NetLiveMD provides email communications between consumers and physicians. It aims to allow patients (particularly those who are reluctant to see a doctor) to get customized healthcare information. While the service’s potential is clear, its success will depend on how value adding the consultations are to users and how effectively it is marketed.
Online medical consultancy NetLiveMD is growing in popularity.
US online medical consultation business NetLiveMD is growing in popularity. Several major insurance and benefits associations are considering encouraging their members to sign up for its services.
NetLiveMD provides email communications between consumers and medical professionals. It aims to allow patients who would not normally address their given health issue due to financial or personal reasons to communicate with qualified physicians and receive information customized to their specific needs.
The company’s healthcare professionals communicate with their clients through email, providing each with a personalized health evaluation. Customers must fill out extensive health histories before consultation is given.
However, NetLiveMD does not offer its clients specific advice. Instead, it provides them with information, giving several possible diagnoses that patients can ultimately present to their doctors. The online consultations are not intended to replace physician visits, but to complement them. The service’s second-party nature allows patients to get answers to questions that they are hesitant to ask their physicians.
Currently, NetLiveMD charges its clients an annual fee and a set fee for each question answered. Although it only has a few hundred members to date, it has a significant upside. Midwestern insurance and financial benefits organization Catholic Knights is encouraging its members to subscribe to the service, and several other associations are also interested.
Part of the success of NetLiveMD’s proposition depends on how value-adding its consultations are to users, and how effectively it markets the service. Although the offering should be able to provide value, its ultimate success will depend on whether it is appropriate within the current healthcare climate.
Related research: Datamonitor, 2002: Online Clinical Care Tools: Integrating Treatment Tools into the eMarketing Mix