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Interview: Zesty's Lloyd Price on the new trend for booking Healthcare appointments online

We caught up with Lloyd Price, the founder of Zesty, to run us through the services offered by this startup and what it aims to change in the way we interact with health professionals.

What is Zesty and how do you help consumers?

Zesty is an online healthcare marketplace, a search engine for health care appointments if you look at it another way. We are trying to solve the problem of booking available appointments online 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Our vision is to make booking a dentist, hygienist, private doctor, physiotherapist, osteopath, chiropractor as easy as booking a flight, hotel or restaurant online.

What NHS services are available to book healthcare appointments online?

Choose and Book (opens in new tab) is the national UK electronic referral service giving patients the choice of which hospital or clinic to attend in their Primary Care Trust and the choice of time and date for their 1st scheduled outpatient appointment. When your local GP diagnoses you need an appointment to see a specialist, the Choose & Book database shows your doctor the hospitals and clinics available in your local area to provide your treatment. If you have your diary or calendar with you and have a preference for which hospital or clinic you would like to be seen at, you may be able to book your first outpatient appointment before you leave your GP's surgery. If your doctor can find a time and date you prefer, they will be able to confirm the place, date and time of your appointment straight away by accessing the Choose and Book website.

What are you doing that no one else is doing? (opens in new tab) offers a fast, easy to use and convenient way to book healthcare appointments on your smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop 24 hours a day. Users can search by location, read ratings and reviews, choose an available appointment and then book online in less than one minute.

How can technology professionals help improve access to Healthcare appointments online?

By volunteering their services at an NHS Hack Day. The first NHS Hack Day was held back in May 2012 and brought together an eclectic mix of Doctors, developers, designers and healthcare professionals in London. Dr. Carl Reynolds, NHS Hack Day organiser, described the first event as a forum for "geeks who love the NHS and want to spend the weekend working together on software that promotes health". Moving into the summer of 2013, NHS Hack Days have been designed as weekend events for fun loving geeks to disrupt services in the health space and solve problems whilst enjoying the support of established technology leaders and health care experts.

Why is it so important to book healthcare appointments online?

AXA PPP Healthcare has warned Britons are too stiff upper lip and stoical about their own health as a result of their "Little Big Things" campaign designed to increase the public's awareness of cancer. Brits appear to be delaying booking medical appointments and reporting unusual symptoms to their GP in favour of a wait-and-see approach.

Feedback from over 2,000 adults across the UK and highlighted the desperate need for Brits to take their healthcare more seriously and book an appointment to see a doctor instead of waiting to see if the condition develops into something serious. 61 per cent of adults surveyed admitted they had delayed making an appointment with their local GP after they noticed something unusual with their bodies.