The Scoop: CrowdMed is a crowdsourcing platform where health care professionals work together to diagnose medical mysteries. Patients share their symptoms, family history, and other relevant information, and then a global team of verified experts is on the case. Since its launch, CrowdMed has delivered diagnostic reports to over 1,000 individuals, couples, and families who suffered from unknown illnesses that impeded their quality of life and their relationships.
My grandmother has had fainting spells for as long as I can remember, and no one really knows why. It’s just something that happens. Every once in awhile, my grandmother will “feel a spell coming on,” and she’ll sit down so she doesn’t bruise herself falling over. Sometimes the blackouts last less than a minute, and sometimes they’ll last a couple hours.
She has gone to many doctors over the last 20 years, but she has yet to receive a conclusive diagnosis. One physician said it was related to low blood pressure. Another physician thought she was having mini-seizures, but he couldn’t be certain without giving her an MRI during one of her spells. Her therapist suggested the blackouts were a neurological response to stress.
An undiagnosed medical condition can be a scary thing for a family to face. Patients can be incapacitated by pain or disability while loved ones watch helplessly. Some difficult cases require multiple doctor’s visits, tests, and consultations that sap time without yielding a cure or treatment.
CrowdMed is a startup company on track to disrupt the healthcare industry by using crowdsourcing to improve the diagnostic process. Its high-tech tools and community-oriented space empower thousands of medical detectives to put on their thinking caps and solve mysterious medical cases submitted by patients worldwide.
Since its launch, the CrowdMed crowdsourcing platform has given medical professionals the opportunity to share their knowledge and work together to diagnose unsolved medical cases more rapidly than ever before.
“CrowdMed has changed the game,” said Danyell Jones, CEO of CrowdMed. “There has been nothing really new to the status quo of seeing one doctor at a time — very expensive and time-consuming — until CrowdMed came along.”
The Community Offers a Diagnosis for Mysterious Ailments
Most TV doctors win folks over thanks to their McDreamy eyes or charming quips, but Dr. Gregory House won over the audience by being pompously, irritatingly, and unfailingly right. He would take on the toughest medical cases and do everything he could (including breaking and entering into patient homes) to come up with a solution. Dr. House’s just-in-the-nick-of-time diagnostic genius made for some exciting episodes, but it also gave viewers unrealistic expectations for what doctors are actually capable of doing for their patients.
CrowdMed Founder Jared Heyman pointed out in an interview that “We still hold onto the Dr. House archetype — the idea that a physician should be an omniscient genius.” Yet House’s genius was the result of a team of writers and researchers. “The reality is that crowds are wiser than even the smartest individual in the world,” Jared said, “so long as the right mechanism is in place to aggregate their collective intelligence.”
That’s CrowdMed’s job. It provides a space where medical detectives build a reputation and earn money by diagnosing unresolved medical cases. The site uses the collective knowledge of medical students, doctors, nurses, and other health experts to come to the aid of patients who have gotten lost in the shuffle in the traditional healthcare system.
Anyone can submit a case on CrowdMed, and, in most cases, see between 10 and 15 medical detectives discuss the particulars of the case and work toward a definitive solution. At the end of the process, patients will receive a detailed report on possible diagnoses and potential treatments.
“It is a very interactive setting,” Danyell told us.
The typical CrowdMed patient has been to at least eight doctors in search of a correct diagnosis, and some have been living with symptoms for years due to a lack of communication and collaboration on a particular case. CrowdMed offers a way out of pain and confusion. Its crowdsourced solutions provide diagnoses reviewed and approved by medical professionals around the world.
“The diversity of our case-solving community leads us to get success in solving this super difficult medical case,” Danyell explained. “Patient demographics are all over the board as well. We have less than 2% of patients in a single diagnostic bucket. Our cases are all very unique. We have helped children all the way to the elderly.”
A 60% Success Rate in 1,000+ Real-World Medical Cases
CrowdMed supports patients who are at their wit’s end and tired of hitting dead ends in the search for answers. The platform’s innovative diagnostic model draws from the collective wisdom of the crowd to deliver sound and accurate solutions to baffling medical mysteries.
