MUMBAI, India, January 8, 2015 /PRNewswire/ --
The question that needs to be asked is - Do you really need surgery? Will surgery really make you well & healthy? The MediAngels.com data has found an uncomfortable answer to these questions. The answer has been quite bothersome for every family & every person, who has been asked to undergo surgery. Almost 44% of the 12,500 patients for whom surgery was recommended were advised against it by their chosen super-specialist doctors, from whom they sought a second opinion. This data was so relevant, that it was featured here, by Times of India, India's largest & most respected English newspaper (1st Page Times of India's Coverage, all editions, Jan 4th 2015).
Unnecessary surgery is not new in medicine. Orthopaedic surgeons in the United States were, four months ago, accused of overdoing total knee replacement surgeries by almost a third.
MediAngels, the world's first online hospital, has 350 of the world's best doctors, from over 93 specialties & over 15 countries, as part of its elite physician network. You, the consumers, can use the internet to access http://www.MediAngels.com, from wherever you are and seek an opinion on your condition, get blood tests done and store your medical records, all from the comforts of your home. The "by invitation" only, chosen physician network makes MediAngels arguably the most comprehensive medical panel across the world. While MediAngels was ostensibly set up to provide access to top quality healthcare, many patients around the world use the same to get a best in class second opinion, to get information & make informed decisions on their health. Medical Information is invariably becoming important and critically because for a significant lot of us there is no second chance when it comes to medical care, really!
MediAngels.com recently studied its first 20,000 consultations over the past two years and found several people were advised "unnecessary surgeries" by their primary doctors. While evidence-based clinical practice guidelines & preferred practice protocols exist in a variety of specialties and subspecialties in medicine, consistent evidence suggests that adherence to guidelines is poor. This is what MediAngels found out from their last two year's data. This data justifies the very reason why patients and doctors are increasingly seeking second opinions & online consults. The rate of diagnostic discrepancies has a huge human and financial impact.
Let us look at some of the key pointers from the MediAngels data and analyse what it means for all of us:
- 70% of MediAngels users were from the top 10 cities of India. 50% of MediAngels users were from the countries other than India, the USA, UK, Middle East and Africa being important geographies. 22% patients were referred by their treating physicians, or a physician they knew.
- Approximately 12,500 of the 20,000 patients sought opinions on surgery related cases - i.e. They had been suggested surgery and wanted to know if this was the only and / or the best choice for their health.
- Of the 12, 500 patients who sought surgery related second opinions, the second opinion provided in 44% of these patients suggested the surgery was unnecessary and there were more relevant, less invasive, treatment options available.
So, why was this the case? Why were so many patients advised surgery, when their physician peers (equally or better qualified) think that it was unnecessary?
Medicine is becoming more and more super-specialized, as a result of which it is difficult to have all specialties exclusively under a roof. Like for example, a few years ago, a MBBS doctor would perform a hydrocele surgery, however, today it would come under a general surgeon's domain exclusively.
Says Dr.Debraj Shome, a top Facial Plastic Surgeon & Co-founder and CEO of MediAngels, who started MediAngels, post a personal health experience, "The best medical outcomes occur, when you receive a diagnosis & treatment on your disease, from a physician who has the most training & the most expertise in treating that disease. However, these super-specialist doctors are very are resources. And, one of the major problems is equitably distributing these specialist doctors all over the world.
Dr.Shome said, "Our data shows that maybe getting to the right doctor could make sure that these patients would have received the appropriate advice regarding their disease. As medicine becomes more & more super-specialized, medical outcomes improve. Another thing to remember is that doctors too come from the rest of society. If other professionals are making commercial decisions, doctors too are humans and some of us may do that. Hence, to protect your interests, it is always good for patients to seek a neutral, credible, second opinion. We even look at a second store, before buying a phone, why should our health then be any different?"
Clearly, a second opinion, if nothing else, may give you more confidence in the first opinion and keep your health in safe hands. So, go get a second medical opinion, what have you got to lose? The time has probably come to ask "Do I really NEED the SURGERY?" & "Will SURGERY really make me WELL?"
MediAngels is the World's First Online Hospital, which was co-founded by Dr. Debraj Shome, who is one of the best Facial Plastic Surgeons, and Dr. Arbinder Singal, who is one of the top Pediatric Urologists in India. MediAngels has been funded by HDFC Holdings Ltd (India's largest Private Equity firm), Followed by Technology Development Board (TDB - Government of India), and then by VenturEast(A top VC firm), in the last year.
SOURCE Angels Health Pvt. Ltd