Answering Questions




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    Daniel Ziegler

    When one answers questions for health tap there is generally a countdown in which you are encouraged to answer more questions to win bonus points and thus fabulous prizes. After 4 questions you get a message that reads: answer one more question in the next 12 minutes to get 2x points. You then search for a question, think about it, and answer it in a thoughtful way and then meet another screen that once again says you got 1/5 questions left to get a 2x bonus if you respond in 6 min so you rush off to find an easy question but not wanting to be glib you wind up taking 9 minutes and are now confronted with a window that restrings the carrot just a little further from your reach telling you just 2/5 more questions to get a fabulous bonus. You've now answered 8 questions and get no bonus except whatever bonus was attached to the "waiting the longest" question you selected.

    What I want to know is what is it you think you gain by getting all the answers from me in 1 hour's time rather than 2 hours. Your persistent tease certainly makes for more excitement on a tv game show but did you ever stop to consider that those who actually covet your silly points are the very same doctors that give these truly shitty one sentence answers? Just saying.

    But while I'm at it there is an issue that is a lot more galling and actually erodes your credibility over time, This isn't the first time I've brought it up but each time I confront it I lose just a little more enthusiasm for HealthTap. The problem is the continued omission of basic medical terms in your tag list. I know you don't want to numb their minds with medical jargon but including all medical terms in the tag list just make sense and they're not going to encounter something they don't search for so you're not cluttering anyone's mind who hasn't already heard the term.  They also learn terms quickly when they've been diagnosed with something and we look stupid if they can't find their diagnosis. All you need to do is have someone sit down with a Dorland's dictionary and enter every word into your database. Hell, you guys are the iPhone crowd, you all type like buzz saws. 

    For instance, I recently answered a question for a patient with bradycardia. Guess what? It's not in there. a patient with tendonitis, not in there but you do list patellar tendonitis and Achilles tendonitis - not helpful, the guy has tennis elbow. In fact, there are multiple examples of complex multi-word phrases that define specific problems that are completely irrelevant to someone who is asking about the same problem in a different body region.  If you're gonna list a multiword term you should also list the individual words. Serous Otitis is a common entity that isn't here.

    OK I'm going to leave this last whine even though I have just discovered that you guys have fleshed out the tag terms quite a bit. I remember not being able to find angioedema or trichomonas and now they are both there along with several others. Good work, keep it up and add bradycardia!



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    Why do I often get page that reads

    Cannot Submit Answer At This Time...try again later

    And the only recourse is to leave the page, thus losing the answer

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