Local telehealth champion Dale Trotman has scored yet again in his quest to help make outpatient healthcare services more accessible and affordable to people across Barbados and the rest of the world.
The founder and Chief Executive Officer of MedRegis have entered into a strategic partnership with United States-based telemedicine solutions firm Doxy.me, allowing for the storage and retrieval of medical information by healthcare professionals, and the access to outpatient care by the billions of people around the globe through a simple platform.
The Barbados-based MedRegis, which was first introduced in 2016, is a suite of applications developed to revolutionise the way health records are documented, stored and shared.
“The partnership allows me to integrate telehealth into our electronic health record, which will be an added benefit to our clients.
It also allows me to offer telehealth as a standalone for clinics and doctors’ offices that would want to use telehealth but may be using another electronic health record, or they could start with telehealth before they utilise our electronic health record,” he explained.
It will also allow Doxy.me services to be expanded to medical professionals, enterprises and clinics here in Barbados and the region at discounted rates.
Trotman told Barbados TODAY that while the focus of MedRegis has been on the Caribbean market since its introduction in 2017 and commercialisation in February 2019, the partnership will now allow the services to be offered anywhere in the world.
He said the COVID-19 pandemic should serve as a wake-up call for local and regional authorities to take the matter of telehealth more seriously. “Healthcare must evolve and that evolution has to be digital,” he said.
“As we know with the COVID pandemic every appointment doesn’t need to be a physical one and that is where telehealth comes into play.
Doctors’ offices and clinics could strategise and create a plan where they organise and say ‘for some of these appointments we don’t need to see these patients physically’,” he said.
He also noted that through telehealth, training and consultations could be provided to individuals anywhere in the world.
Though somewhat concerned about the slow pace at which the region was moving towards the expansion of telehealth, Trotman said he was pleased he was making some progress.
There are currently clinics in Barbados and Trinidad using the MedRegis service.
“We are really looking to scale up now,” he said, pointing out that a lot of work had gone into research and development, testing and fine-tuning.
Trotman said he was hoping in the coming months, to expand the use of MedRegis in Jamaica, St Lucia, Guyana, and St Vincent and the Grenadines as well as countries in Africa.
“Privately, we have been getting some good reception from clinics. A lot of them have seen the process of the application and they understand what we want to do in the region. The overall feedback is great,” he said.
Trotman said he believed outpatient healthcare will become fully digitalised in the future and he was hopeful Barbados and the Caribbean will be among the first to achieve this feat.
Varun Arora, Director of International Business with Doxy.me, told Barbados TODAY he was pleased with the progress MedRegis has shown over the last few years as it relates to health records.
Doxy.me, which is currently in 156 countries with over 1.14 million users worldwide, has been around for the past seven years.
Arora said while the majority of Doxy.me users are based in North America and Latin America, the hope was to expand the service to the Caribbean to ensure that healthcare was more accessible and affordable.
“We have seen a growth in the Caribbean of users organically finding us. We want to prioritise this region of the world. Island nations have great healthcare but access to care sometimes is a challenge because of limitations of infrastructure and natural geographical reasons.
“When you have a technology like what we have been working with for the past seven years, you are able to connect patients with their healthcare provider in a way that is convenient for the patient and the provider,” he explained.
He believed healthcare will become more hybrid in the near future.
“I think that healthcare has grown and has changed quite a bit just over the last seven or ten years in the technology space. I think we need to democratise healthcare so that patients can have access to care wherever they are and whenever they need it,” said Arora. [email protected]