'Uberization' of medicine in Seattle

SEATTLE — Some may remember when doctors made house calls. Now,  there's an app for that.

Swedish in Seattle just rolled it out and freely admits it is “Uber for medicine.”

Dr. Sunita Mishra showed KIRO 7 the new app.  After a quick sign up process, you drop and pin where you need medical attention.  Push a button, and get a call in minutes and a medical professional at your location in the same day.

The visits are available seven days a week just in Seattle for now, at a cost of $199 that the patient can bill to insurance.

“When you're sick, the last thing you want to do is get in a car, then wait in the lobby,” said Mishra.  “So patients are really happy they can do this in the comfort of their own homes.”

Mishra had the idea for the app because even as a doctor she had trouble scheduling convenient care for herself.  However, when KIRO 7 showed the app to patients outside Swedish on First Hill, people immediately thought of how it would fit into their own lives.

Young people who often think going to the doctor is not worth it said they might reconsider.  Elderly people who have trouble getting around said it would be a big convenience for when they get sick, and said it reminded them of the days when all doctors came to you.

This “Uberization” of medicine is gaining momentum.  Last year Swedish had success rolling out an app that allowed patients to face-time with someone, who then could even e-mail over a prescription if needed.  Mishra sees those types of conveniences as a must for medicine in Seattle where every industry’s customer service is compared to Starbucks and Amazon.​