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The Doctor’s Computer Will Email You Now
National Public Radio

A health care startup made a wild pitch to Cara Waller, CEO of the Newport Orthopedic Institute. The company said it could get patients more engaged with their care by automating physician empathy.

It “almost made me nauseous,” she said. How can you automate something as deeply personal as empathy?

But Waller needed help. Her physicians in Orange County, Calif., perform as many as 500 surgeries a year, manage large numbers of patients at various stages of treatment and recovery. The doctors needed a better way to communicate with patients and track their progress.

The California startup, HealthLoop, told Waller its messaging technology would improve patient satisfaction and help keep them out of the hospital. High satisfaction scores and low readmission rates mean higher reimbursements from Medicare. Waller was intrigued and decided to give the technology a try.

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