If you are ill, how much is it worth to have the best medical minds focused on your problem? The answer is probably "priceless," as they say in the commercials-or as much as you can possibly afford.

But money isn't the only obstacle to creating a medical dream team. Finding the best doctors for a given condition takes a lot of research. And once you find them, they are usually spread all over the nation and the world, and getting them in one room is a huge logistical hurdle.

That is, until recently.

In January, two doctors and a technology expert created ExpertConsensus (www.expertconsensus.com), a health advisory firm in New York City that brings together the world's top doctors to provide clients with a second opinion on their conditions. Working with the patient's attending physician, these experts help identify alternative treatments or, in some cases, experimental approaches.

The firm was partly started out under the belief that the nation's current system for delivering medical care is broken, because patients are on their own when it comes to finding second opinions.

"Every patient wonders if he or she is getting the best treatment and they want more opinions," says Dr. Robert C.J. Krasner, chairman of the ExpertConsensus medical advisory board, who maintains a private practice.

"Every patient we have seen, we have been able to help by giving them something the patient or treating physician did not know," adds Dr. Jean-Luc "J.L." Neptune, chief operating officer and a co-founder of ExpertConsensus. "We have been able to give them hope and a new chance for survival or for a better life."

ExpertConsensus does not provide medical treatment directly. It acts as a middleman to provide its clients with more medical expertise. The firm charges $25,000 per project, which includes the cost of researching and rounding up top experts, and coordinating the flow of information between them and a client's physician.

After consulting with a client and his or her doctors, ExpertConsensus uses its proprietary database and the professional connections of its staff to identify up to ten to 15 experts who could address the client's condition. After further screening, the list is reduced to three to five experts.

The experts may have varied backgrounds, according to ExpertConsensus. Some are practicing physicians, while others are researchers, working either independently or with an institution such as a university. The key, according to the firm, is that their peers and the academic community regard them as leaders in their areas of specialty-with the ability to bring cutting-edge treatments to clients.

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