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A Doctor Grows in Brooklyn

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Doctor Jay Parkinson became a celebrity last year as word spread about his unconventional practice in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Instead of maintaining a traditional office and paying support staff, Parkinson's operation is entirely virtual and requires almost no overhead. (Unless you consider a Mac overhead.) Instead, he operates a web site loaded with Web 2.0 touches that allows patients to easily get in touch and explains his services in plain English. After an initial in-person consultation, exchanges can be online, either through instant messaging, email or web cam. He uses Gmail to handle his email load and has neatly integrated Google Calendar into his web site - allowing patients to see his schedule at a glance and book their own appointments.

Resisting the argument that technology has created a new Race to the Bottom in healthcare, by making medicine less human and the healthcare system increasingly complex, Parkinson argues that when used properly, Web 2.0 tools like mash-ups, mobile devices, instant messaging, digital video and social networking can free doctors to spend more time with patients - not less.




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