Lack of price transparency in Indian healthcare in one of the biggest hurdles. Bridging this gap, LetsMD, an online venture started by Engineer duo provides an avenue for patients to connect with ethical healthcare service providers.
LetsMD aims to reduce the commission system prevalent in hospitals in India by bringing transparency in healthcare outlets in pricing as well as quality and doctor selection process. It helps patients make an informed healthcare choice and provides pricing packages for a wide range of elective procedures across top hospitals and then connects a prospective patient directly to the hospital.
The online venture found in November 2015 by Nivesh Khandelwal and Prakhar Gupta is one of its kind that give access to consumers to pricing of various hospitals in a clean and transparent user interface. Besides procedures, they also provide a detailed listing of free camps happening in a city and patients can register directly for the same without having to call up the hospitals.
Besides procedures, LetsMD also provides a detailed listing of free camps happening in a city, enabling patients to register directly for the same without calling up the hospitals.
“A patient should also access information about hospitals, doctors, diagnostic chains etc., and make an informed selection without having to go through middlemen and LetsMD hopes to enable that,” informs Khandelwal.
The company’s biggest challenge was to get reputed hospital chains’ consent to display their pricing on a new web-based platform. “Organised healthcare still being a nascent industry in India, it is primarily doctor driven. Most hospital chains are focused on creating a brand that can be bigger than the doctor and are very conscious about the pedigree of the partners they take on board,” he said.
He informed that LetsMD’s main focus is to provide a transparent market place for surgeries in India where people can compare hospitals on pricing and clinical outcomes.
“Currently a referring doctor is taken on face value by patients and in a lot of cases the doctor refers the patient to the hospital providing the maximum commission. LetsMD aims to reduce the commission system prevalent in hospital/doctor selection process,” Khandelwal said.
The company, which currently has six employees aims to consolidate its offering in Delhi-NCR and is trying to expand up to Bengaluru and Mumbai in Q3 of FY 17.
“Over the next five years, we hope to make LetsMD indispensable for a patient going for an elective surgery in India. We hope to introduce a new word to a patient’s vocabulary like Google did,” he added.
IT is enabling quicker access to information and reducing information asymmetry, he said adding that consumers today are much more informed than a decade ago and hospital systems needs to be upgraded to treat and manage a well-informed consumer.
“From a hospital’s standpoint, IT has enabled more efficient communication between a patient and a doctor by making booking OPDs, storing medical records, treating and managing diseases easier and more convenient. Moreover, an advancement in telemedicine, coupled with efficient IT systems, has ensured healthcare is accessible to a wider population than was possible earlier,” he added.