Interacting with Industry On Your Terms | The inner workings of a true Physicians’ Network

Let’s not beat around the bush here. You have questions. If you’re a physician, you likely have hesitations as well. We’ve seen it all and heard it all and we’ve lived to blog about it; that faint air of recoil when a medical professional is faced with the decision to interact with a venture backed, privately held company like The Rounds.

There is a litany of questions we get on a regular basis. Most of them look like this:

“Seriously. What is The Rounds? Why should I trust you?

To address the first part of that question, for all intents and purposes The Rounds is a start-up. (If you want to know more about how we started and why, check out this post or read our About Us section.) But we are different for a bunch of reasons; not the least of which is that most people can’t seem to figure out how we keep our promises of being free for physicians to use, free for physicians to access medical information and experts and free from industry and pharmaceutical influence.

This brings us to the second part of the question. In essence, it boils down to: “How can I trust a company to be my physician network if I can’t even understand how they make money?”

Fair enough. It’s not like we have a website that sells shoes or pottery. We don’t sell memberships or users subscriptions. We also don’t sell traditional style digital ads or leaderboards or anything else like that.

We know that makes us the black sheep of the Internet, especially when it comes to digital health and communications platforms. Physicians (and those who represent them) are used to a) paying for things and b) being bombarded by passive industry advertisements every time they turn around.

They are also used to using networks that don’t guarantee a physician-only audience — like Twitter, Facebook and, even email list serves.

So it doesn’t surprise us that the community of Canadian physicians has a hard time understanding what The Rounds is all about and how we continue to be successful.

As such, here are some of the assumptions we hear:

We must be doing something shady like selling physician’s personal info
There must be a loophole that opens physicians up to professional misconduct by way of privacy violations when they’re using The Rounds
We must be handing over profile information to pharmaceutical companies

Our reply? Nope. None of the above.

There’s a reason thousands of Canada’s physicians trust us to be their network on their terms. Sure, we offer secure groups for hospitals and clinics to use to communicate, we bring in peer reviewed content, we offer physicians a way to create a positive digital footprint, we connect physicians from coast to coast and tons more.

The real reason we are trusted by thousands of physicians is that not one of those assumptions is true. Not one.

We’re your physician only network on your terms. Plain and simple.

We know that physicians need to interact with industry on some level in order to keep up with the newest options and advancements, interactions and recalls. How do we know that? You’ve told us so. We interviewed hundreds and hundreds of practicing Canadian physicians before launching The Rounds and before coming up with our current business model.

What we also know is that as physicians, you don’t like industry to be heavy handed, in your face or, worse yet, taking up your valuable time.

That’s why on The Rounds you decide how to spend your time; who to engage with, and how to engage with them — passively, actively or somewhere between the two.

Like we said, it’s your network, on your terms.

Does this mean there is an industry presence in The Rounds? Yes. It does.

As much as physicians as a group tend to have an acrimonious relationship with pharmaceutical companies, there’s an understanding and acceptance that educational information about the actual drugs themselves is 100% necessary. We give industry access to provide physicians with that type of educational content. Full stop. That’s how it works.

We vet every brand. We interview them to establish a ‘good fit’ as much as they interview us for the same reasons. We only let industry into the network if they provide you valuable, peer-reviewed and researched content. (And yes, we’re friends with the fine folks over at PAAB). We run each industry post by our Medical Advisory Board made up of practicing physicians from across Canada.

And even once that content is in there, it’s entirely up to each individual physician to interact with or seek out that industry info.

The best part about it is that unlike a banner or pop-up ads in a digital journal or magazine, the community on The Rounds permits physicians to ask questions directly of industry, anonymously and without compromising integrity.

It’s a great thing. And we can confidently say we’re the only ones doing it this way. In fact, we’re so confident, our CEO Blair Ryan recently addressed the members on The Rounds with a post outlining exactly how industry fits into our business model and it was met with extremely high praise. (If you aren’t already a member on The Rounds, that link will simply lead you to our home page, where you can register for an account.)

We know trust is a big deal. We know it isn’t earned easily or quickly in the digital environment. But three years as Canada’s trusted leader in safe, secure, physician collaboration and we have no problems answering your questions and addressing your hesitations face on. After all, we’re here for you.

If you’d like to know more, please feel free to reach out at info@TheRounds.com