Platform Tackles Mexico’s Lack of InsuranceBy Miriam Bello | Tue, 02/08/2022 - 16:36
Q: Why was MeetingDoctors conceived as a B2B solution only?
A: MeetingDoctors provides telemedicine services that our clients can offer to their customers under their branding. We launched our operations in Spain in 2017 when we saw an opportunity in the insurance sector to create an alternate channel for teleconsultations through chat or video call. This was an optimal tool for companies that already had a large pool of clients but did not have the technology to offer telemedicine.
We create our own technology and do not rely on third parties. Our technology stands out because we bet on a model of immediate response. We have over 7 million end clients connected to our service and we are committed to responding to a chat or video call in less than two minutes. We cover over 10 medical specialties. Our services require a robust and user-friendly technology and service, which is by provided by well-trained, highly-qualified doctors on our payroll. We have a global chain with a strong base in Spain but we adapt to each country’s regulations. For the provision of electronic prescriptions or medical diagnostics, many regulations require the doctors to be local. We have near 300 doctors globally and 25-30 in Mexico. We also offer prevention services, such as nutrition, psychology, personal trainers and others, which can be managed by a professional from any country.
Q: How does Meeting Doctors manage patients who require in-person treatment?
A: We build programs depending on what the client is looking for. Insurance companies often have alliances with medical networks for in-person visits and with pharmacies for prescriptions. Our job is to build the patient’s journey to the in-person consultation, leveraging technology and people.
Q: What has been the reception to your services in Mexico?
A: The reception has been positive. We came across some particularities of Mexican culture that made telemedicine all the more important. For example, insurance penetration is remarkably low in the country, with only 7 percent of the population having medical insurance. This contrasts with the EU, Asia, the US and even other Latin American countries. The COVID-19 pandemic further strained public health services. This was an opportunity for companies that wanted to offer their employees a way to access medical services but could not afford medical insurance. Our services might not cover 100 percent of health needs but they cater to 70 percent the needs of most companies.
Q: How are you expanding your services in the country?
A: We are committed to Mexico and will offer different services to insurance and private companies for their employees and or their clients. The public sector has been slow in providing primary care so Mexico’s population stands to benefit from telemedicine. Telemedicine can even reduce the need for in-person visits in many cases.
Q: What software advances do you expect to integrate into the platform?
A: We are ensuring that everyone, from doctors to B2B and B2C clients, feels comfortable with this model. Our internal product initiative studies and implements features and services being deployed in the market, such as connected medical devices that allow users to take measurements from home.
Q: How do you keep patient information safe and make patients the owners of their data?
A: We follow the EU requirements for data protection and privacy and have been audited by many insurers and international companies. We have experts who keep up with daily developments for data protection.
Q: What are your expectations regarding client attraction for the short and medium term?
A: Many companies are exploring the incorporation of at-home medical services for their employees and customers. Globally, we serve 7 million users. In Mexico, we reach hundreds of thousands every year and we see a growing trend. The pandemic has helped us but we know that the end of the pandemic will not mean the end of telemedicine. Mexico is embracing digitization and many need medical insurance but cannot afford it.
However, Mexican regulation is not so advanced, for example there is not a unique system for medical electronic prescriptions. The social impact of telemedicine is important and viable so regulation of the sector is necessary.
Meeting Doctors is a B2B digital solution that brings medical professionals closer to patients and employees through a professional chat and telehealth tool.