In 2007, businessman Cyrus Massoumi and physician Oliver Kharraz teamed up to found ZocDoc.com, a Web service that matches patients with available appointments at doctors' and dentists' offices. It's OpenTable for health care.
Until now, the service was only available to New Yorkers, but on Tuesday, the company announced they were expanding to D.C. "Cue angels singing and birds chirping," the Washington Post responded, "because for anyone who has cold-called dozens of doctors off an insurance provider's list only to be told "Dr. So-and-So is not accepting new patients" each time, ZocDoc.com is a revelation." Indeed, Massoumi allegedly got the idea for the company after spending three days finding a doctor for a ruptured eardrum.
The service is free for patients and costs around $150 a month for physicians (similar to the OpenTable business model). Patients fill in their zip code and insurance provider, and ZocDoc provides a list of available dentist and/or doctor appointments that they can book online. In 2008, the company won the grand prize, and $100,000, at Forbes.com's Boost Your Business competition. The company already offers over 21,000 available appoints in D.C. (300,000 in New York), according to a representative. Want ZocDoc in your city? The company is looking to expand into other major cities, and they're basing their decision on users' votes. The only thing missing is an iPhone app, something OpenTable just released last year.