- October 9, 2019
- Posted by: Dr. Okey Ekemezie
- Category: Health News
Saving millions of lives
After waiting for almost 5 hours to see the doctor at the General Hospital in Ikeja, Lagos State, Mr. Olutayo Ayinla was finally given an appointment to see the consultant Cardiologist. But wait… it wasn’t the next day, but in the next 35 days because of so many patients on the waiting list.
I could see the anger and frustration on his face as he entered my office. “Doctor, how will I wait so long to see the Cardiologist?”: he said. “What if something goes wrong with my heart?…what will happen if my condition deteriorates?…what if my failing health and constant palpitations prevent me from coming to the hospital?”
You can also read:
Part 1 of DOCOTAL (DIGITAL DOCTORS)
These are the many questions I find difficult to answer, and this is also the plight that the general population faces when it comes to booking an appointment with a consultant in a general hospital. With the recent economic recession in the country, consulting with a Cardiologist in a private hospital will not only cost a fortune but is a dream for the average citizens. Remember Mr. Olutayo is a 57 year old businessman with a history of hypertension for 10 years and a recently diagnosed cardiopathy that has reduced his output in business.
Uberfication of Healthcare
Imagine if Mr. Olutayo could just tap his phone, get a free online consultation with a cardiologist and be instructed on which tests to be done, get his ECG (Electrocardiogram) result to be interpreted by the same doctor via a video call. To make life easier, he sends the doctors prescription to the nearest pharmacy to his home or office and gets all his medications (and medical devices and wearables to daily monitor his heart if needs be) sent to him at a low cost from the comfort of his home. Even when he’s asleep, his doctor monitors his heart beat and all cardiac activities and can detect any danger before it happens with the aid of a wearable medical device which of itself doesn’t interfere with his sleep.
This might sound like a bit outrageous to him but actually DOCOTAL is bringing all this to thousand of patients with just one click. Docotal (Digital Doctors) with its free online medical consultation is not only helping patients to hack time and reduce many unnecessary hours waiting at the doctors office but is here in Nigeria and Africa to “democratise” and “Uberfy” healthcare to the thousands of people and perharps millions.
In the same way, people in remote areas and villages can access the services of doctors and consultants and the long distance can be brought closer with just a click. Can life be any better than this? Therefore an elderly farmer even while working in his farm can be monitored by his physician in the city through the Electronic Medical Records (EMR). These devices will also encourage patients to monitor their own progress and become more engaged in their health, which will improve quality of life, extend healthy lifespan by reducing unnecessary deaths from ignorance.
CALL TO ACTION (CTA)
As patients transition from passive healthcare recipients to active value-seeking customers, it is the health sector’s turn to master digital tools.