Google creates Helpouts, a HIPAA compliant video platform that can be used by Physicians & Patients

Google Helpouts is a new video service by Google that connects individuals seeking help with experts via real time online video. Healthcare providers are using the platform to connect with Patients. Helpouts is built on top of Google’s Hangouts platform and is HIPAA compliant.

Google says it was created to provide “real help from real people in real time.” People who offer help through the service are called providers and can be businesses as well as individuals. Providers must pass a screening process in order to qualify as Helpouts providers.

Once approved, providers create and maintain listings that explain their offerings, qualifications, prices and schedules. Payments are made through Google Wallet and pricing is based either per minute, per session, or free. While Google charges 20% of the fees, health-related providers are not yet being charged. Helpouts Providers can be rated at the end of a session by the user.

Google Helpouts’ health providers include those helping with mental health counseling, speech impediments, carpal tunnel and breastfeeding. One Medical Group, a concierge medical practice, is also a provider. Google Ventures led a $30 million funding round for One Medical Group in March earlier this year. One Medical recommends the service to be used for those with colds, allergies, sinus issues, simple infections, UTI’s, rashes and general advice and consultation.

So far Helpouts is limited to about 1000 providers, but Google is accepting requests for invitation.

Source: Google


Mohamed Elawad

Click to view 5 Comments

5 Responses to Google creates Helpouts, a HIPAA compliant video platform that can be used by Physicians & Patients

  1. Andrew Adams December 2, 2013 at 8:29 am #

    I am a Helpout Provider with Google and I believe this will be a great resource to both the patient and the Doctor. I am available for consultancy and I have a Rollabout Video Teleconferencing unit How to guide.

  2. remi lai December 10, 2013 at 8:33 pm #

    I smell murky waters… I’d counsel that patients should still physically see their primary doctor given standard precautions should a condition worsen. But I suppose I am interested in this medium for caring for patients…

  3. carol December 18, 2013 at 10:00 pm #

    How much does this cost?

  4. Dr. Keely Kolmes December 30, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

    I am a psychologist. It is a violation of all mental health ethics codes (psychologists, social workers, and marriage and family therapists) to ask current patients for a testimonial or review. I understand that Google Helpouts have people rate the session after it is over. Might Google consider disabling this feature to make it more ethically compatible with mental health professionals who want to use it and our ethical requirements?

    Thank you.

    Keely Kolmes

Leave a Reply