Monday, September 16

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Patients Like Me

Patients Like Me on Shark Tank

Online Patient Network - Season 5 - Week 1

Patient Network seen on the Shark Tank Show in season 5 premiere
Online Patient Network "Patients Like Me"
on Shark Tank Season 5 Premiere Show
 If there was ever a great idea on the Shark Tank Show that has the potential to changes lives for the better, Patients Like Me is definitely the "One". When I first read ABC's press release for the Season 5 premiere which gives you very little clues who the new contestants are, I assumed Patients Like Me was a new Doctors App to help them stay in contact with their patients. As good of an idea that I imagined, (any App builders out there?) it doesn't even come close to what Patients Like Me could do to help patients in a way unimaginable before the computer age.

Patients Like Me is a social community with over 220,000 registered members all helping each other with a variety of Medical complications. No matter whom you are or what you have been diagnosed with, there's other patients like you going through the same thing. This entire "free" site not only puts you in touch with other patients, it's also a support system for your loved ones to compare notes and make sure you're getting the best treatment.

This niche social site was started by two Brothers Jamie and Ben Heywood who both are Doctors and MIT Graduates, started Patients Like Me after their own brother Stephen was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's Disease. Sure there's lots of information online, but there was no single place where patients and their families could go and discuss their medical condition. According to the Patients Like Me Website, there's now over 2000 medical conditions now covered and over 1 million treatment & symptom reports available. PatientsLikeMe is also starting an Open Research Exchange where researchers, clinicians, academics and patients can interact and develop more improved outcomes by comparing notes in real time.

So how will "Patients Like Me" do inside the Shark Tank?
This is a free members website that makes money from the research conducted on the site. To get Patients Like Me to the level it is today, required Venture Capital Investments from Commerce Net, Omydyar Network, Collaborative Seed & Growth and Invus who already have a stake in the business. How much equity these four venture capital firms control is unknown at this time, but considering how much money has been invested in Patients Like Me to this point, one could assume they already control a high percentage of the business equity.

The Sharks have a History of "not" investing in businesses that already have multiple high level investors involved in the deal which could be considered strike 1. The fact that this is a free site and no way to charge for this service upfront, might be considered strike 2 from an investment stand point. Jamie & Ben are 4 days away from getting major national coverage seen by millions of people that will be watching Shark Tank Season 5 premiere, and yet there's zero reference on the website, Facebook or even Twitter that they will be on the show.

Statistically speaking, whenever a contestant knows they have been chosen to be on Shark Tank and did not take advantage of all this free publicity beforehand, usually means they did not get a deal. In fact, this statistic is batting 1000 which is strike 3 that Patients Like Me most likely will not get a deal.

Deal or no deal, Patients Like Me is an excellent idea which is sure to grow exponentially after the Shark Tank Effect takes hold and makes this website a household name. Just knowing there's someone else out there going through the same thing, and together you can help each other in ways you may of never thought of, can and will make this business a major success in the future.

Patients Like Me Website


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