Nikita S @singareddynm investor @rre ventures (seed, A, B) 👩🏾‍💻 keeping tech weird on spaceship earth, serial experimenter 🤖 ex @oscarhealth @thegovlab stats @columbia Sep. 08, 2019 1 min read

China has the most developed telemedicine ecosystem. Ping An Good Doctor, famous for their AI-powered pharmacy booths, has 265M mobile users to the US's biggest telehealth startup Teladoc (20M).

India, despite being mobile-first and having a large sick population, lags adoption.

Baidu had made moves into telehealth with Baidu Doctor (similar to ZocDoc) in 2016. I expected that be a big threat to Chinese startups, taking on China's biggest internet search engine.

Interestingly Baidu closed the app in late 2017.

Another big name in Chinese teleheath is Chunyu - Spring Rain. It's a hybrid WebMD (advice and medical information) + digital consultation with a doctor. Chunyu also stores electronic health records and refers to medical providers and pharmacies. 

India has the worst doctor to patient ratio of any country, making it a perfect ground for telemedicine companies. Yet India's biggest telemedicine companies are 1MG (e-pharmacy) and Welcome Cure (homeopathic consultation, not necessarily an actual MD).

There are a host of telemed companies trying to be India's Teladoc/Ping An Good Doctor:

Lybrate (primary care, $13/consult)
Doctor Insta, Mfine (going into whitelabeling, $6/consult)
SoftBank-funded DocPrime (free teleconsult to book an IRL appointment or lab)

Last year, Softbank invested $200M in insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar Group to establish an Indian digital healthcare platform that ties in all services — pharmacy, offline consults, diagnostic labs, hospitals, and health insurance.

Even telecom carrier giant RelianceJio, which services 331M Indians, moved into teleconsultation via its JioHealthHub app. I'm not sure if this is preloaded onto RelianceJio phones but I'm very curious how many people actively use it.

Agree with Cathy, biggest barrier to adoption is cost. Healthcare is still incredibly expensive on these apps for the average Indian. Between the choice of a free state hospital/clinic or a paid app, the first often wins.

You can follow @singareddynm.


Tip: mention @threader_app on a Twitter thread with the keyword “compile” to get a link to it.

Enjoy Threader? Sign up.

Threader is an independent project created by only two developers. The site gets 500,000+ visits a month and our iOS Twitter client was featured as an App of the Day by Apple. Running this space is expensive and time consuming. If you find Threader useful, please consider supporting us to make it a sustainable project.