mfine, an AI powered, on-demand healthcare service which enables virtual medical consultations, on Thursday announced the launch of remote clinics. Remote clinics bring the hospital's satellite or nodal centres, corporate clinic outposts and diagnostic health centres on the mfine platform and enables virtual consultations with speciality doctors via audio and video chat. mfine rolled out the first set of remote clinics in partnership with RxDx Bangalore and Fortis Mumbai. The company plans to scale this model across India by partnering with similar specialty hospitals having primary health centres and aims to add 100 more clinics on its network in the next six months.
Access to health care services is particularly challenging in many districts in India outside of cities. Moreover, rural communities depend on a system of small clinics and health centres to provide primary care services, often utilising non-physician health professionals. Remote clinics help hospitals expand services in rural areas by connecting patients to specialists. These clinics equipped with new technology can move beyond traditional functions and provide a broader range of services. The remote clinics enable better monitoring of a patient’s progress and also helps them with regular follow-up with the same speciality doctor very conveniently on mfine app or in the clinic. The combination of a remote clinic and mfine app will be especially helpful for the elderly, bedridden and differently-abled patients. Chronic patients who need to consult with specialty doctors on a regular basis will also be able to continue their treatment using the mfine app.
Ashutosh Lawania, Co-Founder, mfine said, “Remote clinics aligns with mfine’s vision of making quality care accessible to every Indian. By diminishing the impact of distance and time, mfine remote clinics can expand capacity, foster coordinated care, improve the quality and efficiency of the hospital and support patient management. Regular monitoring and follow-ups are much easier done on mobile and will save a lot of time and money for patients. Hospitals can also now deliver healthcare to more patients and offer super speciality services in distant areas through their nodal centres. ”
A recent study carried out in rural India found that the majority (76.2%) of subjects were aware of primary health clinics (PHCs) in their area but utilisation of its services was found to be 36.3%. This was attributed to lower socio-economic background, lower literacy rates and lack of awareness. The figure is lower for patients who consulted with specialty doctors since most of these doctors are only available in the cities. India currently has 8,000 private hospitals with 20,000 rural clinics. Government and private establishments are already over-burdened by the patient volume, which makes remote consulting a win-win strategy for patients and doctors alike.
mfine has started the first phase of deployment with RxDx Hospitals Bangalore, a reputed multi-specialty chain of hospitals consisting of 8 primary healthcare clinics and 15 corporate clinics. Apart from the remote clinics, mfine will also support the doctors working at RxDx Aarogyasri centres, nodal and corporate clinics across all branches. mfine is also onboarding Fortis Mumbai with four primary healthcare centres.
Dr. Sunita Maheshwari, Founder, RxDx Hospitals said, “RxDx has been a part of the mfine hospital network since the last 2 years and we have enabled virtual OPD and other healthcare services for patients on mfine platform. mfine Remote Clinics will further help RxDx to enable access to Super Speciality care in distant parts around Bangalore city where there is meagre access to super speciality doctors. It will also help RxDx to expand Super Speciality OPD services in corporate clinics.”
mfine aims to be one of the largest virtual hospitals in the world with services across primary care, secondary care and chronic care management including auxiliary services like diagnostic tests. mfine is currently assisting more than 2,500 consultations every day. The startup has over 750 doctors from 225 leading hospitals consulting across 25 specialities on its platform.
mfine was founded in 2017 by Ashutosh Lawania (Myntra co-founder) and Prasad Kompalli, a former business head at Myntra. The founders were later joined by Ajit Narayanan, ex-Myntra CTO, Arjun Choudhary, ex-Myntra head of growth marketing. The startup has raised over $28 million and has 300 employees in Bengaluru and Hyderabad.