The world today is surrounded by numerous health threats. After COVID19, the spread of diseases is being succeeded by other similar viruses and illnesses, risking the future of human health. With so much going on in the health sector, diagnosing the particular cause becomes difficult for professionals, especially with the collision of symptoms.
The chances of misdiagnosis in such cases are significantly increased, which could be gravely dangerous for the patient. In such a situation, connecting with the right healthcare professionals play a crucial role. They can help facilitate the best remedy while also having the opinions of other specialists in the field and proceeding with the best-suggested procedure.
Helping the health professionals save more lives and tackle these issues, Dr. Sedric Degbo founded REMA. REMA is a health-tech start-up that connects medical professionals for better healthcare decisions.
Let’s know more about REMA and its CEO, Dr. Sedric Degbo, in the following interview:
Please shed some light on your leadership journey as a CEO in the healthcare space.
My name is Dr. Sedric DEGBO, I am a Beninese Medical Doctor and Founder of REMA, a health-tech start-up. I have practiced as a general practitioner for several years in community health centers in my country. I also served as an independent consultant in pharmaceutical marketing for some companies before devoting myself fully to my business for over 3 years.
What was the inspiration that prompted you to venture into the healthcare niche?
I have always enjoyed tackling major issues to develop a long-term vision. Towards the end of my medical studies, I came across a scientific study that estimated that medical errors would represent the third leading cause of death in the world, behind cancers and cardiovascular diseases. This was true for Western countries, so I was naturally interested in the case of Africa. And the report on medical errors in Africa was even more alarming.
Estimates suggested more deaths each year than malaria and AIDS combined in Africa. The importance of the problem and my strong desire for impact, motivated me to think about a solution approach adapted to our continental context, which is REMA, a medical platform for remote collaboration and continuing education, dedicated to healthcare professionals in Africa.
Being a CEO at Rema, how do you envision growing your network operations into the healthcare niche?
Our vision with REMA is to reduce the incidence of medical errors by simplifying access to medical expertise, medico-scientific resources, and quality continuing education for healthcare professionals in Africa. Concretely, with our solutions, we estimate to avoid more than 500,000 deaths due to medical errors by 2027. From a commercial point of view, we want to make our platforms the reference channel for reaching healthcare professionals in Africa. and collect real-time health data across the continent.
From initiating your career as a medical professional in 2017, what were the challenges you faced, and enlist us the professional hacks that helped you become the grand success that you are today?
In general, innovative entrepreneurship is a path full of obstacles, even more so in Africa and in the health sector. So, venturing there with full awareness of all the difficulties or challenges that await us is almost impossible. Personally, it is my desire for impact and my unwavering desire to make a difference in my sector, which has given me all the resilience necessary to overcome the still modest successes that we have known so far. But obviously, the best of REMA is still ahead of us!
Can you share your experience with the Bluemind Foundation and elaborate upon the learning that made you ramp up your growth curve?
What made the difference in the success of REMA is above all our team for its quality of execution. Then the extremely precise knowledge that we have of our market, and finally the quality of the relationships that we establish with our various target customers. Regarding the Bluemind Foundation, I was contacted by the president who humbly asked me to join the board of directors of the organization that fights for mental health in Africa. Which I accepted without hesitation because their mission is in line with my personal values. I, therefore, contribute to the development of the foundation by bringing my expertise as a health-tech entrepreneur and as a health professional.
As a successful leader in the healthcare niche, what is your opinion on integrating technology with healthcare, which is currently grabbing the global spotlight?
The technological boom of recent decades has profoundly transformed almost all the productive sectors of our society. So, health could not be an exception, especially given the many challenges that this sector is still facing today, particularly in terms of accessibility of healthcare for all. Personally, I think that the emergence of connected objects and the massive digitalization that the whole world is currently experiencing is a guarantee of hope for a better future in healthcare, especially in medical deserts like Africa.
Please give us your valuable input about the future of the healthcare niche for the budding enthusiast aspiring to venture into the medical niche.
To entrepreneurs who want to venture into health technologies, I would tell them not to hesitate because the challenges are significant and there is a place for everyone in several topics. We can cite among others the issues of universal health coverage, low workforce available in health, and lack of hospital beds and medical equipment. So, get started! I will gladly help if needed.
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