Ringadoc Debuts ‘Anywhere, Anytime’ Doctor Answering Service API

Amy Castor, June 19th, 2013

It’s after five o’clock, and you’ve got a weird rash running up your arm. You call your doctor, but instead end up talking to an after-hours operator, who jots down notes, hangs up and then calls the doctor for you. Ringadoc feels patients would rather interact with their doctors directly, so it has developed an automated answering service that lets physicians receive and manage after-hour voice messages from patients. The company just released the Ringadoc API to help keep these interactions HIPPA compliant.

Most patients feel uncomfortable relaying private health information to non-medical professionals, says the San Francisco startup. What’s more, whenever a message gets passed along through a third person, something risks getting lost in the shuffle.

So Ringdoc has developed a cloud platform that lets doctors triage secure phone messages. If a patient marks a call urgent, the service notifies the provider, who can choose to either instantly call back, send a voice message or forward the call to the office voicemail.

Unlike typical answering services, Ringdoc fields patient messages in their entirety. It also tracks, logs and updates calls in real time. Providers pay a monthly fee for the cloud service, which they can access via their iPhone or Android phone, a website or a toll-free number.

Per HIPPA regulations, all patient-provider communications must be saved. That’s where Ringadoc’s API fits in. EMR companies, billing companies, physicians services and the like can embed the RESTful API in other platforms to capture call data and ensure compliance.

The company just announced a marketing partnership with Practice Fusion, a medical records company. Through the partnership, Ringadoc hopes to reach more than 100,000 users of the Practice Fusion platform to market its product.

So far Ringadoc has raised $1.9 million in seed funding. Two years ago, the company started out offering on-demand video and telephone chat access to physicians, but shifted its focus earlier this year to improving after-hour phone consultations for patients and physicians.

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