Launching with Silly Bugs
We launched Clinnect to a small group of test customers with a few small bugs that our first user encountered right away. What does Clinnect do for this group of primary care providers and specialists?
In the intro Jonathan discusses the fall detection used in his Apple watch, if you are interested in learning more about this feature or how to turn it on then check out this link:
Since recording this episode Angela has actually achieved the 10,000 step mark many times according to her Suunto 3 watch. She is still trying to get evening walks in.
Surprisingly Angela does not spew random statistics this episode, so there was not much to fact check.
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Produced by Jonathan Bowers and Angela Hapke
Music by Andrew Codeman (CC BY 3.0)
[00:00:00] Angela: This is fun.
[00:00:03] Jonathan: That's how you that's. I think that's, um, like journalist broadcaster thing. Like you just put your face right in the mic and just click your tongue.
[00:00:14] Angela: You have no idea.
[00:00:16]Jonathan: I honestly have no idea.
[00:00:17] Angela: Yeah, I know. You can tell
[00:00:20]Jonathan: Hi, I'm Jonathan Bowers. I am a software developer and uh, Oh, I, uh, I fell down the stairs.
[00:00:28]I had Zach in my hand and it scared me
[00:00:30] Angela: He's okay?
[00:00:31] Jonathan: He's okay. Everyone's okay. I have a little bit of rug burn on my, uh, on my elbow, but I'm fine. Just a little bit of a bruised ego. And I don't understand how I've slipped down the stairs. Like I'm pretty cautious, not cautious, but like I don't, I don't fall down the stairs ever.
[00:00:46] Like the first time I've done that.
[00:00:48] Angela: That's why it's called an accident.
[00:00:50] Jonathan: Yeah, I guess. So anyways, I was impressed with the Apple Watch's ability to detect the fall and it suggested that I call 911
[00:00:57] Angela: I love that. why don't we have Apple watches on all our old people?
[00:01:01] Jonathan: I don't know.
[00:01:02] Super cool.
[00:01:03] Angela: That is cool.
[00:01:05]So my name is Angela Hapke, and I am the CEO of Central Referral Solutions and speaking about smartwatches, I got Suunto Watch for Mother's Day and I am yet to hit 10,000 steps a day
[00:01:24]You have to go for walks in the evening. You have to deliberately go and get steps.
[00:01:29] Jonathan, I do. I go for freaking walks in the evening. It just, it adds about like three or 4,000 steps, but I'm just still not getting enough.
[00:01:44]Jonathan: I had one day when I was legitimately less than 500 steps for the entire day. I think I was sick.
[00:01:53] Angela: I was going to say, were you in bed all day?
[00:01:55] Jonathan: I was in bed all day.
[00:01:56] Angela: Yeah. That's why he was sick.
[00:01:59] Jonathan: I thought, for sure, just casual, like just ambient walking. I would have picked up some extras more than 500 steps, but Nope.
[00:02:08] Angela: that's. That's amazing.
[00:02:11] Jonathan: Ambient walking.
[00:02:12] Angela: Ambient walking.
[00:02:14]Clinnect is launched
[00:02:14] Jonathan: Okay so we've launched Clinnect uh how do you spell how do you spell that how do you spell Clinnect ?
[00:02:21] Angela: C L I nope
[00:02:25] Jonathan: That's right.
[00:02:26] Angela: it is sorry. I'm like my brain somewhere else. And I thought, uh,
[00:02:31] C L I N N E C T
[00:02:35] Jonathan: Clinnect it's like clinic and connect smushed together.
[00:02:39] Angela: You got it.
[00:02:40]We launched it last week.
[00:02:43] Jonathan: Not a full launch, a soft launch.
[00:02:46] Angela: Sure a product like ours, I'm not sure launches largely easily. It's it is more of a, it is more of an iterative launch. So we just, we brought on her first umm users on Friday so many, many years ago, I I've, I've dreamed about this.
