Sherpaa diagnoses and manages the vast majority of everyday primary care health issues online without in-person visits (~1,500 common conditions and yours is highly likely one of them). When you have an ongoing relationship with a doctor, even if it’s an exclusively online relationship, and when that doctor can order lab or imaging tests to confirm suspicions, the majority of issues can be solved without an in-person visit. However, some issues need, at some point, tests or an in-person visit with a specialist or facility.
For the few (30%) cases that need an in-person evaluation, who does Sherpaa refer to and why?
- 55% need a specialist visit. For weird, complicated, but not urgent issues.
- 30% need an urgent care center. Pretty straightforward but needs confirmation urgently via tools you’d find in an urgent care center.
- 5% need a retail clinic. Very straightforward, needs confirmation with a simple in-person test, and urgency would be nice but not necessary/worth the extra $250.
- 5% need a primary care physician. Straightforward, but would benefit from routine physical exams.
- 5% need an emergency room. Complicated, weird, potentially life threatening and needs emergency action.
Compiling the last 6 and a half years of data, here’s what we found:
- There are 2.7 cases created per user per year
- 70% of cases are diagnosed and treated without an in-person visit with a doctor or facility
- 30% of cases have an in-person referral at some point in the case
- 20% of cases involve lab or imaging tests
- 40% of cases have prescriptions for medications
- 5% of cases involve phone calls in addition to messaging
What kinds of cases are created?
- I’m sick: 43%
- I’m hurt: 15%
- I need a referral: 15%
- I need a prescription or refill: 11%
- I’ve got a mental health issue: 8%
- I’ve got a chronic problem: 6%
- I need surgery or a test: 2%
What are our most popular symptoms treated online?
How does an online primary care doctor compare to an office-based PCP?
If a Sherpaa primary care doctor can’t diagnose & treat you virtually there’s a 5% chance an office-based PCP is the next most qualified to diagnose & treat you. Adding an exam room to a primary care doctor makes them marginally more effective than an online primary care doctor who has an ongoing relationship with you plus the ability to order tests.