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Trilogy of Comedy Videos Spotlight the Healthcare Industry’s Stubborn Reliance on Pagers, Fax Machines

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“The Pager Menace,” “The Clone Wards” and “Revenge of the Fax” are sponsored by DrFirst and produced by healthcare satirist Zubin Damania, MD

March 16, 2016

ROCKVILLE, Md. — DrFirst, a leading provider of electronic prescribing, secure texting and other SaaS software and services for healthcare, has teamed-up with physician, medical satirist and primary care clinic founder Dr. Zubin Damania to release a series of comedy videos that highlight the healthcare industry’s continued reliance on seemingly antiquated forms of healthcare communication.

Each humorous episode addresses a serious issue—the communication breakdowns that occur throughout hospitals every day and which are often exacerbated by the industry’s stubborn reliance on pagers, faxes and other outdated communication technologies.

The “Doc Vader” trilogy of videos can be accessed at

“It’s the 21st Century and yet we’re still using pagers. It’s as if we’re still trying to practice medicine a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away,” says Damania, a former hospitalist who has produced dozens of satirical healthcare videos under the name of his online alter-ego, ZDoggMD. Damania’s collection of videos have amassed more than 8.5 million views.

Each two- to three-minute video features Doc Vader, played by Damania, as an egotistical, burned-out physician routinely frustrated by roadblocks that impede his efforts to quickly and effectively share patient information with other physicians within the hospital, including his nemesis, O.B. Gyn Kenobi. As a result, Vader often resorts to endless rounds of phone tag, sending overhead pages and tussling with the fax machine—often with hilarious results.

Daminia scripted, shot and produced the three video installments, titled “The Pager Menace,” The Clone Wards” and “Revenge of the Fax.”

“We wanted to create a series of funny videos that capture the frustration doctors experience every day when trying to get in touch with other doctors,” Damania said. “We need to communicate much more efficiently and more effectively in healthcare, and traditional means such as pagers and faxes are simply ill-advised at this point.”

Studies have shown that poor communication is often a root cause of treatment errors and delays that can result in patient harm, adverse events or even death. DrFirst sponsored the project to help shine a light on this particular physician pain-point–and to call attention to Backline®, the company’s HIPAA-compliant, secure texting solution built specifically for healthcare professionals.

Backline® offers the ease of text messaging with colleagues and patients, without the risk of sending protected health information over common, non-secure channels. 

“As a provider of secure texting and care team collaboration software, Zubin’s commentary on this subject really resonated with us,” said Stu Ballatt, vice president of marketing at DrFirst. “Amidst the din of interoperability debates, the need to foster communications interoperability during care-in-progress and care-in-transition frequently gets lost. In a humorous way, the “Doc Vader” series reminds us that secure care collaboration and coordination drives productivity, efficiency and better patient care.”

About DrFirst
DrFirst pioneers healthcare SaaS solutions that inform the doctor-patient point of encounter, optimize provider access to patient information, enhance the doctor’s clinical view of the patient, and improve care delivery and clinical outcomes. Our growth is driven by a commitment to innovation, security and reliability across a wide array of e-medication management and secure communication and collaboration services. We are proud of our track record of service to over 330 EMR/EHR/HIS partners and an extensive network of hospitals, post-acute care facilities, ambulatory practices and pharmacies nationwide.

About Zubin “ZDoggMD” Damania
Zubin Damania, MD, is the founder and CEO of Turntable Health, a primary care clinic in Downtown Las Vegas that was funded by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh. During his 10-year hospitalist career at Stanford, Zubin received clinical teaching awards while maintaining a shadow career performing stand-up comedy for medical audiences worldwide. Under the name ZDoggMD, he produces and stars in music videos, parodies and comedy sketches about contemporary medical issues that have amassed more than 8.5 million views on YouTube. Damania is a frequent public speaker, including at TEDMED, and has been featured in several publications, including The Atlantic, TechCrunch, Huffington Post and The Guardian.
Contact: Wendy Johnson, Media Relations­­­
(301) 231-9510

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