[00:03:09] Like I have dreamed about this for many years. I've dreamt about being the CEO of a startup, launching a product. And when I dreamed about this, the images that were in my mind were. We, you know, we would, I would be in an office with a team and there would be high fives that day champagne, and we would be celebrating.
[00:03:40] And I launched on Friday sitting alone in my basement.
[00:03:49] And there was nobody, but we need high five because way too early in the day to drink shopping by myself. So,
[00:04:00] Jonathan: That sounds like that makes me sad.
[00:04:04] Angela: but it's actually, so. It didn't make me sad because at the end of the day is still like, the dream is still there. Like the idea, we still did something incredible and amazing, but I think it's also indicative of many things I've been reflecting on recently. Around this, this dream and what I thought that it looked like 10 years ago and what it actually looks like in reality now is I always thought I would have time to lean into these amazing pieces of the business, uh, and take my time and be thoughtful and meaningful around all these decisions and put effort and just all this additional time.
[00:04:54] Leading up to the launch. I had my kids home 24 seven. There was no additional extra time or energy because I was exhausted to lean into these things. Like I was sure I was going to have this beautiful marketing website up to showcase the product and launch it. And I thought, Oh, I'm going to be so meaningful.
[00:05:20] And the people that I reach out to and talk about this with, and it just, there was, there's just no time. And, and COVID like, talk about a time to launch a product. This is crazy. And so all those things. And so as soon as I let go of that ridiculous dream that I had 10 years ago and went well, that was nice.
[00:05:42] That was cute. That you had that dream and that was a fun thing to focus on and it allowed you to get here. Reality looks very different and that's okay because at the end of the day, we're still doing what we said that we would do. And it's still important.
[00:05:57]What does Clinnect Actually Do?
[00:05:57]Jonathan: What's the thing that we're doing. What does Clinnect do? It's in healthcare, but what is ultimately boil it down to a couple of sentences or a short paragraph? What is Clinnect?
[00:06:12]Angela: Clinnect was built out of a need for patient referrals from your family doctor through to a specialist to be tracked and confirmed in a way that they hadn't been before.
[00:06:31] Because far too often, we rely on fax machines to do those referrals, sending and receiving. And we figured that we could create, uh, an easy, simple solution that was far more secure that allowed, um, that patient referral to be sent to the most appropriate provider. Oh, while in the background building meaningful data for your community and in demand around a specific specialties and things like that. But at it's very bare bones. It is a very simple, easy way to send a referral from a primary care provider through to a specialist for patients needing to see any type of specialist that is not sent through a fax machine.
[00:07:31] Jonathan: And so how so? How has the lunch gone? So it's, it's a soft, I wouldn't even say it's a soft launch. It's a private launch.
[00:07:39] Angela: Yeah, actually, that's a good way of putting it because we only allowed the users on that we wanted to start with.
[00:07:46] Jonathan: But we did launch like we did, we do have, we do have users in they're using, are they using the software or have they just created accounts?
[00:07:56] Angela: They've just created accounts and are taking a poke around right now. Today, I'm connecting with, uh, the first person that will be creating referrals to be sent through and received. So that's exciting.
[00:08:11] Jonathan: That is exciting. And how has it gone? so? It wasn't as, uh, as exciting or as, high fives and Champaign, as you might've thought we didn't have a, we didn't have a chocolate fountain.
[00:08:22] Angela: I can do those are so weird and gross.
[00:08:26] Jonathan: Especially now, could you imagine having a chocolate fountain.
[00:08:29] Angela: Everybody there would be caution tape around it now.
[00:08:33] Because it was a private launch, it went, it went pretty good. We were able to handle the users. There was a couple of bugs that came up, but we were able to, and your team was able to address them pretty quickly. We did have a couple, uh, things happen that we thought. Well, that probably won't happen. And we kind of pushed in design and development till later that we've now had to say, Oh, wait a minute.
