Think of a product morphing into something much bigger when married with a platform. Something like iPod and iTunes. Neurosynaptic Communications, a remote medicine start-up, is nowhere near as wildly successful as the Apple Inc. blockbusters but its social impact is perhaps in the same league.
The Neurosynaptic product, called ReMeDi (short for Remote Medical Device), can be installed anywhere with Internet connectivity and has been designed to work in the most rugged of Indian conditions. The doctor at the other end, logging in through a video link, can measure parameters like body temperature, blood pressure, pulse rate and record an electro-cardio graph. Its electronic stethoscope captures chest sounds and a central database stores patient records.
CO-FOUNDERS: Sameer Sawarkar and Rajeev Kumar
INNOVATION: Move beyond just offering affordable telemedicine solutions to a platform for various services and create an ecosystem for delivery of health care in remote locations.
MODEL:Working on various models with partners ranging from revenue-sharing, technology fees and leasing arrangements.
SCALE: Has supplied 400 remote medical devices since 2007. Revenues (not disclosed) increased five-fold last year and the company hopes to double it this year.
Patients are charged Rs 10 if they are below the poverty line (with WHP contributing Rs 20 each towards consultation and giving Rs 30 to the local centre operator) and Rs 50, if they are not so poor. At the moment, WHP also subsidises costs incurred for doctors, counsellors and paramedics and hopes to spread costs over time with increased volumes. With third generation mobile phone networks or WiMax data networks this year or next, Gopalakrishnan feels, ReMeDi could go mobile and help the spread of telemedicine in India.