With an idea to bring medical scribe services to
the underserved Southwest Louisiana community, McNeese State University student
Joseph Drinkard won the university division of the 2017 SEED Center Business
Pitch Competition sponsored by the SEED Center Business Incubator.
is the fifth year that the SEED Center has conducted the competition, both to
promote the SEED Center Business Incubator’s benefits and services as well as
encourage entrepreneurship in the local area, according to Adrian Wallace,
executive director of the business incubator.
along with three other division winners, was awarded $2,500 in start up funds provided
by SASOL North America.
graduating in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in music, Drinkard decided to change
course and pursue a career in the medical field. Drinkard, a Louisiana native,
relocated his family to Lake Charles in 2014, where he began coursework as a
biological sciences major at McNeese. After being hired in March 2016 at the
Lake Charles Memorial Hospital to work in the emergency medicine scribe program
as lead scribe, Drinkard first began to develop the idea that would become his
business proposal -- Catalyst Medical Scribe Management (CMSM).
scribes function as personal assistants to physicians, handling their
documentation, clerical and administrative needs throughout the day, according
the physician to focus on practicing medicine and increases efficiency,”
Drinkard says. "So, not only is the physician able to see more patients in a
day, but also most physicians report a higher level of job satisfaction, which
in turn staves off burnout.”
medical scribe position has only been recognized within the last decade, many
hospitals have not yet expanded their medical teams to incorporate the role.
Drinkard’s pitch proposed to fill this gap – his business would specialize in
providing primary care and outpatient scribes recruited and extensively trained
for physicians in Southwest Louisiana.
emergency medicine scribe program there at Lake Charles Memorial was
implemented by Professional Emergency Medicine Management, and soon after I was
hired, I was chosen to lead the program,” he says. "I was able to, in a sense,
overhaul the program, which included writing and implementing new policies and
procedures from scratch. My team and I were able to make the role of a scribe a
crucial gear in the machine that is the emergency department. This success
inspired me to consider our primary care providers and see if they could
benefit from a similar service. The research I found overwhelmingly confirmed
CMSM is more than just a pitch - Catalyst Medical Scribe Management plans to
officially begin offering its services this fall, with Drinkard taking on the
role of CEO.
his success to the SEED Center competition, as well as McNeese assistant professor
of biological science, Dr. Amber Hale, who originally brought the competition
to Drinkard’s attention.
competition, more than anything, really put a seal of approval on the business.
Having an impartial third party not only tell you that your idea is viable, but
also putting resources at your disposal is amazing,” Drinkard says. "It's a
great stepping stone for things to come.”
In the weeks
since winning the competition, Drinkard has moved into the SEED Center’s
Business Incubator and says his days have been filled with meetings. "A lot of
meetings! The business of business can be taxing - but I've found it to be
incredibly interesting and personally rewarding,” he says.
He is also
looking forward to harnessing the talent within the Lake Charles community.
"One of the things that I am most excited about is the fact that we are
literally creating jobs from scratch,” he says. "Medical scribing is considered
to be the gold standard of clinical experience for those who apply to graduate,
medical and allied health programs. Through Catalyst, we have the opportunity
to harness the talents and passions of our science students in a way that sets
them on their highest career trajectories.”
currently accepting applications. Interested individuals can send their cover
letter, resume, and references to firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on
Catalyst Medical Scribe Management, visit www.catalystmsm.com.