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5 crore Indians accessed healthcare online in the last three months

The last three months have radically changed people’s lifestyles, with everyone’s daily routines facing a major setback. We’ve seen a massive increase in the number of consultations that have taken place via our telemedicine platform.While millennials take the lead using telemedicine for their health-related queries, the last two months have encouraged people aged above 60 to use the platform as well to get their health-related queries answered by a certified medical practitioner rather than resorting to self-medication.
GP, Gynaecology and Dermatology remained the top three specialities accounting for 51% of the overall consultations. There has also been a significant rise in queries around other
specialities including ENT, mental health, pediatrics, gastroenterology and ophthalmology.
While the usage of telemedicine is on a steady rise across metro cities, our demographic insights show that the awareness is rising in Tier-II and Tier-III cities including Hoshiarpur, Karnal, Bhimavaram, Katni, and Durgapur to name a few. This situation is different from the pre-COVID era where more than 70% of the consults were only from metros.
As we prepare to step into the “new normal” where cities are now easing restrictions and citizens are preparing to step back into a different world, healthcare is going to be seen through a different lens. How we deliver accessible, affordable and convenient healthcare to the remotest parts of India is the next big focus. Telemedicine along with other healthcare technologies like online appointment booking, to avoid crowding, will play a huge role going forward.

Practo’s first-ever Insights Report is based on transactions by 5 crore users in the period of Mar 1 2020 – May 31st 2020.

 Some key insights:

  • Gynaecology, GP and Dermatology emerged as the top most consulted specialities: Together, they accounted for 51% of the overall consultations
  • Tele-ENT witnessed 600% growth: Seasonal allergies were confused with  COVID-19 symptoms
  • Tele-Orthopedics was among the top consulted speciality by millenials: Bad work postures resulted in back pain among millennials leading to an increase of 400%
  • Tele-Gastroenterology received a large number of consults from first time users: Majority of the consults were related to digestive problems caused by a sudden drop in active lifestyles
  • Tele-Dermatology witnessed a growth in newer set of queries on skin issues caused by stress:Stress has been having an adverse effect on people’s skin, hair, nails apart from the regular issues that are common during summer
  • Tele-Ophthalmology saw the highest growth among other specialities, grew by 700%: With a significant amount of time being spent in front of screens and the rise in irregular sleeping patterns,queries related to eye and vision increased significantly
  • Mental health concerns rose notably due to uncertainty, loss of income, and   job-related pressure besides COVID-19 fears 
  • One in every three consults from women were for Gynaecology
  • Delay in immunization worries parents of newborns, Tele-Paediatrics witnesses 350% growth
  • COVID-19 continues to be India’s top most concern:Unsurprisingly, concerns related to COVID-19 grew by 200% with 50% of all  GP consults accounted for Coronavirus related symptoms

Telehealth has multiple applications, optimal care and virtual care is possible and extremely helpful in a pandemic scenario like COVID-19. It uses high definition transmission and clarity to provide rapid, accurate and real time consultation from professionals with expertise. Healthcare professionals can evaluate, diagnose and treat in a seamless environment. Patients are proactively using healthcare to manage their health and telehealth is a great alternative and has the potential to reach exponential levels”, Dr C M A Belliappa, General Physician, Bangalore.

 

 

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