Healthtech start-up mfine allows users to consult doctors online

When Revathi Iyer from Mysuru wanted to consult a gynaecologist in Bengaluru, she logged onto an app, shared her problem, and within five minutes she got a call from a care team. The team, which included a junior doctor, prepared her case history for the senior doctor. By evening, Iyer could speak to her gynaecologist over a video call, without having to travel to Bengaluru and negotiate its traffic.

Enabling this is a Bengaluru-based healthtech start-up mfine, which offers on-demand consultation with doctors over video chat on the app. It partners with leading hospitals and speciality healthcare chains to offer high-quality service. 

In Bengaluru, it has tied up with 16 hospitals such as CloudNine, Aster, and Ovum. For hospitals, the app serves as a channel to funnel new patients.

‘‘We are trying to make quality health care accessible to consumers instantly,'' says Ashotosh Lawania, co-founder, mfine. ‘‘We see a huge opportunity to bring tech-driven transformation in the $50 billion primary healthcare delivery. Working with reputed providers, we are effectively creating a 'cloud clinic' where quality health care can be accessed on demand from anywhere," says Prasad Kompalli, chief executive officer and co-founder, mfine. Lawania co-founded Myntra, which was acquired by Flipkart, while Kompalli was the former technology and business head at the fashion retailer.

Last week, the start-up raised $4.2 million in a pre-Series-A round of funding from venture capital firms Prime Ventures and Stellaris Ventures and plans to use the money to enter other cities. mfine competes with other apps like DocsApp, DoctorInsta and Lybrate. But unlike others who aggregate doctors, mfine aggregates hospitals on its platform.

“Teleconsult and on-demand healthcare are poised to transform health care delivery. mfine has taken an innovative hospital-first approach where experienced doctors and specialists from established hospital brands are available directly on the app,” said Shripati Acharya, managing partner at Prime Venture Partners, said in a statement. Investors are also impressed by the traction it has achieved.

Traction

Within five months, it has done 10,000 consultations and provided early proof of its concept, which has encouraged investors to invest twice within a span of six months. Hospitals like it as 80 per cent patients coming online are first-time customers, bringing 10 per cent incremental business for them.
  
“mfine helps doctors to be more productive, process more cases in with existing data which allows them to better the quality of healthcare provided. At the same time, mfine helps these healthcare institutions grow their market penetration by saving the cost of physical centres,” says Kompalli.

Rohit M A, co-founder and managing director, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, says digital health is the future of primary health care as it offers much more convenience. ‘‘mfine's care platform is in line with our digital engagement strategy and we are excited about the new reach and the extended clinical care programme for fulfilling varied needs of our customers,'' he says. 

‘‘With mfine video consultation, I can meet my patients virtually and that makes online consultation much more easy and safe. mfine app is super simple to use with almost zero typing. I can provide detailed prescriptions on mfine including nutrition and growth chart,” Adarsh Somasekhar, chairman and medical director at Ovum Hospital said, in 
a statement.

Road ahead

The company charges Rs 500-700, the same a doctor would charge at the hospital. It shares the fee with the hospital, which keeps the bulk of it. In future, mfine hopes to make money from other services like diagnostics it plans to add. The company plans to grow 10 times this year and partner 25-35 hospitals in Bengaluru.


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