The pandemic has underlined the fact that technology is the way forward across the industries. Digital healthcare has quickly become a genuine alternative in the healthcare industry, thanks to hardly a handful of ‘solution’ providers like Visionary Life Sciences Pvt Ltd, which wants to create a health valet for the common man through patient-focused care, continuum of care and increasing digital integration.
Headquartered in Pune, VLS has a deep interest in digital innovation and research and providing something for every stakeholder of the healthcare ecosystem. It indeed goes beyond the norms to even incorporate the government and the corporate realm on its platform. The platform also boasts unique features like self-service healthcare to; not to mention its cutting-edge analytics engine that goes a long way into preventive healthcare. CIO Insider interviews the man at the helm, Yatin Kantak (CoFounder) and the company’s COO, Neel Bhende.
In conversation with Yatin Kantak, Co-Founder, and Neel Bhende, COO, Visionary
The healthcare technology industry today is highly patient experience and personalized care driven. As a comprehensive healthcare technology company, where does VLS stand amidst this dynamic industry?
We, at VLS, aim to bridge the gap between the community’s social, economic and cultural development by creating a health registry and visualizing patient index for every citizen by adopting the principle of intersectoral cooperation. Our Mobile App and Web-based portal constitutes a SaaS platform where a unique digital health ID of a citizen gets attached to their healthcare records. Patients today are more conscious, tech-savvy and more willing to embrace emerging technologies. As a result, a new trend – ‘flipped care’ – has emerged where the focus has shifted from the healthcare provider to the healthcare consumer.
Patients want to take more control of their own health as well as the health of their near and dear one’s and are more open to new ways of receiving care. Furthermore, there is a new trend that has come up during the pandemic, which is the continuum of care beyond the hospitals - specifically home health.
With an inadequate number of beds, many health-tech providers like us are focusing more on how to install digital technologies for remote patient monitoring, such as telemonitoring, IoT, connected devices and wearable. This enhances patient convenience and reduces healthcare costs. It enables different healthcare service providers to achieve better health outcomes through continuous diagnoses, while also resulting in easy health history tracking & monitoring and predicting genetic problems before the actual occurrence, thanks to growing digital and healthcare partnerships between the public and the private sector.
With our vision, all healthcare providers will be able to view medication prescribed, medication allergies, diagnoses and investigation results to deliver safer care
What are the predominant challenges that you solve for the healthcare ecosystem?
The Indian consumers are always price conscious and driven by affordability. The penetration in smaller cities/towns/rural areas remains low, owing mainly to the lack of affordability, accessibility, awareness, and availability. But we see a growing trend of anticipating health needs by self, using personalized digital devices for staying healthy and preventive care. Our App is focused on patients’ personal health rather than generating revenue from the users.
What are the unique propositions that your platform delivers to its different stakeholders?
For instance, let’s take the case of path labs. Our solution, Howzu Connect, focuses on making virtual path lab care accessible to anybody who has a smart phone and internet connection. With Howzu onboarding path labs, it would allow healthcare consumers to discover them based on search queries like specific health problems and need for convenience. The API integration helps connect the lab database to understand the patient's entire medical history, treatment plan, and investigative reports. In rural areas, we plan to deploy mobile medical vans, activated by IoT technology to ensure best healthcare services to anyone anywhere at least possible costs.
Howzu App for patients helps them store their current and history of health records in a secured manner in one place electronically. It also offers them a seamless experience of booking appointments, home collection of samples, tracking tests & report status and making payment. t also features a referral doctor who, with prior consent,
will create an end-to-end treatment plan for patients.
For Enterprises, the app streamlines employee health records & leave management systems and offers meticulous statistical representations in the form of dynamic and real-time dashboards – everything in a highly secured environment. On the other hand, for the government, it offers anonymous surveillance data in encrypted format to track health trends at pin code level through provision of authentication through National Digital ID, Aadhar ID and Mobile Number. This will help reduce burden on hospitals as well as NHA and accelerate digital adoption through interoperability of records across providers.
Neel Bhende, COO
What is the future roadmap set for VLS? What kind of innovations are we looking forward to? What are the areas that your company is going to invest in?
With a better understanding of your healthcare history, your doctor will be able to deliver more effective care and help you achieve improved health outcomes by making better informed diagnoses and decisions for the best course of treatment to improve your health.
With our vision, all healthcare providers will be able to view medication prescribed, medication allergies, diagnoses and investigation results to deliver safer care. This is particularly useful in cases where your friends and family are unable to recall names of medication prescribed or diagnoses by other doctors, or may be unable to speak (e.g., loss of voice or unconscious). This could avoid unnecessary adverse drug reactions. In medical emergency, access to critical information, via Howzu, could save your life or your loved ones. We plan to undertake research on identifying causes of genetic history as well.
We are also establishing an AI driven, on-demand self-service health care tool for applications including predictive healthcare. In addition, we will also be applying AI & Blockchain models to record real-time patient data for data processing, authentication and sharing across platforms in aggregate formats with prior consent in a secured and transparent way, and in turn convert data into actionable business insights. We aim to become a catalyst in the self-service healthcare services segment that can prove to be a boon in the post-pandemic era through release of a symptom’s tracker feature.