5 rings: Welcome to our patient sickcare disservice department. Your business is important to us, so please wait for a disservice representative to take your call. The average wait time is 35 minutes. (musak on phone: Press 1 for jazz, 2 for classical or 3 for rock ). Many of your questions can be answered on this website, where we dis not just patients, but doctors too.
Rep (R): Who do I have the pleasure of speaking with ?
Caller (C): Arlen Meyers
R: Thank you Miss Arlene, how may I help you?
C: My name is Arlen and I'm a male
R: Sorry, Arlene. Is there a number where I can contact you if we get disconnected?
C: You can call me on my phone. You already have the number because the telephone tree asked me to verify it.
R: I'm sorry, Arlene. Can you please repeat it?
R: I'm sorry but that number is not in our records. Is there another number we can use?
C: Try my home number at 315-698-4440
R: Can you please verify your 3rd cousin's elementary school for security purposes?
C: No I can't. How about if I fax you his genome instead?
R: In that case, I need to send you a text code to verify your identity as part of our new two-factor authentication system. Ordinary charges may apply.
C: I don't have access to my cell phone. I'm calling from a land line. Plus, aren't you using voice authenication to verify my identity already, or are you just keeping that a secret?
R: You are calling from a what?
C: You know, that ugly thing that hangs on your kitchen wall
R: Please hold so I can take the next steps to help you (on hold for another 5 minutes while the agent in Manila consults with her supervisor in Bangalore)
R: It seems you have a smart speaker in your kitchen monitoring this call so we can indeed help you. What seems to be the problem?
C: I suspect that someone is listening to me on my smart speaker in my kitchen to gather health information, my zip code, the food I am eating and whether I am taking my medicine like I am supposed to plus other social determinants of my health.
R:To fix that, please be sure your home internet is on, that your smart speaker is plugged in and that there is a blinking red light on the bottom right of speaker.
Please reboot your speaker by unplugging it, wait 3 minutes and then plug it back in.
C: (3 minutes later). Ok. I've done what you said and every thing is the same...hello...hello.
Hey, Alexa, who can I see for my chest pain?
Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is the President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs on Twitter@ArlenMD.
Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is a professor emeritus of otolaryngology, dentistry, and engineering at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health and President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs at www.sopenet.org. He has created several medical device and digital health companies. His primary research centers around biomedical and health innovation and entrepreneurship and life science technology commercialization. He consults for and speaks to companies, governments, colleges and universities around the world who need his expertise and contacts in the areas of bio entrepreneurship, bioscience, healthcare, healthcare IT, medical tourism -- nationally and internationally, new product development, product design, and financing new ventures. He is a former Harvard-Macy fellow and In 2010, he completed a Fulbright at Kings Business, the commercialization office of technology transfer at Kings College in London. He recently published "Building the Case for Biotechnology." "Optical Detection of Cancer", and " The Life Science Innovation Roadmap". He is also an associate editor of the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology and Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship and Editor-in-Chief of Medscape. In addition, He is a faculty member at the University of Colorado Denver Graduate School where he teaches Biomedical Entrepreneurship and is an iCorps participant, trainer and industry mentor. He is the Chief Medical Officer at www.bridgehealth.com and www.cliexa.com and Chairman of the Board at GlobalMindED at www.globalminded.org, a non-profit at risk student success network. He is honored to be named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives of 2011 and nominated in 2012 and Best Doctors 2013.