The Doc2Doc Study

(The Physician to Physician Online Collaborative Care Study)

The first study of its kind to investigate the value and efficacy of electronically enhanced communication between primary care and specialist physicians using a secure, web-based application.


Time pressures, costs and administrative burdens have been increasing for physicians at a time when reimbursement has been shrinking.

Patients are becoming more sophisticated and more complex, requiring increased access to specialists. Medical care has become fragmented with less communication than ever between busy care providers. To address these issues, MedUnison has created a software solution called DocSynergyTM. DocSynergyTM is a web-based software application that was created by physicians to enhance communication and collaboration between medical care providers. The system utilizes store-and-forward telemedicine technology to allow primary care physicians and their office staff to exchange patient information with specialist physicians and their office staff asynchronously, securely, and at their convenience. As MedUnison describes DocSynergyTM:

  • No more phone tag or pulling someone out of a busy clinic to ask a question or to give the background on a patient referral. A "curbside" consult is now a "webside" consult.
  • Primary care office staff can use DocSynergyTM to initiate and track patient referrals, minimizing the number of "dropped balls" and ensuring that patients get timely access to specialty care.
  • Specialty office staff can receive referral requests, manage the receipt of required information and authorizations, and notify the PCP of scheduled visit dates.
  • All parties can better manage their workflows and monitor their business. DocSynergyTM has been in use since 2001 in the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, allowing prison physicians to perform asynchronous online consults and referrals with OU specialists in Oklahoma City.
  • With almost 2000 online consultations completed, use of the system has resulted in greater access to specialty care, improved communications about complex cases, and fewer repeated labs and imaging studies. In short, the right patient arrives at the right time with the right work-up.


DocSynergyTM is a web-based application created by MedUnison, L.L.C.. of Oklahoma City.

The application resides on a secure, HIPAA compliant server through which physicians are able to perform informal ("online") consults with colleagues and arrange referrals between their offices. DocSynergyTM utilizes 128-bit encryption and is accessible from any computer with Internet Explorer and an internet connection. There is no other hardware or software to purchase or install.

Study Design

The Doc2Doc Study is a prospective, randomized, controlled trial designed specifically to determine the impact of the DocSynergyTM application on the quality and cost of outpatient care delivery in northeastern Oklahoma. The study results will also assist in developing an overall value model for store and forward telemedicine technology and refine the existing pricing and reimbursement models to reflect this value. Participants will include primary care and specialist physicians from northeastern Oklahoma. Healthcare providers will be reimbursed for their participation in the study and the DocSynergyTM software will be provided at no cost to the participants. We are seeking:

  • Sixteen to twenty primary care practices with at least 1 physician willing to participate in the study
  • Specialist physicians of all types who are interested in connecting their offices electronically to their referring physicians

If you are interested in participating in this study, please contact the Study Coordinator at (918) 639-5353 or you may use our online contact form.


The Doc2Doc Study is a two-year study supported by the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST), MedUnison, L.L.C., and the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is the Doc2Doc Study?

A: The Doc2Doc Study is a randomized controlled trial designed to determine whether the use of an online collaboration tool will improve the efficiency and timeliness of patient referrals to specialty care in northeastern Oklahoma.

Q: Who is conducting the Doc2Doc Study?

A: The Doc2Doc study is being conducted by a public-private partnership consisting of the University of Oklahoma, MedUnison, L.L.C., and Nephrology Associates of Tulsa.

Q: How is this study designed?

A: As a randomized controlled trial with two main phases. Phase I will involve referral and scheduling clerks only. Phase II will involve the physicians.

Q: Who is paying for this study?

A: This study is funded by an OARS award for project number AR 5.1-026 from the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology, the University of Oklahoma, and MedUnison, L.L.C.

More FAQs

Study support is also provided by faculty members and staff of the Center for Information Technology Leadership (CITL), Boston, MA.


David Kendrick, MD, MPH Principal Investigator Chief Medical Officer of MedUnison, Fellow, Center for IT Leadership, Partners Healthcare and Harvard Medical School

Douglas Schram, MD Co-investigator Nephrology Associates, Inc., Tulsa

John Studebaker, MD, MS Co-investigator University of Oklahoma College of Medicine

Andrew Marshall Study Coordinator