Virtual health models for patient-friendly, integrated care
Healthcare providers all over the world were forced to hasten the creation of virtual healthcare services to fulfill the demands of their patients when the Covid-19 pandemic struck. Mediclinic Middle East has developed a suite of products using the lessons learned during this time to provide customers with convenient care, together with new options for the insurance market. The MENA Telehealth Conference is presently taking place in Dubai, where Mediclinic Middle East is displaying its industry-leading selection of integrated virtual health services.
Mediclinic Middle East’s virtual healthcare services include:
Patients may conveniently schedule and manage their in-person and online appointments with their preferred Mediclinic doctors using the MyMediclinic 24×7 app. Since the app’s inception at the beginning of 2021, it has been downloaded by 300,000 patients, with more than two million sessions and 600,000 appointments booked.
With Mediclinic’s telemedicine service, patients can virtually consult a doctor of their choosing. Since the service’s debut in 2020, more than 100,000 patients have completed nearly 300,000 teleconsultations. Mediclinic Al Murjan Hospital in Jeddah will open soon, bringing the service to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Care Collaboration Centre
The Care Collaboration Centre (CCC) which was established in June 2022, offers centralised virtual healthcare services to patients in all regions of the UAE. A team of consultant family medicine doctors, nurses, and administrators provide a wide range of clinical services, including a virtual primary care clinic, chronic disease management, remote patient monitoring, corporate wellness, and timely care coordination across Mediclinic’s extended network of clinics, hospitals and other care settings.
Through the MyMediclinic 24×7 app and website interface, the virtual clinic provides same-day consultations and a gatekeeping function for primary care.
All CCC physicians are highly qualified consultant family medicine doctors with specialised training in overseeing their patients’ overall health. When necessary, they may recommend medication, which will be delivered to the patient’s door. On the basis of the patient’s desired location, they can also refer patients to any of Mediclinic’s 20+ clinics and seven hospitals.
Chronic disease management
A chronic disease management service called Mediclinic at Home combines the best aspects of virtual and physical healthcare in a seamless manner to offer patients a personalised treatment plan and integrated care from the convenience of their home or place of employment.
The initiative was started during the Covid-19 pandemic in cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Public Health Center and Department of Health for the ‘chronic at risk’ population. More than 1,000 patients were enrolled at this time.
Using the Mediclinic Huma app, which keeps track of their vital signs and symptoms, Mediclinic at Home gives patients the tools they need to easily monitor and manage chronic diseases and take charge of their health. A virtual care team that supports them offers virtual nurse rounds, tele-consultations, scheduling appointments, follow-ups, and pharmacy home delivery.
Early in 2022, Mediclinic adopted a virtual gatekeeping mechanism to give its 11,000 members including employee policy holders and their dependents priority access to primary care physicians. This concept has been effective in reducing utilisation, and insurance providers are now adopting it to give access to high-quality treatment for policies with high utilisation and unaffordable cost constraints.
Virtual care is used to manage patient conditions in accordance with scientifically supported medical recommendations, and referrals are only made when necessary. The virtual gatekeeping service manages acute cases, chronic diseases, health maintenance, and maintenance of a healthy lifestyle to provide a seamless and practical treatment pathway. To address a major issue of insurance providers and assure properly managed care, it strives to minimise utilisation and unnecessary referrals, which is crucial to the sustainability of the UAE’s healthcare sector. Currently, the Mediclinic Virtual Clinic manages over 75 per cent of coordinated care appointments virtually, eliminating the need for further referral.
Willie Willemse, director business development, Mediclinic Middle East, said: “In keeping with Mediclinic’s mission to improve people’s lives, our strategic goal is to provide cost-effective, high-quality care and exceptional client experiences across the continuum of care. We have worked hard to adopt a wide range of virtual healthcare models that provide value to both our patients and our partners and will help us realise our mission of becoming the partner of choice for all of their healthcare requirements. We are excited to present this unrivalled set of virtual services at the MENA Telehealth Conference.”
Ahmad Awada, senior manager, virtual health, said: “In 2022, we learned how widely telemedicine had been adopted in the absence of Covid-19. Moving forward, in 2023, we intend to integrate telemedicine into insurance programmes to offer patients a range of advantages, including better patient engagement, increased access to integrated healthcare services in both virtual and physical settings, and improved primary and secondary care coordination. Establishing sustainability throughout the spectrum of care is our aim.
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