Paramedics are leaders who accept hardships and responsibility. Their excellent judgment and know how in decision prioritization gives them an edge in establishing patients rapport so as to act in the best interest of the patient. In other words, paramedics give hope to those who need it desperately; they save lives. They are people with good medical knowledge. (Dick W. F., 2003 pp. 35–37.)
There have been many cases of declining paramedic care to patients and consultancy services for doctors. More often than not, complaints have floated that hospitals are ignoring their patient’s needs and they are getting the wrong medication. This is attributed to high mortality rate among patients with serious conditions like heart diseases, kidney failures or merely high stress levels. (Nancy Evans, 2009)
Aware of this problems and driven by a passion to create ethical professionals who can save lives, I decided to come up with a business that will offer pre- hospital counseling, recommend medication for patients and also educate physicians on how to handle patients with different needs. I also thought of simplifying the complex process of license acquisition for paramedics by offering it in my online business. People will be able to buy a page and host it as theirs and offer services as individuals. The credibility I will gain as a business, which is to be determined by those I will sell pages to will also work for or against their new businesses. At a point I am planning to advance from offering the advice to clinical doctors to a paramedic consultant worldwide.
The good thing with online service is that it will be accessed worldwide and at my comfort base, I can save lives in the extreme opposite end.
The emerging trends in the field have made it possible to have mobile paramedics, online paramedics and hospital based paramedics. The excellent idea of online paramedics is welcome; however, it comes with its own challenges which must be addressed. It will mean that some established paramedics will be forced out of business as they struggle to cope with the new technology. Working under a supervisor can also prove add and this will bring factions in the whole field making it hard for efficient delivery of services to customers. Where different experts feel that they have different special qualifications, it will always delay decision making as each and every wants his/her opinion to be considered. (Bell, G., Hindley, N., Rajiyah, G. & Rosser, R. 1990, pp. 154-162)
The enrolment for certified paramedics is limited making it difficult for delivery of services to all parts effectively. After having spent more than six years in study and requiring two or more years in the field so as to get the license, I have seen it good to come up with a business which will bring together both the licensed and the unlicensed to share ideas and give aid to patients. The increasing cases of clinical doctors negligence has prompted this measure, one which will likely solve the problem of mistaken diagnosis and establish the use of newest technology in fighting diseases. Through the business, even doctors will have a forum to study and ask questions regarding patient interaction and medicinal administration.
Again, with the increased number of outpatient centers, patients will need information at the click of a button regarding their conditions. My business will be fitting in a society where every one is a ‘doctor’ who needs advice before administering dosage on a patient. As said earlier it will be information hub for matters regarding clinical matters. Qualified applicants for web pages will be assimilated to the program only after interviews, tests and various exams. (Sackett, David L; Rosenberg, William M C; Gray, J A Muir; Haynes, R Brian; Richardson, W. Scott, 1996, pp. 71–72.)
The pooling of all forms of paramedic specialists into a single community will create a source of information for patients and doctors to effectively handle their conditions. The website will have various links directing a paramedic to different information regarding the type of emergency at hand. The site will have indexes with respect to the level of skill a particular paramedic has i.e. Common technician skills, advanced technician skills and/or advanced paramedic skill, emergency issues like breathing and airway management, circulation and cardiac monitoring, drug administration among others and a dropdown list leading to various procedure pertaining the emergency in question.
It’s a long-term goal that the site will expand by selling license rights to qualified paramedic professionals to input quality information on various procedures, maintain and market their sub-sites world-wide.
Assumptions and constraints
Running a website is expensive. However, the cost of buying a domain has remained within reach for business entities hence a plus for my business. The online paramedic consulting center will buy its own domain so as to remain free of spam and malicious change of content by unknown people. As a starting move, I will buy fewer bites hoping to reach a smaller area and then later expand as per the response I will get. Through liaison with other established paramedics, I will amass the much required knowledge on what services to offer in my business. As at now I have divisions such as common technician skills, advanced technician skills and/or advanced paramedic skill, emergency issues like breathing and airway management, circulation and cardiac monitoring, drug administration among others and a dropdown list leading to various procedures as pertaining the emergency in question.
The major assumption in coming up with this business is that internet charges will not go high than I can manage as a new entity dealing with complex issues of medicine. Them remaining constant will give me a chance to research and enroll in others to gain experience as I run mine too.
The assumption that not licensing for paramedics will not remain as low as it is now so that many qualified people can join the growing website will depend on the governments ability to liaise with other countries to pass medical bills which favor licensing and recognition of qualified doctors. Lastly, the governments’ efforts to make it possible for everyone to access technology is a major boost as most of the patients who need these services are in the marginalized areas. It’s my hope that the efforts to come up with outpatient facilities will continue as that will pose a greater need for consultancy services from my business.
Being a pioneer in the field, I am bound to get all the attention needed from authorities and hospitals in regard to their problems with patients and medicine technicalities. (“Tactical Paramedic Operations”. Retrieved June 2011 at http://www.srpmicnsn.gov/community/fire/Welcome/Salt%20River%20Fire%20Dept%20SOGs/209.03%20-%20TACTICAL%20PARAMEDIC%20OPERATIONS.pdf)
Again this new trend of online paramedic will be met by challenges of trust and licensing. The world today is full of counterfeit products. A malicious company would come up with the same services, knowing very well that they are not qualified so as to reap the many benefits there are. To fight such companies, stringent measures which translate to high cost on part of the business will need to be put in place. A powerful online monitoring device and a unique code for the business should be developed. (Wilson, R.M., Runciman, W. B. & Gibberd, R. W., 1995 pp.
