09 July 2013 | News | By BioSpectrum Bureau
Thailand hospital trials mHealth application
Thai patients will begin receiving SMS appointment reminders direct to their mobile phones
Singapore: Thai patients will begin receiving SMS appointment reminders direct to their mobile phones as Bangkok's Vibhavadi Hospital commences a trial of New Zealand company Vensa Health's mHealth+3 platform.
The trial will automate and manage appointment reminders for the hospital and aims to deliver millions in annual savings by reducing the number of missed appointments each year by around 50 percent. The hospital also aims to improve patient outcomes by improving attendance for the 200,000 appointments scheduled annually.
Mr Chaisit Viriyamettakul, managing director of Vibhavadi Hospital, a private hospital in Bangkok said, "New Zealand has an established reputation in mHealth and Vensa is the market leader in the New Zealand healthcare system. We expect to be able to translate that success and use Vensa's system to improve service integration at Vibhavadi and ensure more patients attend the appointments they need at the right time to stay well."
Vensa's system has been integrated into Vibhavadi Hospital's health information system to enable personalized SMS appointment reminders to be sent to patients and for replies. The hospital serves more than 20,000 inpatients and 300,000 outpatients a year providing a range of medical and surgical services.
Dr Aurchat Kanjanapitak, managing director, Ramkhamhaeng Hospital Group said, "We can improve hospital workflow by prompting patients to respond to appointment reminders to confirm appointments. This will result in better service delivery and greater efficiencies as well as significant savings."
Ms Karen Campbell, New Zealand's Trade Commissioner to Thailand, said, "It's great to see a New Zealand company leading the way in the Thai health market and providing an innovative solution to Vibhavadi Hospital, a world class hospital. New Zealand is gaining a reputation in Health IT with companies like Orion Health and Precept also providing great solutions for hospitals and other healthcare providers in Thailand and around the world."
Ms Patamaporn Buppakasikorn, project director, Vibhavadi Hospital said, "Over the two month pilot we'll be using the system across five departments, which represents around 15% to 20% of appointments scheduled. This will allow us to confirm the effectiveness of the system in terms of appointment attendance and we'll also be able to assess savings to the hospital in terms of time and resources."
Mr Ahmad Jubbawey, CEO of Vensa Health said, "We're delighted as Vibhavadi Hospital is trailing our mHealth solution, with a local telco AIS providing the telecom infrastructure. We have around 70 percent of the market using our innovative system in New Zealand. We're now focused on leveraging this position in South East Asia."
Mr Jubbawey added that the opportunity is a global one as hospitals look for innovative technology to improve business and enhance healthcare outcomes. "Our views are that the problems that our mHealth solutions address are universal. We're excited at the opportunity to demonstrate success for Vibhavadi Hospital," he said.