When you visit google.com, there’s a big free text box encouraging you to use their core feature, search. For one of the world’s largest companies, it’s a refreshingly simple almost blank white page. That’s because they know what role they play in the world. That page is the entry point to organizing the world’s information. Search is a tool to solve a problem, just as doctors are tools to solve problems.
What is the entry point into healthcare? If you ask healthcare folks, it’s “call up and make an appointment.” In other words, give a local PCP $200 and they may or may not help you. There’s a good chance, due to their busy schedule, they’ll just refer you to a specialist because PCPs just don’t have the time to deal with you.
The entry point into healthcare needs to be free and an intelligent service that either solves your problem virtually or directs you to exactly the level of service and who and what you need. Google gave search away and grew into, well, a couple hundred billion dollar verb. Healthcare needs to do the same thing. The entry point into healthcare needs to be a free human-powered, tech-enabled care and triage service.