Innovation That Matters

Site taps Facebook for friends' anonymous doctor and dentist recommendations

Sport & Fitness

WhichDoc is a New York-based company that taps the user's social network for doctor and dentist referrals.

If Facebook friends are a group to be trusted for vacation rentals and even dating guidance, it stands to reason that they should be a good source for physician recommendations as well. Enter WhichDoc, a New York-based company that taps the user’s social network for doctor and dentist referrals. Now in beta, WhichDoc digitizes the word-of-mouth recommendations of friends in a completely anonymous way to help users find the doctors and dentists most trusted by those they know. Users begin by creating a free account or connecting directly through Facebook Connect. From there, WhichDoc automatically imports the user’s Facebook friends, and other contacts can be added as well. Users then input their own evaluation of the doctors they’ve used, judging them on characteristics such as “bedside manner”, for example. Once that’s done, they can search for doctors and dentists across the US — focusing in particular on the characteristics most important to them — and find the ones most recommended by their friends. All suggestions are kept anonymous, so users never know which friends are seeing a therapist, for example; for those with fewer than 100 contacts, “friends of friends” are automatically included. Recommended care guidelines are also available on the site to help users keep track of what medical tests and procedures they need to have done and when they need to have them. The site also lists friends’ favorite doctors for each test and procedure. Consumers’ social networks are a virtual treasure trove of advice that we expect to see tapped again and again for all kinds of recommendations. Tech-savvy entrepreneurs: how could you give consumers a previously unopened window into the opinions of their friends?



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