By Srinath Srinivasan
Today there are several healthcare startups addressing some key use cases like telemedicine, health insurance, e-pharmacy, doorstep diagnostics and so on. However, there aren’t that many that cater to the needs of those with chronic diseases who are often dependent on the availability of doctors at specific clinics. Remedo is focussed on filling this gap. “We use technology to bring key stakeholders in chronic disease treatment—patients, doctors and pharmaceutical brands— and have built a model around them to enable various services involved in treating chronic diseases,” says Ruchir Mehra, co-founder and CEO, Remedo.
Mehra, who was a practising doctor himself, started Remedo in 2017 along with Harsh V Bansal, and Richeek Arya as a digital engagement platform. According to him, nearly 250 million people in India have chronic diseases. “Patients sign up on the platform and go with a plan that is suitable to them. Doctors are then connected with the respective patients depending on their needs and plan,” he explains.
According to him, while there are various options for a patient, including the digital healthcare network provided by hospital chains, the differentiator lies in the purpose and the added services/ features which are tuned towards understanding user behaviour and dynamically change in real time.
“As a tech startup, we are in a position to quickly adapt to the market and patient needs,” Mehra says. Currently, in addition to consultation, the platform offers diet, exercise, health and lifestyle tips, storage of medical records and reminders, and daily educational videos and images. “The aim is to become a digital companion to the patients through our technology innovation,” he adds.
The startup has raised funds in a pre-Series A funding round from investors led by RiverRock Ventures with participation from AngelList India (through its own fund – TheCollective), IPV, Smile group, IIITH Alumni Fund and RRV.
On the technology front, Remedo is innovating in-house with its own tech teams. “What matters the most to us is innovating on machine learning and AI platforms with data. This is directly connected to our purpose which is the treatment of chronic diseases,” explains Mehra. Today Remedo runs on DISHA (Digital Integrated Smart Health Assistant) which is a smart health assistant, leveraging the AI capabilities of the tech teams.
The Covid-19 pandemic has worked in the company’s favour. Remedo has seen a substantial rise in usage on its platform, with 10x growth in doctors and revenue in the last six months. Mehra says that it can be attributed to the involvement of pharmaceutical brands too. Today, the platform has 3,500 doctors and over two lakh patients. Mehra says, “This unique combination has always helped us. Pharma brands are one of the biggest doorways to a network of doctors. It helps in doctors’ discovery. We do not charge very high prices from doctors to be on our platform but that is the norm today in health-tech industry in India.”