The digital transformation of the medical industry is well underway – undoubtedly escalated by the pandemic – but also by a savvier and more demanding patient who expects speed, convenience and absolute accuracy from their healthcare provider.
One name at the front of the revolution has been Medcare Group, which has chosen to use technological development as a key driver of its growth and internal improvement.
Right now, Medcare is in the process of launching its InterSystems solution TrakCare – a unified healthcare information system – across all its four hospitals and 18 medical centres in Dubai and Sharjah, says Andre Daoud, Group CEO, Medcare Hospitals & Medical Centres.
Hosted in the Cloud, TrakCare will allow hospital teams seamless access to integrated electronic patient information – as well as streamlining patient admissions and discharges.
Back in the spring of 2020 – just before Covid-19 hit – Medcare was also close to launching a digital platform called teleMEDCARE with the help of Cisco’s Country Digital Acceleration (CDA) programme. Through the new platform patients could directly and immediately speak with a doctor in a call centre like environment.
Daoud explains that the arrival of Covid-19 sped up his hospital’s already ambitious, future-focused plans. “The timing had been almost uncanny,” he says.
“Pre-pandemic the majority of our patient care centred around in-person consultations scheduled via a call centre or chatbot,” Daoud says.
Indeed, the healthcare group’s bilingual conversational AI agent was the first chatbot of its kind in the healthcare industry in the Middle East that could perform end-to-end appointment management without the need for a human agent intervention.
Daoud adds, “As we moved forward on our digital journey, we aimed at further enhancing our online appointment solution to include a seamless booking experience with appointment reminders, cancellations, and rescheduling. We also began reaching patients through WhatsApp and facilitating more connections to our in-person services.
“The fact that we had already engaged with Cisco with a strategic partner on a plan for teleconsultations made everything a little easier when the pandemic struck.
“The pandemic has changed the entire landscape of the healthcare sector in the UAE and beyond.”