Delyver co-founder quits BigBasket, launches health-tech startup
Afsal Salu

Afsal Salu, head of express delivery at online grocer BigBasket, has quit the company and launched a health-tech startup christened BestDoc.

Salu joined BigBasket two years ago when Delyver, the hyperlocal delivery startup that he co-founded, was acquired by the former. Salu’s new startup, BestDoc, primarily offers patient relationship management (PRM) solutions to healthcare providers and professionals.

The startup is co-founded with Fayaz Bin Abdu, former co-founder and CTO of IT solutions company Exuberant.

BestDoc offers a healthcare platform that connects different stakeholders of the ecosystem, including patients, doctors, hospitals, clinics, diagnostic centres and pharmacies.

Its flagship product ‘BestDocPlus’, which is meant for medical professionals and providers, offers a slew of services including scheduling, follow-up reminders, queue management, analytics on patient trends, online payment, centralised data system and alerts.

For patients, the app provides a directory of doctors, clinics and hospitals besides other services such as booking, real-time information on the availability of doctors, reviews and recommendations and follow-up reminders.

In addition, the company provides branding and promotions services to hospitals.

Owned and operated by BestDoc Technology Pvt Ltd, the startup is operating in five districts in Kerala. Salu said the company would expand to other states next year and would also look at launching operations overseas. The firm would focus on tier 2 and tier 3 locations alongside establishing its presence in top metros, he said.

"Our flagship product is BestDoc PRM which provides end-to-end outpatient (OP) management for hospitals. This product has gone live in a few hospitals in Kerala wherein the hospitals are now able to offer an integrated digital token to all their patients, help them book advance appointments, do self-check-in, pay online and get real-time updates on upcoming doctor appointments," he said.

The ‘patient-physician relationship management’ space has been one of the primary entry points for startups into the health-tech market. A handful of startups including Practo, Liberate, Healthians and Konsult are operating in the domain with little differentiation among them.

In September 2015, Practo had acquired hospital information management solution provider Insta Health Solutions Pvt. Ltd for $12 million in a cash and equity deal. Insta Health is used by clinics, hospitals and diagnostic labs for automating their clinical, operational and financial processes such as scheduling, registration, out-patient and in-patient management, billing, ward and bed management, diagnostics, pharmacy and inventory management among others.

A number of other startups operating in the same space have received venture capital investments recently.

Mfine, an AI chat-based doctor consultation platform co-founded by a group of serial entrepreneurs such as Myntra co-founder Ashutosh Lawania and former Myntra e-commerce platform head Prasad Kompalli, raised $1.5 million in its first round of external funding led by Stellaris Venture Partners in September this year. The AI chat-based platform will allow patients to consult doctors working with its hospital network. It will also offer other services, including doorstep sample collection for lab tests and ordering medicines.

In August, Doxper, an app that helps doctors maintain patients’ medical records, raised $750,000 in its seed round of investment led by Vidal Healthcare and GrowX Ventures. Patients can use the Doxper app to access their records, book follow-on appointments, and share reports with family. Hospitals can also use Doxper to digitise their records by integrating their HIS system.

Medlife International Pvt. Ltd, a self-funded online platform for healthcare services, recently said it plans to invest $30 million in business expansion over the next one year. Medlife offers e-consultation through its patient management software for doctors, who are automatically on-boarded upon signing up.

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