[00:09:00] We got to put a priority around that, which has been, which was just kind of humbling in the hilarious,
[00:09:07] Jonathan: It's always, it always goes that way. We plan for the things we think, okay, these are the errors that users are going to encounter. Like, these are the kinds of things that users are gonna stumble on. So we need to fix those things and then they never do. But then the things that we think, Oh, no, one's going to do this, and if they do, there's only 10 users so far, so it's not going to be that bad. But then the first user, the first time hits the one thing or the two things that we deliberately pushed to the bottom of the pile.
[00:09:33]Launching with a Few Small Bugs
[00:09:33] Angela: That's exactly what happened. It was our first user and she, she, she, uh, yeah, she did something that we were like, it probably won't happen. Oops. It did.
[00:09:45] We can, I mean, we can talk about what that was like. We.
[00:09:48] can we,
[00:09:49] Jonathan: sure. I mean, there's nothing as long as we're not disclosing who it is. I think that's
[00:09:53] Angela: so our first user, we thought, well, they won't go into the same web page and register themselves more than once. So, and correct, correct my language around this, Jonathan, but, uh, what we, what we did, what we didn't do was like a system check to see if that user already exists in the system, because we just thought they would go in once register once and then, and then just log in after that was the very first use that we got on registered herself four
[00:10:24] Jonathan: Oh, I know. And it's an easy, it's such an easy thing. It's such an easy thing to fix. I don't even sure why we didn't fix it to be honest.
[00:10:33] Angela: Well, isn't that the hilarious part is, yeah. Like as soon as I talked to your team about it, they were like, Oh, okay. So let's just fix that. And then it was fixed right away. But our poor first user was like, I don't see everything that I'm supposed to be seeing. And I'm like, huh, well, let's take a look into that.
[00:10:51] And then we discovered it was like, well, she's actually registered four times.
[00:10:54] Yeah, so that was kind of a funny one. And then we, and then, yeah, we had some funny things around, um, case sensitivity for emails and which is one of those things that we probably should have.
[00:11:07] Jonathan: Yup. Yup. Often all things that should have been done, because they're really easy to do.
[00:11:14] Angela: Yeah. Yeah. So.
[00:11:16] Jonathan: But, it's, it's a little bit of, uh, of competing priorities. Like there's, there's so much other things to do that are just so important, right? Like we need to have encryption working. We need to have all of these features that the people need to be able to use.
[00:11:32] Um, and so. These things are up there. Easy. We can just do that last minute, but then we never get to them and they creep their way in. And then we think, okay, well we didn't fix those things. It's live. No one's going to hit those. We'll fix them in a bit. Um, but
[00:11:47] Angela: they did my first users, the, Oh well, and I think, and I am not sure how to, how to say this, but Clinnect is an easy platform to use. What we've created is a digital health application that is so easily, integrated into their, their systems.
[00:12:11] Like you literally take two minutes to sign up, whereas like most doctor's offices in MOAs are used to software that takes like massive, like many days to onboard. Like, so for example, like your, your EMR or your emergency, your electronic medical records, there's a team that comes out.
[00:12:34] Jonathan: Oh, wow.
[00:12:35] Angela: I mean, okay. Maybe, maybe just one person, but there's a person that comes out that is like an implementation specialist usually.
[00:12:43] And they will onboard your office, like in person. And they'll be there testing things for usually like a day or two.
[00:12:52] Jonathan: Oh, wow.
[00:12:53] Angela: Yeah. And I mean, EMR is, are big and heavy and, um, but any kind of software that I think about that, you know, a doctor's office uses is typically pretty robust with a complicated ish sign-on process or registration process.
[00:13:16] So it's a lot more handholding Clinnect is like, I sent you a link you signed on in two minutes and then you can send a referral. Like it's that simple. And because it's that simple, I think we were just like, well, it's that simple? what I love about clinic is, um, I'm able to say because literally just two minutes to sign on and you can send a referral it's that easy. And that is a very cool value that we offer.
[00:13:50] Jonathan: It's the, the, the value is that it takes two minutes to sign off.
[00:13:56]Angela: No, it's, it's a, what is it? A lack of barrier, I guess.
