The COVID-19 pandemic has surely changed the world we used to live in. While technology has been a part of our lives, the ongoing pandemic has accelerated towards the digital era with more people having to accept the paradigm shift in most asoects of daily life. Similar to working from home, at-home services have become a new normal.
At-home services have sprawled across essentials, medicines, home maintenance, and more due to the pandemic. However, people still have to visit hospitals for basic healthcare services, especially when the risk of getting infected is high. What if you could get healthcare services at home?
CallHealth is one such platform that has brought technology and healthcare services together to provide everything about healthcare at home from medicines and medical supplies to nursing care and physiotherapy. And under the strong leadership and visionary strategies of Hari Thalapalli, the Executive Director and CEO, CallHealth is widening its range in services and regions to provide ‘everything about healthcare’ in and outside India.
Read the following interview where Hari shares the deatils of CallHealth’s genesis, how a series of lockdowns affected the company’s operations and healthcare sector as a whole and his observations as a visionary leader of the post-pandemic era.
Please brief our audience about CallHealth, its values, and the key aspects of its stronghold within the home care services industry.
CallHealth is a technology-powered healthcare company that has built the world’s first integrated virtual-and-mobility platform to bring ‘everything about health’ to the customer’s doorstep. The differentiating elements that give CallHealth the strong foothold in the home care services industry are:
Geography: Being an aggregator, CallHealth delivers the same excellent service quality to any region (currently in India). We have partnered with top healthcare service providers throughout the country, and we provide our clients with seamless service in any geography.
Brand: With our history of excellent service and as the most awarded healthcare start-up in the industry, CallHealth brings trust to the table, which is the most critical element in healthcare.
Specificity: CallHealth provides customers with specificity in their required services. We customize services according to the client’s requirements and provide what is needed, saving both their time and money.
Unified Approach: With our partners, we deliver unified solutions to our customers by bringing them the best of both worlds.
Added Value: CallHealth, with its technological prowess, leverages digital intelligence and analytics to provide its customers with value-added personalized insights. Also, our stringent partner screening process with multiple checkpoints to onboarding and training on various parameters assures the delivery of standardized yet personalized services.
By leveraging these qualities, CallHealth has so far:
- Serviced more than 10,00,000 orders.
- Made more than 50 healthcare services accessible via App, Call, and Web.
- Association with 500+ healthcare providers
- Provides 1,00,000+ healthcare products.
- Defined more than 1,000 care pathways; and worked on more than 4,000 person-years of platform development and on-ground testing.
- Best Software Architecture in IT products winner of ICMG Global.
Tell us more about the services that make your company stand out from the competition.
CallHealth has produced the world’s first integrated three-dimensional health platform that provides services – at the platform, home, and at the center. It endeavors to aggregate all stakeholders and institutions of the healthcare ecosystem to enable timely and efficient assistance to the end customer both virtually and physically. The platform captures and analyses health data continues to provide excellent decision support across prevention, wellness, cure, and care.
Our unique approach of providing services virtually wherever possible and physically where necessary thoroughly supports the customer’s desire to receive healthcare services at their convenience. The differentiated services that we provide our customers with are:
- Home Services: Doctor consultation, home sample collection, physiotherapy, speech therapy, bedside assistance, radiology and pathology reports delivery, fitness, and wellness.
- Platform Services: Doctor Consultation, Medical Tourism, Family Doctor, Nutrition and Dietetics, Blood Connect, EHR Digitization.
- Centre Services: Facilitation, Hospitals, Imaging Centres, Diagnostics Laboratories, Nursing Homes, Medical Tourism Services, Institutional Health Solutions, Last Honor Services.
What is your opinion on the impact of the current pandemic on the global healthcare sector, and how has your company fared during the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns?
This pandemic has been debilitating in every way, physically, commercially and for many organizations, financially. There seems to be no permanent solution in sight. And from our vantage point of managing this disease and its implications, we wouldn’t be too wrong in saying that we see another 12 months or more before this wave partially subsides. The economic and psychological impact this will leave behind, is not easy to fathom.
While hospitals and labs, in general, have been stretched to their seams, HealthTech companies like us have seen a mixed bag overall.
For example, most of the ‘at home’ services like nursing, physiotherapy, and many other similar services have been severely impacted as customers at this time would like to minimize outsiders coming into their homes. Similarly, wellness and health check activities incorporate and schools have been shut down given the work from the home decision.
However, virtual doctor consultations and home testing services have seen a huge uptake overall. The B2C adoption for these services is seeing significant traction currently.
In your opinion, what could be the future of the home care services sector post the pandemic? And how are you strategizing your company’s operations for that future?
Once this wave subsides, customers are going to be more aware of the need for prevention and wellness rather than cure, and that has been at the heart of what CallHealth offers. Also, two factors are going to significantly alter the way they seek assistance when needed.
Firstly, the convenience of availing most healthcare services at home will become a norm whether it is Dialysis (HD or PD), Speech Therapy, Audiometry, Sleep Apnea, Optometry to name a few. Secondly, the willingness and confidence to go to a hospital will reduce given the comfort of virtual consultations and the need to prevent Hospital Acquired Infections (HAI).
We are therefore building capabilities to live up to our tagline of being Everything about Health, in a single platform and are aligning our offerings to our three guiding principles for a customer-centric healthcare solution.
- Everything that can be done virtually, should be done virtually.
- Anything that requires a physical touch and contact, should be provided at the customer’s doorstep be it the home or office.
- Only those that don’t meet the above two guidelines, should require to go to a hospital or a wellness center.
As an established leader, what would be your advice to the budding entrepreneurs and enthusiasts aspiring to venture into the home care services sector?
Most businesses strive to provide a service to the end customer. What businesses often miss is the ability to provide intelligence and insightful guidance that can help them with alerts for timely preventive care, reducing the Total Cost of Health (TCH), and ensuring Care Continuum rather than see every service as an episodic engagement.
Startups that can help integrate these insights and intelligence along with the service they provide are bound to be more successful.
How do you envision scaling your company’s operations in 2021?
As stated earlier, while we are capitalizing on the need for testing and doctor consultations during this period, we are gearing ourselves for expanding the canvas of ‘at home services’ (along with established players in the respective fields), so that we can be prepared for the growing and wide range of healthcare needs for the end customers.
About the leader
Hari Thalapalli is a multi-disciplinary leader with more than three decades of experience in the technology and healthcare services business. He was instrumental in navigating Tech Mahindra through the 2009 crisis and won the Chief People Officer of the Year Award from Bloomberg in 2010. As the Chief Marketing Officer, Hari provided leadership to critical business process areas and steered Tech Mahindra’s brand positioning.
After joining as CEO in 2015, Hari is advancing to make CallHealth a game-changing player in the healthcare industry. Envisioning healthcare from the customer’s point of view, he has reversed the traditional healthcare delivery approach by offering an entirely integrated range of personalized healthcare services satisfying the different life stages of a customer. He aspires to deliver ‘Everything about Health’ at the customers’ doorstep, both in and outside India.