Pune-based MedCords is a telemedicine startup with a particular focus on rural India. The company has a unique approach of partnering with local pharmacies (or Sehat Sathis) to onboard patients and thereby leveraging their patients directory to onboard doctors, this will help to digitise healthcare In rural India.

The Sehat Sathis acts as touchpoints for patients to digitally manage their medical records, and access comprehensive virtual doctor consultations through smartphones or a telephone helpline. The health records collected at these points also enable MedCords to deliver healthcare insights using data science. The digitise healthcare in rural India for medical records initiative is currently offered as a free service. However, the company does have plans to charge patients for this in the future.

MedCords has a network of 800 Sehat Sathis or pharmacies spread across rural and semi-urban India. According to Mehta, Sehat Sathis in rural areas join MedCords because it helps them to increase sales through repeat customer orders and medicine sales. It also allows them to expand the reach of their store.

Such efforts in using data to bring actionable insights to the healthcare ecosystem will surely improve the healthcare quotient and bring maturity to the industry in India. With the rising disposable income and health awareness, as well as easier access to insurance coupled with lifestyle and stress-related diseases, there’s definitely a need to improve access and use digital tools to connect citizens with healthcare providers and businesses.