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The Skin Consult Pushes Beauty Tech To New Levels

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Dr. Sajani Barot knows firsthand the pain of time and money wasted on beauty products that don’t live up to advertising hype. After spending decades suffering from skin trouble, and hundreds of dollars on testing various products — only to find that nothing worked for her particular issues — Dr. Barot felt compelled to act. 

Carrying a Doctorate of Pharmacy degree, Dr. Barot had more experience and know-how than the average beauty product entrepreneur. This particular education and skill set combination sets her company, The Skin Consult, apart from the competition within the crowded skincare market. Dr. Barot has also introduced a healthy dose of cutting-edge technology into her business, making The Skin Consult exceedingly unique.

A Move and an Idea

Dr. Barot’s personal skin issues began in 2012 when she moved from Chicago to Jackson, Mississippi. The change in climate did a number on her skin, so she searched high and low for a skincare regime that would address her acne and hyperpigmentation. 

“There was no methodological way of building an evidence-based skincare routine,” says Dr. Barot. “Despite visiting local dermatologists and a couple of med spas, I did not get the help I needed or the personalized concierge skincare education and consultations that I was seeking.”

Dr. Barot also observed that social media often served as a roadblock to finding the best skin care products. “So many influencers have become skincare experts without proper training or knowledge of how ingredients work, pharmaceutics, product formulation, skin science,” she notes.

The trial-and-error approach wasn’t working for Dr. Barot, and she knew she wasn’t alone in her struggles. Spending hours researching ingredients, methods, and professional opinions, Dr. Barot eventually landed on the idea for The Skin Consult, a concierge skincare service that offers professional advice and proven results. 

Bringing Tech and Beauty Together 

Right before the pandemic prompted nationwide shutdowns, Dr. Barot decided to combine her research and interest in making professional skincare more accessible and tailored to the individual into a one-stop-shop for skincare needs. The Skin Consult brings knowledgeable skincare professionals together into one site, creating a single resource to access tried and true experts no matter where the consumer may be located. “There are many knowledgeable skincare professionals out there,” says Dr. Barot, “but the challenge is we don’t know how to find them and how to know who is good. This was one problem I wanted to solve.”

Dr. Barot created software that would allow approved skincare experts to list their profiles, availability, and specialties in one easily-searchable system. Once a customer finds an expert they are interested in working with, that professional can be easily booked for a video-based virtual consultation. 

This merger of beauty and technology speaks to the new post-pandemic approach to meeting consumers where they are. People have become accustomed to online shopping, online health and wellness care, and having services tailored to their individual needs via sophisticated algorithms. The Skin Consult brings this novel mix of technology together in one cohesive site. 

To Dr. Barot, the medical community has always been data-driven, and she believed her skincare site needed to be data-driven as well. With The Skin Consult, every product is vetted. Clinical trials, ingredient panels, and marketing claims are reviewed before products hit the site’s virtual shelves. The Skin Consult again turns to the data to match users with the correct consultants and the best possible products. The site’s algorithm is based on peer-reviewed published literature and 50-plus data points collected from users during the consultation booking process. This AI-enabled algorithm allows tailored recommendations to be created for each individual site user in real time, during their consultation with their chosen professional.

A New Frontier for Skin Care 

The Skin Consult represents a new frontier for skincare, not only with its use of advanced technology but in its holistic approach. “We aim to tackle skincare as it relates to the entire mind and body,” remarks Dr. Barot. 

The platform has already onboarded 35 professionals that include doctors, PAs, pharmacists, and estheticians. Since its inception, over a thousand patient surveys have been compiled, and data has been extracted to direct site users to the best care team and products for their skincare needs. 

Dr. Barot sees The Skin Consult platform changing the way people approach skincare, but also how skincare and beauty brands find their market. 

“Every day, there are new brands launching in a very crowded space. A trusted platform can help the best of these brands stand out and continue to be available to the public. Our marketplace offers a place for consumers to find the lesser-known brands that are vetted by experts in the field.”

On The Skin Consult site is the promise that the concierge service “meets your skin where it is and walks with you every step of the way”. This highly-personal and intuitive service is at the forefront of the new consumer market, bringing users precisely what they’ve been looking for in an accessible way.

Michelle has been a part of the journey ever since Bigtime Daily started. As a strong learner and passionate writer, she contributes her editing skills for the news agency. She also jots down intellectual pieces from categories such as science and health.

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Health

Limited Options for COVID-19 Vaccine Injury Victims

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Rolling out vaccines and booster shots across the U.S. marked crucial milestones in terms of healthcare and fighting the spread of COVID-19. However, an essential element is still missing: legal recourse for those who experience serious adverse side effects.

Current COVID-19 Vaccine Injury Claims

Currently, there are more than 1,300 pending injury claims related to side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine. They are waiting to be heard by the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, a government tribunal that handles public health emergencies.

To date, this tribunal has only handled two such cases. One alleged the plaintiff suffered from severe tongue and throat swelling following the vaccine, while the other alleged long-term shoulder pain. Plaintiffs lost both cases and were denied compensation.

Given the comparatively new nature of the COVID-19 vaccine, it is challenging for plaintiffs to prove that their injuries directly resulted from the vaccine. Combined with the lack of research on long-term side effects, it is unlikely that plaintiffs will be able to meet this burden of proof anytime in the near future.

How COVID-19 Vaccine Injury Claims Are Handled

Of interest is that claims related to the COVID-19 vaccine are being heard by the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program (CICP) instead of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program, a no-fault government tribunal; known colloquially as “vaccine court.”

Formed in the late 1980s, the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program responded to diphtheria, pertussis, and tetanus (DPT) vaccine claims. Pharmaceutical companies were listed as defendants in lawsuits related to vaccine side effects. However, the government created a separate entity to handle such cases when manufacturers threatened to stop producing vaccines altogether.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) clarified that the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program could not hear cases until the COVID-19 vaccine has been recommended for routine administration to children, per a 1986 vaccine law. Additionally, the COVID-19 vaccine would have to be subject to the same 75-cent tax imposed on other vaccines.

Compensation From the CICP

There are several differences between the two tribunals, which plaintiffs claim make the CICP inappropriate for COVID-19 vaccine injury litigation. Of these, compensation is one of the biggest causes for concern.

The Vaccine Injury Compensation Program has awarded injured plaintiffs more than $4 billion since its inception. In comparison, the CICP has only awarded compensation for 29 of 455 cases— that means that 92 percent of plaintiffs are deemed ineligible or denied compensation. Compensation ranged from $31 to nearly $2.3 million, with a median award of roughly $5,600.

This is partly because compensation options from the CICP are much more limited. Plaintiffs can only claim lost wages and out-of-pocket medical expenses up to $50,000 per year or death benefits up to $370,376 in the case of a vaccine-related fatality.

Differences Between Vaccine Injury Compensation Programs

Below are other key differences between the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program and the Countermeasures Injury Compensation Program:

  • Plaintiffs do not have the opportunity to testify in court
  • There is no independent judge or jury present
  • Pain and suffering-related damages are not covered
  • There is a limited right to appeal one’s case

This means that plaintiffs who file a case related to injuries allegedly caused by the COVID-19 vaccine are offered less compensation, less legal representation, and less recourse through appeals as opposed to plaintiffs who file a case for injuries caused by any other vaccine. Still, if you are experiencing symptoms related to the COVID-19 vaccine, it may be in your best interest to speak with an injury attorney. 

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