SEATTLE, Jan. 23, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Today ZocDoc launches in the Greater Seattle region, offering instant access to doctor appointments online and via its free mobile applications. At launch, the service provides patients with their choice of more than 50,000 available appointments with participating primary care doctors, obstetrician-gynecologists and dermatologists throughout the Seattle area.
ZocDoc's mission is to improve access to healthcare. By allowing patients to find a doctor, sort by location and insurance plan, and schedule appointments online at ZocDoc.com, the service eliminates time-consuming phone calls so that patients can book anytime – even when the doctor's office is closed. Patients are shown a variety of tools to help choose the best medical provider for their needs, including each doctor's qualifications, languages spoken, professional statement, and reviews. ZocDoc also offers a free app for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry, allowing patients to find doctors and make appointments on the go. ZocDoc has raised more than $95 million in funding to date from the leading names in technology and finance, including Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon.com.
Cyrus Massoumi, ZocDoc co-founder and CEO, developed the idea for ZocDoc while on a flight from Seattle to New York in 2007. He burst his eardrum during the flight, and upon landing in New York he was unable to find a doctor who could see him for four days. "My painful experience made me realize that while technology has brought us instant access to books, flights, and music, nothing is more important than medical care when you need it. No service existed that could deliver instant access to a doctor," said Massoumi. "It feels great to simplify the healthcare system for Seattle residents, and bring our service to the very place where the idea for ZocDoc was born."
Seattle-area residents wait more than two weeks on average for medical appointments, according to a study by healthcare search and consulting firm Merritt Hawkins. ZocDoc's unique system reveals a hidden supply of doctor availability, including appointments cancelled last-minute by patients, and makes it instantly accessible online. The system thus reduces wait times for patients and increases efficiency for medical providers – a vital service given the country's current doctor shortage. Forty percent of all appointments scheduled by ZocDoc users occur within one day, and 60 percent of ZocDoc appointments take place within three days.
As of today, primary care physicians, obstetrician-gynecologists, and dermatologists are offering more than 50,000 appointments across Seattle, Bellevue, Tacoma, and the surrounding areas. Additional doctors, specialties, and appointment times will be added in the coming months.
To use the service, patients visit the ZocDoc website (www.zocdoc.com) or use one of the free ZocDoc apps to enter their location, insurance plan, and the type of healthcare provider they would like to see. ZocDoc then shows each doctor's schedule in real-time, along with credentials and patient reviews, in order to help patients choose the practitioner who best fits their needs. Patients simply select a timeslot and complete a brief checkout process to book an appointment. ZocDoc then sends email and text message reminders to help patients remember to attend their doctor visits.
The Seattle region is the 14th area to receive ZocDoc service, and the city was chosen due to high demand in the area for ZocDoc. Thousands of residents voted for ZocDoc to come to their city at http://www.zocdoc.com/vote. ZocDoc currently offers medical appointments in major metropolitan areas including Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas-Fort Worth, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami-Palm Beach, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, DC. To learn more about ZocDoc, please visit the ZocDoc press room. Follow the latest ZocDoc news on the ZocDoc blog, via Twitter, or on Facebook.
ZocDoc, founded in 2007, is improving access to healthcare by enabling patients to search for doctors, sort by location and insurance accepted, read verified reviews, and instantly book an appointment online or via the free ZocDoc Apps for iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry. There are over 5.5 million medical appointments available on ZocDoc. More than 800,000 people use ZocDoc to find a doctor or dentist each month.