HR Tech Interview with Paula Muto, CEO and Founder at UBERDOC

Is health insurance the only employee benefit program that today’s workforce needs? Paula Muto, CEO and Founder at UBERDOC weighs in while taking us through the main challenges that the Covid-19 pandemic has thrown up for employers when it comes to employee care programs:




Tell us a little about yourself Paula…we’d love to hear about the UBERDOC employee benefits platform – how did this idea come about and shape up?

I am a surgeon, from a family of surgeons. I love medicine, but have never liked the fact that patients have so many obstacles when seeking the right care. So I thought, why not let patients find an available doctor or specialist nearby, and make an appointment without a phone call, referral, or insurance hassles, for a single transparent price? Most direct pay services are typically a concierge model, with a higher price and limited access. And that is how UBERDOC came to be. We took the opposite approach: lower the price, guarantee the payment, and increase the access, which now includes both in-person and telemedicine appointments.

HR Technology News: TecHRseries Interview with Lars Hyland, Chief Learning Officer of Totara

It is time for employers to get out of the business of healthcare. Health insurance is the biggest line item after payroll – and even still, health plan costs are expected to rise 5.3% in 2021. Wouldn’t it be great if employers could just focus on their company’s products and innovations, its workplace culture or its core values? UBERDOC for Employers provides employees with priority access to specialists using their health savings accounts (HSAs) and flexible spending accounts (FSAs), thereby alleviating the burden on employers, as well as reducing employer health insurance costs and increasing access to care for employees. It’s an additional, affordable option to complement existing employer health insurance – without violating network arrangements.

What are some of the ways in which you’ve seen businesses’ needs for innovative and evolving employee benefits change, especially in 2020 in light of the pandemic; what are some of the top takeaways you have for 2021?

Complexities that have arisen during the COVID-19 pandemic have shown us, more than ever before, that in many ways the US healthcare system is broken. The time it takes to see a doctor is at an all-time high, creating far more hurdles, delays and headaches than necessary. It’s a broken model in need of improvement as we expand even further into the digital age.

Looking ahead to 2021, healthcare must evolve, and employees need to provide their employees with access to the care they need, when they need it. If employers value employees and their well-being, they will provide better, faster and more affordable access to care – a fundamental need for all, especially in our current climate. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us that we can adapt in ways we didn’t think were possible. Whether attending meetings, learning online, or even seeing your physician, it can and should all be done without the delays or inconveniences of the past.

HR Technology News: Protiviti Named One Of The 2021 ‘Best Workplaces In The Bay Area’ By Fortune And Great…

Can you share a few thoughts on how businesses today are transforming health care and related employee benefit initiatives with better programs?

The expansion of HSAs and FSAs just makes sense, especially in the setting of increased price transparency. Knowing the cost of care empowers employees to make better choices for themselves and for their families. No one likes to be restricted when it comes to their health.

In today’s (remote) work culture; what are some of the top employee benefits that businesses should cater to?

If anything, the pandemic has shown us that nothing is more important than our health. While the global pandemic has created a new lifestyle that has put our work on par with everything else in our life  — families, friends, health, well-being and more — our health still needs to be a priority.

Employers should provide ample options for employees to increase access to care and improve their overall health and well-being. Employer-sponsored health insurance is only the first step in providing comprehensive healthcare benefits to an employee base. HR should provide resources for employees to find the doctors and specialists they need, when they need it, in order to decrease absenteeism and improve employee morale to ultimately create a happier, more productive workforce.

As businesses reshape their work processes and employee cultures and benefits in 2021; what are some best practices you’d suggest they follow – some platforms that come to mind that can enable better initiatives?

Traditional avenues to receiving medical care are outdated and inefficient. Patients often wait weeks to see a doctor or specialist, not including the time spent scheduling appointments or coordinating referrals. These wait times often result in ER visits or inpatient hospital stays. To mitigate these issues and minimize negative effects – such as reduced workplace productivity or higher long-term healthcare costs – employers must look outside their traditional health insurance options.

Increased access to care, as a best practice, should be adopted by employers in 2021. Delays are indicative of the rising need for easier access to specialized care, and improved access can result in improved productivity and employee well-being. Of course, to solve for this problem, we recommend UBERDOC, which reduces cost, improves access to care and respects employees’ privacy and right to choose.

Before we wrap up, we’d love to hear a little about UBERDOC’s employee and company culture

UBERDOC is female founded and fully transparent, with a very open culture that gives everyone a voice and the chance to be heard. As a physician, I am empathetic by nature – and as a surgeon, I have learned that you are only as good as the team around you. I am blessed by brilliant young minds who are not afraid to fail, but not too proud to ask for help.

And lastly, a few of your biggest takeaways and tips on working effectively from anywhere….and adjusting to the new normal.

Communication is the cornerstone for success in any business. How we communicate is what has changed most over the past several months, but fundamentally we still need to complete the same tasks, produce the same results, and manage the same teams. Being together in the same room is how humans interact best, and something that is lacking in our new normal. Ultimately, a hybrid of working remotely and an in-office setting will likely be the most effective and healthiest model in the end.

HR Technology News: TecHRseries Interview with James Norwood, Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer at isolved


UBERDOC is an innovative healthcare platform that connects patients with available board-certified doctors and specialists for in-person and telemedicine appointments at a transparent price.

Paula Muto, M.D., F.A.C.S., is the founder and CEO of UBERDOC, and the owner of the Vein Center at Mutosurgical. A graduate of Amherst College and New York Medical College, Dr. Muto is a fellowship-trained vascular surgeon by specialty and also practices general surgery.

There’s A lot to Uncover From Our Recent Episodes of The SalesStar Podcast: Hear More: