What happens when you combine consumer demand for more convenient delivery of healthcare services and the entrepreneurial spirit? Services like Minneapolis-based “Zipnosis”. According to an article in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune, Zipnosis is intended to offer greater convenience for the treatment of “minor ailments like common colds, allergies or bladder infections.” Using Zipnosis, patients fill out an online survey which is assessed by two nurse practitioners and electronically receive a diagnosis (and, if required, a prescription) within a few hours.
I am not advocating for this type of service nor do I have the medical qualifications to assess the potential patient safety risks. I do, however, think that it is an example of the type of services that baby-boomers, used to a trend towards greater convenience in other industries, will demand from the health sector. Having watched the Internet disrupt other industries in response to consumer demand for more convenience and lower prices, I suspect we will see more creative offerings like Zipnosis.