CrowdMed boasts a 60% success rate on over 1,000 cases. The platform’s helpful community comes to the rescue of patients who have been sick for years and have seen multiple doctors without results.
Patients don’t have to step foot into a doctor’s office to receive a diagnosis from the medical experts on CrowdMed. The easy-to-understand system gives patients the knowledge they need to move forward and receive treatment based on a correct diagnosis.
CrowdMed’s success stories put a face to the help the system can provide. Rip Heminway, for instance, suffered from chronic leg pain and spent thousands of dollars on specialists trying to figure out what was wrong. After some prodding by his wife, Rip turned to CrowdMed and received a comprehensive report on his symptoms, their cause, and potential treatments. He discovered he didn’t need the hip replacement his doctors had suggested. Now Rip is living pain-free and can enjoy family time.
CrowdMed can help couples find the causes behind infertility or pregnancy issues, or it can give singles access to treatment that enables them to live their best life. Over the last year, the platform’s well-informed community has dealt with an array of medical conditions and given patients a new lease on life.
“My CrowdMed experience was nothing short of a miracle,” said a patient named Esperanza. “I received the right diagnosis, and, after many years, I am no longer in pain.”
Medical professionals benefit from the crowdfunded system as well. To date, the highest payout for a case diagnosis was $39,475, which was awarded to a practicing nephrologist under the username Apteryx.
“Apteryx was quick to form a correct diagnosis,” said a patient named Palma. “I later confirmed with a specialist and am on course to receive appropriate treatment.”
Finding New Ways to Change the Health Care Status Quo
CrowdMed is on a mission to shake things up in the healthcare industry by using technology to update and streamline the traditional diagnostic approach. The company has broken new ground and established itself as a forward-thinking leader in the medical community. Thanks to its crowdsourcing platform, CrowdMed has helped thousands of patients receive treatment for their correctly diagnosed illnesses and recover their good health.
The online community has grown by leaps and bounds in the last few years, and the leadership team sees many opportunities to grow on the horizon.
In 2018, the CrowdMed team began working with direct primary care (DPC) doctors to further improve the patient experience and provide meaningful results on a faster timeline. The direct primary care model offers families an affordable way to cover health issues with a monthly, quarterly, or annual fee. Direct primary care doctors take on fewer patients and spend more one-on-one time with them than traditional doctors do.
Danyell said DPCs have a lot in common with CrowdMed because both have been “borne out of failures in the health care status quo.”
CrowdMed has gone to great lengths to put medical knowledge in the hands of everyday individuals. Its platform allows professionals to collaborate, patients to seek help, and the healthcare industry to grow in the right direction. Looking to the future, Danyell told us patients can expect more informational resources geared toward health and wellness. CrowdMed is even working on a pilot for a new national television show about health care in the U.S.
CrowdMed Puts Patients on the Path to a Cure
In the last few years, my grandmother’s fainting spells have become so frequent and unpredictable that she’s had to stop driving. Her condition has caused her to break bones, miss family gatherings, and become more reclusive, and, still, no one knows what’s causing it or how to treat it.
Living with an undiagnosed condition can lower a person’s quality of life and impact their personal relationships in many ways. It can be painful to watch someone you love suffer and not know what, if anything, can be done about it. Doctors can’t always provide the personalized attention and prompt diagnoses patients need, and that’s where CrowdMed comes in.
This intelligent crowdsourcing platform draws from a global community of medical detectives to deliver fast and accurate health reports. The collaborative system has dramatically improved the lives of many patients, some of whom have spent years suffering without any hope of treatment. By promoting innovative, community-oriented diagnostic tools, CrowdMed has ensured that no patient has to face their medical issues alone.
“Our team draws energy from knowing how much we are helping folks with really tough medical conditions,” said Danyell. “A couple of our senior leaders have spent decades in healthcare, and they just love the disruption and new thinking CrowdMed brings to a disparate and broken system.”