Baylor Scott & White Health has hired Kyruus, a Boston-based company, to manage its information flow and to give clients online access to specifics about where to find treatment among the health system’s 48 hospitals, including its Waco location, and its 1,000 access points and 5,500 participating doctors.
“Kyruus will enhance the online experience offered to consumers,” spokeswoman Serena Bronda said.
Bronda said Kyruus helps health systems in sharing information internally and with the general public, with the goal of giving consumers a one-stop option in their pursuit of health care. She said clients will have phone, online and person-to-person exposure to providers.
“Improving patient access starts with capturing complete and accurate information about the providers within a health system,” Kyruus CEO Graham Gardner wrote in a press release.
Julie Yoo, chief product officer and co-founder of Kyruus, said in a phone interview the seven-year-old company has grown to 350 clients, including 26 sizable health systems such as Baylor Scott & White Health, with 95,000 physicians associated with those systems.
“Patients are told to wait a week to see a doctor, and we assume that’s because every doctor is booked solid,” Yoo said. “That’s typically not the case. Most health systems are working at 60 to 80 percent of capacity utilization. A digitized inventory of providers means shorter wait times, which benefits the patient and the provider.”
Yoo compared the service to Travelocity and Expedia in the travel industry.
She said in some cases the process means coordinating an appointment with a physician who is not the patient’s regular doctor.
“But this is a soft referral system in which we recommend the best possible options. At the end of the day, patients make their own choices. We do not prescribe or force any selection," she said. “If the patient wants to stick with the original choice, that’s fine, though it could mean a longer wait for an appointment.”
The system also will allow patients to go online and review information about physicians, and doctors can do the same for patients, she said.
“A doctor may notice that laboratory results look a little unusual, as reported online, and recommend a visit to the cardiologist,” Yoo said.
Her company has a growing staff of about 100 who visit clients and provide training on the nuances of using its products, she said.
She said some clients publish the cost of services, but she cautioned she is not saying Baylor Scott & White Health will take that approach.
“The service we and others provide is a growing trend in the industry, and it is receiving a lot of attention from venture capitalists who want to provide funding,” Yoo said. “They view it as a massive market opportunity.”
One of the Kyruus programs will give Baylor Scott & White patients access to the company’s database of doctors and other providers who deal with specific conditions and illnesses, according to a press release on the contract.
Kyruus will complement the health system’s effort to provide patients with personal health care information through mybswhealth.com and the myBSWHealth app, Baylor Scott & White spokeswoman Julie Smith wrote in a statement to the Tribune-Herald.