A thorough scrutiny of qualification by the concerned authorities prior to licensing of such a business may delay the start of operations hence affecting the achievement of set goals. At such a time, a more organized business entity might come up and go ahead to command a large market segment to the disadvantage of this new business. Customers who are not connected to the internet or are technologically illiterate will not benefit from the system. Even as the business comes up, the large target is cities and suburbs were the service is not as highly needed. Even for those with internet, there are medical terms and conditions which need to be explained by illustrations face to face. Therefore that’s another area of challenge to the new online business.
The site will give an avenue for students and patients as well as established doctors a chance to ask questions regarding the field. Through discussions, improvements in the field will be communicated and implemented for better services and growth. (Ramon Z. Shaban, 2004)
- Home based office or a rented premise office
- Mac Computers or Microsoft Computers
- Mobile phones
I considered an independent office or my own residence.
1.1 Home based office
Advantages of home based office
- No extra rent expense
- Flexibility to work on many activities through-out the day.
- Clients will not feel free to do face to face consultations if need be.
- There is problem of space for expansion.
1.2 Outside independent premise.
- There is space for expansion
- Clients can come in for consultations freely
- It can host as many equipment as possible for the business
- High cost in renting a business premise
- The place possess a high risk of vandalism
- Any lack of power or other important facilities in the rented house means extra expense on the business.
COSTS: Electricity, security, location and internet availability considered, renting a premise will cost around $500 per month. Costs of cleaning and other office miscellaneous will amount to $20 per day. In total per month, I will need $1100 to operate a rented premise. In my house I will cut this cost by 90% to $110 as I will pay for internet only.
RISK: At my place, incase of any theft I will lose even my personal property. If the government recognizes that I am operating without a license from home, I can be sentenced to imprisonment and my property taken. Rented office is no better as lack of insurance means that in the event of fire of theft, the owner can not replace your property.
- Web pages can be accessed fast and are well visible.
- They can store large amounts of data due to their large hard disks.
- Different experts in different locations of the globe can engage in a meeting from their offices, teleconferencing. This is because it combines audio and visual.
- They discriminate against those who can’t see as they can’t read posts or see demos online.
- Computer break down can mean that it’s the end of its life especially if no one is able to repair it. If operated by people who do not know what they are doing, they can be permanently damaged.
- Crushing of computers can lead to loss of important data.
- They need frequent software updates which sometimes are hard to get. Some of these software’s need trained people who may not be available.
COSTS: Macs are the best computers in the market as they are not easily affected by viruses. They also combine a wide range of software’s as compared to Microsoft computers. One Mac will approximately cost $800 and its software’s about $300 making it a total of $1100. A Microsoft computer will go for approximately $400 with all software’s intact. A starting office will need four computers, one to act as server, one for reception, and the other two for professional experts. If I am to opt for Mac then I will need a total of $4400 while for Microsoft it will be $1600
RISKS: they pose the risk of making professionals zombies and antisocial. As they sit and offer their services at the comfort of their offices, paramedics may forget the very vital element of customer rapport.
3.1 Mobile phones
- Display screen is too small to read some certain content.
- Not all mobile phones have internet features and those that have the features are expensive.
- They discriminate against those who can’t hear or talk.
COST: Equipping an entire unit with mobile phones will cost a lot. It is so because they are expensive with internet features and need top-up every now and then for operations. It will also need special contract with mobile service providers to get a large bandwidth and subsidized rates for the clients. One mobile phone will go for about $200 and a top-up of $50 daily. I need 20 cells therefore coming to an initial cost of $4000 and $1500 worth of top-up per month.
RISKS: Cells are subject to loss and breakdown according to the way they are handled. They can not carry large amount of data and what they can do is limited. Use of mobile phone has the risk of being traced and information altered.
Online paramedic consulting center will thus operate from a rented promise and use Mac computers rather than mobile phones. It is better to incur a large expense at the start than a lot of repair costs as time goes on.
Timeline for the Idea
The idea will be implemented in four phases of four months each which started a while ago in the month of April.
Phase 1: April to August 2011
Extensive research is going on to establish the needs which have not been addressed by paramedics. It is a tour to establish whether or not online paramedic consulting center is the only of its kind and if not, what new thing am I bringing into the market.
Phase 2: September to December 2011
Having concluded and compiled the research report, I will move around to identify the best locations where I can set an office. It will also be the time when I will look for sponsors to fund my project.
Phase 3: January to April 2012
It will be characterized by interviews for those to work in the business center. The exams and tests will be carried within this time so that efficient employees are identified early. The period will be characterized by acquisition of operations license, purchase of equipment and setting of office for work.
Phase 4: May to September 2012
This last phase will mostly be characterized by agreement of all concerned stakeholders to commence business operations. Extensive campaigns to create awareness through the internet, radio, TVs and newspapers as well as billboards will be the order of this phase.