In that time we have worked with literally thousands of patients and while they were each unique and had their own sets of medical concerns and life challenges, they did share one thing in common - they all lived in or near to Ottawa.
In the beginning, that was a necessity. The technology to work with patients remotely simply didn't exist.
I'm thrilled to report that it does now.
For the past few months we've been working with a smartphone app that lets us reach our patients even when they're not sitting in front of us. The app allows us to create customizable and trackable goals that we can monitor remotely (and reach out if we see someone's struggling), and more importantly, the app provides two-way communication - both by way of quick text messages, but also by way of video conferencing, between patients and our office's professionals. While so far we've pretty much only been using the app with our Ottawa based patients, we're about to open our virtual doors and in so doing, use the app to work with anybody, anywhere.
We've designed a 12 week program that will be delivered by our office's registered dietitians to help people with their weight loss and behavioural change goals (and once formally launched, there'll be ongoing support options available once completed). During those 12 weeks people will have regular videoconferences with our RDs and work with them on creating personal goals that are designed to target each individual's specific needs, concerns, and barriers. They will also have access to our RDs by way of the app supported (and both PHIPA and HIPAA compliant) text messaging for quick questions and words of support.
While we will soon offer access to this program to everyone, right now we're looking for 5 volunteers to work through our new program with us and help us iron out the kinks in its delivery. In return for our best efforts to help you achieve your Best Weight, we’re looking for individuals who are comfortable giving us honest feedback on what’s helpful in our program and just as importantly what’s not.
Because the supporting program curriculum is still being developed (videos and articles that will accompany the 12 weeks and serve as offline resources) there is the requirement that those interested own and read my book The Diet Fix: Why Diets Fail and How to Make Yours Work as it will serve in the offline course curriculum's stead. As well, for the beta-testers only, we need to restrict the offer to those with iPhones as we’re still working out some of the issues with the Android operating system.
If you're interested in being considered as a beta-tester, please send us a letter telling us a bit about you and your history with weight loss (please limit the letter to no more than 400 words), and in 2 weeks we'll contact those who our RDs select. We're looking for divergent people and issues and consequently can't simply take the first 5 people who write. That said, if you do write in and you're not selected, we'll be sure to put your name in the queue for when our program formally launches and make sure you’re at the top of the list.
Please send your emails to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We're so excited to be rolling this out!