[00:14:03] Jonathan: so, okay. So we've launched, we've launched, we've had a few users sign up, um, some, some, uh, a few, a few bumps, a few stumbling blocks. and then soon I think today, some of the users are going to start. You're going to walk a user through sending, sending the first referral
[00:14:22] Angela: Yeah. I'm hoping it's today, if not tomorrow. Yeah. Yeah. It's exciting. I think,
[00:14:30]Jonathan: Why is it exciting? I mean, I get, I get why it's exciting for you,
[00:14:33] Angela: yeah,
[00:14:34] Jonathan: it's, it's, it's the dream realized, right? There's no champagne, there's no fountain of chocolate, but there's still, there's still software that's out there that a real human customer is using. There is, is going to use today. Um, why is that exciting beyond, beyond just the fact that that, you know, exists.
[00:14:57] Angela: So if I take off my founder hat and I put on my like Joe public hat, is that what you
[00:15:01]Digital Health is Pretty Boring
[00:15:01] Jonathan: I guess, so, I mean, why, like, I mean, there's, there's all sorts of reasons why you got into this and wanted to build this. Um, and it's. It's not finished, but, but something is built and that's exciting for sure. That's, that's always exciting when it's full of anxiety of, you know, things going wrong and things have gone wrong, uh, small bumps, but, but it works, um, it's out there.
[00:15:25] So, but what's the, like, what's the, what's the exciting bit now? What are you excited about now? And maybe this is from the point of view of the public.
[00:15:34] Angela: It's so hard to answer. I think because healthcare isn't, especially digital health stuff really isn't that exciting.
[00:15:46] Um, typically healthcare, digital health applications, aren't super exciting. They're not really sexy stuff that comes out and it's not, like rock your world stuff. It's usually fixing something, a systemic issue that we've had for a long time in a really obvious way. And I think that's what this is. The fact that, you know, as a, as a patient, I would go into my doctor and have a, have a referral faxed over to my specialist's office and never hear back as to where I was on a wait list if they ever received it.
[00:16:26] Or if, if, if, if all of these variables Mmm we're fixing all of those, it seems obvious. And I've had this interaction with people. When I tell them about connecting what we're doing, the reaction I get almost all the time is, well, why doesn't this exist yet? So maybe it's not that exciting for the general public.
[00:16:54] And rather it is more well about time
[00:16:59] Cause I'm not sure that I could. I am not sure. I could go out and explain to people what Clinnect is and they'd be like, yes, that is so exciting. It is not exciting for people. It is more of a statement of, well, that just makes a lot of sense. Why the hell haven't we been doing this for a really long time?
[00:17:19]Jonathan: It's a strange, um, that's a strange feeling. I experienced that every now and again, where I think back, like, how do I, how do I excite, um, 16 year old me about the kinds of things that I do now. And I don't, I'm not sure that I could, like, I'm not sure that I could say, Oh, you're going to be spending hours.
[00:17:37] Um, leading a team that is building software to replace fax machines and it's going to be so awesome. 16 year old me is that sounds so
[00:17:49] Angela: So boring.
[00:17:50] Jonathan: boring, but it's, it is exciting because, every day, people are doing, you know, doing their job, trying to go about their day, get, get the things that they need to get done, done, and are stuck using whatever antiquated system or antiquated piece of software that they've inherited through, you know, whatever chain of decision making that led to that. And they're stuck with it and they're just trying to do the best they can. And I'm excited that, even if there's a little bit of joy, even if it's just once, even if it's just, Oh, this is, nice. And then that's it. But now, now they just go about their job.
[00:18:29] Um, much, much more efficiently being able to focus on the things that matter. Um, you know, not spending their time sorting piles of paper.
[00:18:39] Angela: The way that I describe it sometimes too, which some helps people a little bit. And let's be very clear that some of these features do not exist yet in Clinnect, but they are in the pipeline. Um, imagine going to your family physician with an issue he or she says, I think you need to see a specialist. And upon walking out of that office, you receive a text or an email that says.
