Christopher Mock, like many people, don’t like the high costs of medical care. But unlike many people, Mock decided to do something about it. The Frisco resident created an app called Me 1st Medical, which connects residents to low cost high quality healthcare by helping them search for medical services based on the price they can afford. Below, Mock talks about his idea he hopes will make a big difference.
Where did you grow up and go to school?
I was born in Houston, grew up in Plano and graduated from Plano East.
What do you do for a living?
I own Big Frog Custom T-Shirts & More of Frisco. We have been open since early 2018. Before that I worked in wireless for 11 years and commercial electrical construction for three years.
What led to you coming up with the idea for Me 1st Medical?
It’s based on my own family’s experience with medical billing and seeing a need for a less adversarial solution to the problem of rising healthcare prices. I started by asking the question: If I had to fix this without politics (basically, without making an opponent out of half of the country), what would I do? Call me naive, but I was convinced that there was just enough common ground on the subject to create something that we all could get behind. Everybody wants low-cost healthcare; and a plan to provide that is only good if it can be domestically-implemented.
How does it work?
Our patent-pending system/method allows users to search for medical procedures by name and location. The patient can then see the full cost of said procedure based on cash prices, which are often lower than your insurance co-pay. They can then book and pay for the procedure, which notifies the medical facility with a voucher and allows them to work out appointment times with patients. By putting “Me 1st,” I am able to take control of the cost aspect of my healthcare. Insurance is still relevant for reimbursement if the policy allows, so the question changes from “How much will I have to pay later?” to “How much will I be getting back?”
Have you heard of any success stories so far?
We are pre-launch, but the concept is based on the successes of this concept. My wife needed a surgery, which would have cost us $1,780 even with our top-tier PPO insurance. An amazing doctor using a cash-only model performed the surgery for only $250.
What all did you do to create Me 1st Medical?
I started by drawing out and scrutinizing the plans. Early versions included a volume-based brick-and-mortar model, and pairing with universities to work out deals with testing facilities to allow customers to receive free healthcare in exchange for study participation. I ultimately landed where I did for the same reason I started looking for a solution: a good idea must be qualified by ease of implementation (and we will constantly improve post-launch). Next, I drove for Uber on weekends to self-fund the alpha version and cover the intellectual property costs. I interviewed 20-plus app developers before finding the right match. I spoke to doctors and potential users and applied their feedback to what we created. Once the app was built and the IP was in place, we launched a crowdfunding campaign (indiegogo.com/projects/me-1st-medical/x/20740477#/) to help us get the word out on a global platform and hopefully raise a little seed capital.
How long of a process was that?
Almost a year.
Have you developed any other apps?
No. There is literally no reason this should have come from me.
What do you do in your spare time?
If I’m not working, I belong to my wife and daughters. My wife Kelly has been incredibly supportive and understanding throughout this whole process, and I make it a point to spend as much time as I can with them when I’m not working.
Favorite thing to do in Frisco?
I really love being the T-shirt guy here. I have the best customers in the world, and I love seeing their ideas and being a part of all the important life events for which they want a shirt printed. My 5-year-old daughter and I love going to the Texas Legends games. People like Malcolm Farmer and Lauren Vanek within that organization do an amazing job making sure the whole family has a great time. I enjoy being a part of game-changing events like Code Launch. Also, the Thursday Morning meetings at the Chamber of Commerce are a highlight of my week.