eDoctor. Getting Checked Online
Illness, diseases, aches and pains have a nasty habit of sneaking up on you when you least expect it. Technology is so advanced these days that we usually have an app for everything, including medical emergencies and fitness tracking. However, nothing is really mainstream yet, and us, Sri Lankans, need a more accessible solution for our medical queries.
This is where eDoctor.lk comes in. Founded in 2012 by Dr. Harsha Jayakody, eDoctor uses modern communication channels to offer 24/7 medical advice and assistance to its members. It all started because Dr. Jayakody wanted to change the manner in which a patient is connected to a doctor to obtain medical advice.
“Sometimes it is not necessary for a patient to spend time and money travelling back and forth to meet a doctor, when all they require is not diagnosis, but some advice on the path they should take,” says Dr. Jayakody. “Doctors are not just there for diagnosis and writing prescriptions, we can also give a patient advice on things like which category of consultant they should channel, the scans that are recommended for particular ailments, as well as nutrition and dietary insights.”
This is the basic premise eDoctor operates on. Members can access a pool of general practitioners through a call, an email or a chat message, and obtain initial medical advice, as well as advice on medical reports, choosing the correct specialist, sexual health, diet, fitness, pregnancy and geriatrics, among many other options.
In addition, eDoctor also adds value to its services by allowing patients to maintain virtual records of all their medical histories, reports and prescriptions. This saves the doctor as well as the patient a lot of time and effort, and it also ensures the most accurate diagnosis and treatment.
A Fully Integrated Service
Early 2015, eDoctor launched its mobile app (available on both Apple and Android platforms), making it that much easier for patients to make a connection with a medical professional. All patient records and details available on the web platform are automatically synced into the app, so you don’t need to carry around anything except your phone on your next visit to the doctor.
The eDoctor app also allows you to keep track of your weight, blood pressure, blood sugar levels and BMI values, as well as vaccination dates. Pregnant mothers will also find a brand new eDoctor text messaging service which will send a daily SMS giving tips on nutrition and health during pregnancy, as well as information on the baby’s progress as each month passes. The app is also an ideal service for senior citizens, as they don’t need to leave their homes to get general medical advice.
In addition, eDoctor maintains partnerships with most major healthcare providers in the country, giving its members additional discounts at major hospitals in the country, as well as access to laboratories at a reduced rate. The eDoctor team also conducts seminars and workshops on various medical and wellness related topics, and reaches out to enrich communities all across Sri Lanka.
“Some patients are not familiar with this concept of telemedicine” explains Dr. Jayakody. “They sometimes question the idea of giving medical advice over the phone or through an email. Through regular advice, reminders and checkups, we want to ensure that diseases are prevented, rather than treated at a later stage.” In fact, telemedicine is the new direction in which the world’s healthcare is moving at present. Simply put, it’s the use of telecommunication and IT to provide clinical health care at a distance, eliminating distance barriers.
Dr. Jayakody envisions a future Sri Lanka where a patient can make use of mobile labs island wide to easily obtain test samples, after which a doctor will examine the report virtually and diagnose accordingly. “This is the model adopted by many developed nations now, and I want Sri Lanka to become a hub where all the health services we provide are recognized and used by the entire Asian region.”
The eDoctor team’s efforts were rewarded with a Merit Awards for Best Commercial Website at the Best Web LK Awards 2015, where it competed against many top corporates in the country. This was a further affirmation of the groundbreaking journey that this service has had so far, and with a growing base of over 5000 members, eDoctor is poised to be a tech savvy medical solution for every Sri Lankan in the near future.