oDoc, Sri Lanka’s video medical consultation platform, has introduced an employee healthcare solution for businesses. oDoc’s corporate subscriptions present organisations with a compelling new option to offer employees unlimited fully paid doctor consultations from anywhere, including at corporate and factory sick rooms.
oDoc is a smartphone app that connects patients with doctors for instant video consultations. It gives patients access to an SLMC registered doctor eliminating the need to brave traffic and spend hours in a hospital waiting room. In addition, patients benefit from expert advice, receive instant E-prescriptions (if medically required), and even have medicine delivered straight to their door, for no extra charge. It all takes place within a few clicks of a smartphone through a trilingual app designed and developed entirely in Sri Lanka.
The American Medical Association has found that nearly 75% of regular doctor visits can be handled effectively through video or audio consultations. This form of healthcare delivery has gained global acceptance and is in wide use in countries including the US, the UK, India, Japan and Singapore.
The oDoc platform has been up and running for close to a year now. It counts over 180 GPs and specialists including many senior consultants. All doctors on oDoc are equipped with a dedicated application to manage oDoc consultations and issue prescriptions. oDoc’s newest initiative, corporate subscriptions, follows the use of the platform by over 11,000 Sri Lankans.
The corporate subscription package is designed to increase productivity. It is a company health benefit that allows employers to provide their employees, and optionally the employee’s immediate family, with unlimited access to the doctors on the oDoc platform. The company has developed a business model that allows these subscriptions to be priced as low as Rs. 25 per employee per month, making the service affordable for both large and small businesses.
“We want this to complement traditional forms of employee health coverage, which usually covers just a limited number of OPD visits. In essence, this is unlimited OPD cover for your employees,” says the company’s CEO and Co-Founder Heshan Fernando. “With oDoc, your employees will not only have instant access to GPs, but also to specialists, including paediatricians, gynaecologists, cardiologists, and dermatologists.” An area that stood out to the team that needed improving was the cost and quality of healthcare provided to non-executive staff, especially in the manufacturing sector. “Factories both large and small traditionally operate a sick room where they have a nurse stationed, but would only get a qualified doctor coming in for a few hours each week. This is highly inefficient because the staff members would usually wait for the doctor to arrive and then queue up to see him. It is also costly for the factory in terms of sourcing a visiting doctor. At the end of the day, productivity is lost, as care is not available when and where it is required, leading to higher instances of illness, infection, absenteeism and presenteeism,” Fernando said.
Keeping with the mission of the company to offer high-quality affordable healthcare to all, the team at oDoc worked to offer an alternative. Fernando explained: “We proposed installing an oDoc access point, complete with a pre-loaded tablet in factory sick rooms, whereby any staff member can walk in, talk to a doctor within 3 minutes, get instant advice 24/7 and even a prescription if medically required. We have already launched at several partner factories, and it’s proving to be a success.”
Over 15 companies have currently signed on to the service including some of the country’s largest corporates such as MAS and Brandix and multinational insurance providers such as AIA. Even family-owned SMEs have signed on. Faiz Brothers, a Pettah based hardware supplier, now offers all its 15 staff members unlimited consultations through oDoc. oDoc’s venture into corporate subscriptions promises to be an interesting new option for corporates looking to offer better care options for their employees whilst boosting productivity. It is expected that similar digitisation initiatives being undertaken by Sri Lankan corporates and manufacturing sector companies will contribute towards boosting the country’s competitiveness and economic performance by utilising technology to its fullest potential.