[00:19:07] Your referral to specialist so, and so has been received. The estimated waiting time is four weeks. We will be in touch with you. Um, and just, just that, just that simple, at least I know I am being taken care of because right now, when we walk out of our physician's offices with our kids that have just been referred to a specialist, We have no idea if that referral was ever received or not.
[00:19:41] And I know a lot of people are terrified to pick up the phone to find out for fear of bothering someone or maybe being put at the bottom of an arbitrary list for bothering someone. Um, but this is like real time trackable referrals. Which yes, we maybe should have been doing for a long time, but haven't, so now, now it's time to, uh, but that's usually when people go, Oh, that would be really cool.
[00:20:10] So maybe, so maybe if we could just insight that little bit of joy once in a while, where you literally get the text that says, Hey, and maybe even further to that, it's now been accepted by specialists. So, and so here it, you know, or even better click here to book an appointment, Things like that. Like, this is not, this is not undoable.
[00:20:35] This is totally doable. I guess what I'm saying.
[00:20:38] Jonathan: and it's not, um, it's not rocket surgery.
[00:20:42]Angela: It's not, it really isn't, but we've been very complacent with, um, the lack of technology and in the healthcare space for a very long time. And that's what that's. I mean, I go back to why I'm excited about this is at the end of the day, we are, we are providing a service that didn't, it didn't exist in this way before I finally get to make an impact for far too long when I was in the system, um, I would be.
[00:21:21] You know, writing, writing decision briefs, um, that were really exciting ideas and projects, and that would just get shelved for years. And there was no sense of change. There was no sense of making that impact. I finally decided that I couldn't sit around and do that anymore.
[00:21:45] And when a group of surgeons came to me and said, we have this really cool idea, I saw a much bigger application for it. Whereas they were just like, this is how it all started. General surgeons and Kamloops just, just wanted one place where all their referrals could come into and they could pull it. This is how this all started.
[00:22:06] That's all they wanted. Could you help us do that? Yeah, I can definitely help you do that. And my guess is you're not the only ones that need that.
[00:22:13]What is Coming Next with Clinnect?
[00:22:13]Jonathan: What are the next steps? Like, what are we, what are we working on next? So you're going to get some referrals happening. What else is happening?
[00:22:19] Angela: So we're going to test the system for referrals just to make sure that everything works. Um, and then we start onboarding, referring providers. So meaning your, primary care providers that refer patients through, that's going to be, that's going to be a, Oh, that's a long process. Um, but we're gonna focus on, um, kind of blasting to them that we're up for functional.
[00:22:48] We're going, please sign up once again. Low barrier to use two minute sign up and you can send your first referral. That's the exciting part. And then we have other specialty groups that are interested in joining two already, which is awesome. So I'm actually thinking we might even have to queue them, which I.
[00:23:12] Never thought that we were actually going to have to have a queue. I always thought we would be like going to them and saying, okay, I think you guys need to get on and then like trying to sell it. But I think we already have . Enough that are interested and it's just, it's the snowball effect. As soon as you get a few on, then everybody sees, how about hopefully how well it's working and we've designed it to scale.
[00:23:35]Because this is based off of a workflow that we've been doing with general surgery. That was not scalable. So we learned, I think we've learned a ton there. And so that's exciting to see.
[00:23:50]Growing the Waitlist
[00:23:50]Jonathan: I'm looking forward to seeing that waitlist grow
[00:23:52] Angela: be careful about calling it a weightless grow because we're in surgery.
[00:23:55] Jonathan: Oh, right. Yeah, no, we don't want our waitlist to grow. we have this really long wait list to get into our software, but it, the goal of our software is to
[00:24:03] Angela: Does it reduce the wait list?
[00:24:05]Jonathan: Can, can Clinnect Clinnect itself?
[00:24:08] Can we use Clinnect to manage our own wait list?
[00:24:12] Angela: Oh, no maybe. In a way that's the way it works though.
[00:24:21] Jonathan: So, okay. Yeah. So our wait list is growing. Your wait-lists are shrinking.