As just about everything is handled remotely, start-up organizations continue to make the news by implementing Uber-style experiences and on-demand healthcare services.

While having doctors and nurses on demand initially seems like a great idea, is an Uber for healthcare even possible?

The Uber Components

We have the technology to change the traditional house call, but is it realistic to keep the services low-cost and efficient, as Uber has achieved? Obviously there are more licensed drivers than licensed doctors, so resources would have to be allocated differently. The strengths of Uber are that the service can be requested with a push of a button, is typically cheaper and faster than a taxi, and shows the user customer ratings for the selected driver.

Currently Available

Uber itself briefly tried to discover the healthcare industry as UberHEALTH, which offered to deliver flu shots in select markets for one day last fall. However, healthcare professionals were not driving the vehicle, but instead Uber drivers transported registered nurses to the requested location. When you seach for “UberHealth” on the Uber website, you can see that there hasn’t been much posted since this one-day program in 2014.

We wrote about various healthcare home service apps a few months ago, including Pager, and also reported on the apps DiabetesHelper and Alert in a separate post, which planned to partner with Uber to offer the ability to quickly request a car within the app.

What’s Next?

With these recent developments in the industry, I wonder what else is possible in the nearby future. Is there an app that, in case of an emergency, could show you the nearest licensed healthcare professional and send a notification to request help? If not already, chances are there will be soon.

While there are more convenient healthcare options for the wealthy in select markets, they may not be available for everyday citizen. It seems that there has to be some kind of trade off to the traditional doctor visit, such as seeing a nurse practitioner instead of a specialist for your condition, or paying more for faster service.

Read more about our Everything As a Service trend (#5 in Consumer Trends).

About the Author:

As Managing Director of Innovation for Syneos Health Communications, Leigh is responsible for shaping the company’s perspective on the next era of healthcare marketing. Through thought leadership, strategic innovation workshops and new products and capabilities, Leigh focuses on identifying marketing approaches that will fuel that new era and generate significant growth for clients. Leigh has worked with Fortune 1000 companies to craft their digital, mobile, social and CRM strategies for over 17 years. She’s worked for category-leading agencies in retail, public affairs, B2B technology, and higher education. Prior to moving to Syneos Health Communications, she had several leadership roles at one of our agencies, GSW. There, she founded an innovation practice fueled by the zeitgeist and spearheaded digital and innovation thinking across the business. Leigh has taken a special interest in complex healthcare products that can change lives in meaningful ways. She was recently a strategic lead on the 3rd largest launch in pharmaceutical history: Tecfidera. Before that she had keys roles with Eli Lilly Oncology, Abbott Nutrition, Amgen Cardiovascular, and Eli Lilly Diabetes. A critical part of Leigh’s work is trends and new ideas. Every year, she convenes a group of trend watchers from across our global network to identify the shifts most critical to healthcare marketers. Leigh is a sought-after writer and speaker. Recognized as one of the most inspiring people in the pharmaceutical industry by PharmaVoice, Leigh also was recognized as a Rising Star by the Healthcare Businesswomen's Association (HBA) for her overt passion, industry thought leadership and significant contributions in new business, strategy and mentoring.