Image provided by DoctorGuide
Dr. Now, a South Korean telemedicine service platform, has enjoyed a surge in transactions during the Covid-19 pandemic that has made people with less severe illness turn to contactless medical support more.
The company said on Tuesday the monthly transactions of its member users surpassed 100 million won ($84,000) in August, up 40 percent from the previous month, serving as a potential profit channel for individual clinics and pharmacies whose sales were hit due to fewer patient visits amid the pandemic.
The Korean government currently allows for non-face-to-face healthcare services between physicians and patients only on a temporary basis in response to the coronavirus outbreak. Under the current Medical Service Act in Korea, healthcare professionals must see patients and prescribe medications in person.
Dr. Now said the pandemic situation has contributed to the introduction of telemedicine into pediatrics, otolaryngology and other stagnant clinics, and to even distributions of prescriptions among pharmacies not associated with hospitals.
Health facilities in partnership with Dr. Now saw their July sales soar over 350 percent on average from the previous month.
Dr. Now said it has applied a zero-fee policy for its partner hospitals, clinics and pharmacies from the beginning, which has helped it recruit more members. In addition, it is widening free support for members, including software, tablet, and safety packages required for remote medical services.
Dr. Now has been in collaboration with some 150 hospitals, clinics and pharmacies in Korea to provide telemedicine and prescribed drug delivery services in various health specialties. As of August, the number of active users of the app is 110,000 per month, with more than 300,000 cumulative downloads.
By Woo Soo-min and Minu Kim
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]