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 min read

Startup Health: The Conductor - Careteam Steps Up to Coordinate COVID Tech

The current patient care landscape to an orchestra without a conductor. Everyone is well intentioned and well trained, but no one knows who the leader is or what song they’re playing.

Key Points

  • Healthcare is currently reactive, says Dr. Greenhill. Patients show up for an appointment, make a phone call, and then a series of activities happen. If you’re a diligent patient, you’ll do the follow up steps, but the systems aren’t set up to know that a patient failed to comply with instructions. Physicians just don’t know what has happened between appointments. That’s where care coordination platforms like Careteam come in.
  • There are a lot of apps attempting to help patients in between visits, says Dr. Greenhill, but they tend to bypass the physicians already involved in the patient’s care. Their answer was to create a platform where every doctor, nurse and dietician can share their input.
  • Careteam is currently working with four major health systems across Canada and is beginning roll-outs in the United States.
  • “So many patients end up with severe complications just because there was no coordination,” says Dr. Greenhill.
  • With Careteam, Dr. Greenhill is attempted to double down on ideas published by Atul Gawande in The Checklist Manifesto — the idea that systems thinking that has reduced errors in industries like air travel and manufacturing can be applied to healthcare to streamline care and improve outcomes.
  • Before launching Careteam, Dr. Greenhill was a practicing physician in Canada, working in emergency medicine, family medicine and occupational therapy. This gave her real life exposure to both the acute care and the preventative care settings.
  • Dr. Greenhill likens the current patient care landscape to an orchestra without a conductor. Everyone is well intentioned and well trained, but no one knows who the leader is or what song they’re playing. Careteam can be that conductor, she says.
  • During COVID-19, Careteam expanded their offering so that patients on the platform could instantly access screener tools and telemedicine visits.
  • “I was practicing emergency medicine during SARS in 2002,” says Dr. Greenhill. “Everyone’s criticizing people now for not being prepared, but you have no idea how much better prepared we are now than back in 2002. We had no masks within four days, no one knew how to test or do anything. We got lucky because SARS wasn’t so intense.”
  • “We don’t replace everyone else’s efforts,” says Dr. Greenhill, “we better coordinate their efforts.”


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