. Christina Girgis, M.D.
Psychiatry , Practicing Physician
Location: Hines, Illinois
Medical school: Northeast Ohio Medical University
Bio: Dr. Girgis is a Chicago-based psychiatrist and attended residency at Rush University. She is the medical director of the CL psychiatry service at Hines VA and residency associate training director at Loyola University. Interests include the stigmatization of mental health issues in physicians. She is the founder of an online networking group for psychiatrists and residents, PsychNet, currently at 4100 members. Dr. Girgis was recently a national finalist at the APA's Innovation Lab.
Practice: Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital
Hospital Affiliation: Loyola University Medical Center
Title: ChatMD
Twitter: @psych_net and @getaheadwithdrg
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/christina-girgis-m-d-486b28b7?trk=hp-identity-name

About Our Company

ChatMD
Location: Hinsdale, Illinois
Product stage: idea
Sales: Working on it
Employees: 1-2

How We Help Patients

Ultimately, as a patient, do you want a physician to be taking care of you without ever connecting with their peers? Or would you prefer to have a doctor who talks to colleagues, asks questions, and gets opinions before making a decision regarding your health and treatment? Physicians get better when they are able to create a dialogue within their communities. A forum like this will allow physicians to ask each other questions in order to directly affect patient care in a positive way. Example #1: your doctor starts you on a new blood pressure medication and is not sure which side effects are most commonly seen with this medication. Option A: read the medication insert; Option B: check with peers to see what side effects they hear about the most. Example #2: you are moving out-of-state and ask your doctor for a referral. Option A: your doctor can tell you to check with your insurance panel; Option B: your doctor asks and gets names of peers who are well-regarded.

How We Help Education

Currently, the model of learning we have set up in medicine is the following: -medical school: interact with other medical students at your own school -residency: interact with other residents in your own program -practice: interact with physicians in your own practice or if lucky, at a larger hospital What if we disrupt this model and could put networking at the forefront of medical education? Imagine being able to be in touch with peers outside of your immediate institution and circle. I propose that we transform the way that we learn from and educate each other, starting with a physician networking app that will help support physicians as well as educate them in a novel and innovative way. This model of learning can and should be applied to physicians at all levels of training, including medical school and residency.

How We Help Physicians

I recently asked PsychNet members what they get from the group: “Respectful, professional, multicultural group that draws experience from diverse training and practice.” “It's like a neutral party to bounce ideas off of; instant access to knowledge base for non-clinical issues (running a practice, etc.)” “In the trenches resources at my fingertips, guidelines are great but personal experiences are better. Great having others who understand the stress of the profession.” “Running into challenges in treatment and asking such a large group of professionals. I have learned more from this group than paid CMEs!” “Work in SNFs and rehabs is pretty isolating. Appreciate being able to get feedback at times convenient to me. Helps prevent burnout.” “The ability to laugh and learn with other physicians is fun, educational, interesting and appreciated. Always learn something new or confirm practice standards.” “Being in private practice, group helps to see many different viewpoints."

Challenge Mission

Mission: I propose transforming medicine with a fresh new top-down approach. Helping physicians support each other and learn from each other ultimately benefits our practice and the care of our patients.
Use of funds: A grant of up to $25,000 would be helpful in order to: hire a healthcare attorney to address medicolegal aspects of an app and creating a business or non-profit; creating an LLC or 501c3; hiring an app and website developer; hiring a graphic designer; and using some of the funds to create marketing and branding. I would also use part of the funds to create events connected to medical society meetings in order to advertise the app directly to physicians. I would also like to hire a tech-savvy medical student for the summer as an intern/fellow to help with many of the administrative tasks that would be required. This idea would benefit tremendously from having the stamp of approval of the American Medical Association. The initial funds will be very helpful to start this project, but ultimately it will need to fund itself and I plan to do that possibly through ad revenue versus a small fee for users of the app.
Intellectual Property Status: I have not yet applied for intellectual property status.
FDA Status: This project would not need FDA clearance.
Personal Message: I am asking everyone who is invested in their own health to consider supporting an innovative idea that will transform the way physicians learn from and educate each other. A physician networking app will create the ultimate medical community and will add tremendous value to our healthcare system. Together, let’s revolutionize our collective health.

Supporters

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    06/27/2016 Steven Daviss - Physician

    Interested in mentorship.

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    06/27/2016 Steven Daviss - Physician

    Liked the project.

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    06/27/2016 Steven Daviss - Physician

    Followed the project.

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    05/20/2016 Meshel Farastapour - Resident

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 John Lim - Physician

    Followed the project.

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    05/20/2016 Dr. Leila Parand - Resident

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 John Lim - Physician

    Interested in trying the project.

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    05/20/2016 Nancy McKnabb - Hospital Staff

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Interested in mentorship.

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    05/20/2016 Joe Yensel - Other

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Followed the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Interested in trying the project.

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    05/20/2016 Dinesh Jallela - Resident

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Interested in partnership.

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    05/20/2016 Lenora Mathes - Resident

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 John Lim - Physician

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Victor Pyter - Other

    Liked the project.

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    05/20/2016 Manpuneet Samra - Resident

    Interested in piloting the project.

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    05/19/2016 karen blackman - Physician

    Liked the project.

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    05/19/2016 karen blackman - Physician

    Followed the project.

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    05/18/2016 Dr. Christina Girgis - Physician

    Followed the project.

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    05/18/2016 Dr. Christina Girgis - Physician

    Liked the project.

13

likes

5

Follows

0

Pilots

0

Partners

53

Interest
Score

2

Adoption
Score


Christina Girgis, M.D.
Physician
ChatMD
Northeast Ohio Medical University

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