One of the many deterrents in visiting a doctor is often the unpleasant experience of having to wait in queue for your turn along with other patients, carry files full of past medical records and basically spend time in a dull environment full of disease. Saurabh Arora, CEO of Lybrate was quick to identify this gap.
“There is a demand and supply gap between doctors and patients; an inertia among people to visit doctors,” observes Saurabh. Having worked with Facebook, connecting small businesses with people through technology, Saurabh returned to India two years ago connecting patients with doctors through mobile phones. Apart from noticing a general reluctance in visiting doctors, Saurabh also found that a majority of people resort to self medication instead.
This generated the idea of creating a communication platform that would bring together doctors and patients with zero hassle. Lybrate not only allows patients to reach out to doctors but also helps doctors get access to patients and earn a fee in return.
So if you have a symptom you’re not sure about, you no longer need to make a trip to the clinic. Simply download the app and post your query knowing that a doctor will get back to you. And just in case they seek to take a look at past records, patients can not only store medical records online but also privately share them with the doctor. But perhaps one of the most standout features of the app is for doctors. Once registered with Lybrate, not only patients but doctors too have the flexibility to provide digital consultation and, charge a fee for it as well. Lybrate recovers a part of the fees from Doctors as platform fees.
Also there is a unique feature called as the Lybrate health feed, where doctors and other health experts give advice on preventive measures, diet and nutrition and general health tips. In all Lybrate today is positioning it self as a communication platform for health.
Not only does this practice help cover part of the platform expense but also lends some degree of assurance in the mind of the patient.
Available on IOS and Android platforms, Lybrate is the No.1 medical app on the Google Playstore with 250,000 downloads within three months of its launch. About 80,000 doctors have registered with Lybrate. And yes, one can rest assured about the credibility of the doctors as every one of them is verified through registration numbers, photo id and their medical degree. HIPAA compliant medical information is stored on a private cloud and none of the interactions are made public. So you can be sure that important details such as phone number and email addresses are not shared.
All doctors are verified before they are accepted into the platform. They need to submit their medical degree, registration number (IMA or IDA etc) Photo Id among other documents to be considered to be enlisted on this platform.
“Everything has been developed in-house,” says Saurabh, “There is zero sales force and the support is in-house as well.”
It’s an interesting way to bring together both ends of the medical spectrum. The question is, would you be comfortable using such technology for medical consultation?