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The healthcare industry is vastly underestimating the ripple effects of virtual medicine. Remember record stores?

Instant Access


Getting healthcare will be radically faster. Whether by online chat or tele-medicine, you’ll be able to consult with physicians in minutes, not days. Faster lab testing, and even home lab testing with lab-on-a-chip technology, can lead to a diagnosis in under an hour. In some cases, constant-monitoring sensors will detect you’re getting ill—even before you feel any symptoms. Together, these create Instant-Access Medicine, eliminating the pervasive waiting game that drives costs up and allows ailments to go untreated.


  1. 01

    WAIT to see if it goes away on its own.

  2. 02

    If it doesn’t, WAIT for an appointment.

  3. 03

    WAIT for lab test results.

  4. 04

    WAIT for referral to specialist.

  5. 05

    WAIT for appointment with specialist.

  6. 06

    WAIT for more test or scan results.

  7. 07

    Once treatment begins, WAIT to heal.

Every time patients have to wait, they feel powerless and lack agency. Frustrated, they take to the internet to Google their symptoms and remedies. Quickly, they’re directed to a $51 billion netherworld where they read that medical science is corrupt, the pharmaceutical industry spreads propaganda and the FDA suppresses the truth about alternative herbal remedies. Why wait, the internet beckons, when you can order online now? Or visit your local naturopathy shop, no prescription needed. Desperate for a remedy, patients think, Well, it’s natural, I might as well try it. The worst part is that 70% of patients who use herbal medicines don’t tell their physician they’re doing so, largely because the patients fear being told to stop. Systematically, this breeds a lack of faith in scientific medicine.

Instant-Access Medicine will help restore trust in the system, simply by eliminating these vulnerable waiting phases. Patients will feel more empowered to get consultations and results and interventions at a pace they control.

We won’t be having patients come into offices. A layer of healthcare will emerge that’s a lot like interacting with Amazon. Whether or not a human is on the other side won’t matter. Drugs will be shipped to you by Uber.

—Josh Makower

New Enterprise Associates

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