Now, I know it's impossible to reduce all of healthcare to a Facebook or Yelp app. Rating your doctor is not like rating your mechanic. If the patient is being seen for a mental health disorder, how exactly is that supposed to work on a social network?
But in a country where Starbucks spends more money on healthcare than on coffee, and General Motors spends more on healthcare than it does on steel, some sort of tipping point is coming, and technology will play a pivotal role.
Patients are tweeting their conditions, assembling their own social networks without the benefit of doctors or insurers, and payers are seeing their tidy little world explode into a new firmament of small retail clinics and government mandates.
Aneesh Chopra, former CTO of the United States, told a room full of aspiring health tech innovators at SXSW that providers have productive scheduling and billing software, but little else to show patients for all their investment in IT.
Chopra, who left the U.S. CTO position last month to return to The Advisory Board research firm in a senior advisor role, says the "raw material is there. We've seen a doubling of the number of practices who've adopted electronic health records. We're seeing incentives change now, with the Affordable Care Act [with] hospitals paid for value, and we're seeing an unprecedented opening up of data."