Stavros Athanasiou, President, Medgate
When Graham Bell made the first official telecommunication in 1876, little would he have thought that his invention would later pave the way for an integrated mainstream healthcare system, telehealth. As a healthcare delivery model, telehealth evolved with the growth of technology to support health consultations for people who have trouble accessing a medical centre and provide opportunities to deliver healthcare and exchange health information remotely. In this segment, Medgate, a hassle-free telehealth consultation provider, has made a mark with over 20 years of experience, having consulted over 10 million medical cases across India, the Middle East, Philippines, and Switzerland. “Medgate, in the Philippines, has served over 1.5 million customers, who are the members of our partners in the banking, health, and insurance industries since 2016,” notes Stavros Athanasiou, President of Medgate. In its attempt to provide telehealth solutions to Filipinos, Medgate had braved the challenge of overcoming the lack of awareness about telemedicine. In its years of infancy, the company engaged directly with its customers through orientations, roadshows, weekly newsletters, and extensively used social media to create awareness and engagement.
Armed with doctors specialised in internal medicine, family medicine, paediatrics, and OB Gynecology, Medgate allows medical co-management of a case, where doctors with multiple specialisations can consult a single case. This practice ensures high-quality teleconsultation along with monitoring and management of the quality of service delivery.
Medgate also complies with data privacy act of 2012 by recording each of the teleconsultations and encrypting the same for security, and even if any private medical data is required for the treatment, the patient must give consent for the doctor to collect and incorporate in the process.
Medgate diagnoses and treats up to 80 percent of all cases, as its statistically-based clinical guidelines driven by AIDA artificial intelligence engine help doctors. Hence, the key difference between Medgate and other telemedicine providers remains to be the high resolution rate of cases. In addition, Medgate’s core system relieves doctors of relying solely on their personal clinical experience and allows them to leverage the consultation data from over 10 million medical cases, as it provides better quality consultations with higher resolution rates.
Further, concerning the ongoing pandemic, Medgate remains one of the only two companies that were selected through the rigorous accreditation by the Philippine Department of Health (DoH) and National Privacy Commission to deliver free teleconsultation services to Filipinos and mitigate the spread of COVID-19. During this time, the company handled around 70,000 calls at no cost to the caller or the DoH. Medgate was also selected by the Swiss government and the Abu Dhabi government to provide teleconsultations to their citizens over other platforms.
With regard to partnerships and collaborations, Medgate partners with leading employee benefit organisations such as HMOs and medical insurers that enable telemedicine to be accessible to millions of Filipinos at a volume-driven affordable rate. The company also interacts with multiple medical associations for the enhancement of telemedicine adoption amongst doctors in the Philippines. In addition, Dr. Andy Fischer, the Founder and CEO of Medgate, who is also the president of the International Society for Telemedicine and E-health—a global NGO that works with the WHO and several national telemedicine programs—establishes and validates advanced protocols, processes, and methodologies for the advancement of telemedicine worldwide.
Medgate further plans to expand in the key ASEAN markets. Stavros further adds, “Medgate will continue to innovate and grow telemedicine. And with the advent of 5G broadband, telemedicine will have an immersive high-resolution video experience which would enhance the patient experience.”