Kochi: Frequent hospital visits with his mother, who was suffering from joint pain, made Mohamed Jasim realise a collective pain point of patients as well as medical professionals.
Long waiting hours despite pre-booked appointments steal patients’ time while a booking system that is often interrupted by multiple reasons makes a doctor’s life chaotic. Jasim, an MTech from Malappuram, decided to address the pain point with a second startup and the nascent company is gaining traction in the medical field of Kerala, slowly and steadily.
UnQ Technologies, incubated under the Kerala Startup Mission (KSUM), helps patients and medical practitioners with what it calls a user-friendly clinic management software that streamlines appointment scheduling, eliminating long waiting time and unplanned doctor hours.
UnQ’s clients are hospitals and clinics. What makes the UnQ platform different from other similar products is the options it gives to a patient to plan her hospital visit better and thus save her time. According to the company, unlike a usual hospital booking where a patient gets a fixed slot, UnQ keeps updated those who have booked an appointment about the real-time consultation situation of the doctor.
The platform sends a link to the patient with which she can track the consultation progress. The platform also offers a predicted appointment time which enables patients to start their journey accordingly. A major feature of the platform is that it helps patients book the time for prescribed or possible procedures also. This helps doctors streamline their workflow better and patients reduce their waiting time. More importantly, the system, by reducing crowds in front of OP counters, ensures social distancing at a time when concerns over viral infections are rising.
Jasim started his company in Bengaluru in mid-2019 and spent over a year in research and development. He tried to understand the problem better by doing a field survey with 50 doctors. His interactions with those in his family who are into medical profession also helped him.
“Long waiting time at hospitals is a global issue. It’s primarily because time management is unsolved in service sector unlike in product sector. UnQ wanted to address this issue. We do our problem-solving in three steps. First step is during booking. Then it helps hospitals with an intelligent inventory management system. This helps doctors accommodate other appointments in between without taking away the time of those who have already booked. The third step is live queue management where doctors or hospital staff can update their consultation situation on the system. The patients get a predicted appointment time based on this. We also help patients plan their journey better by updating them about the traffic situation with Google map,” Jasim, co-founder and CEO, UnQ Technologies, said.
The platform also allows doctors to transfer appointments. The company has also set up kiosks at client hospitals which patients can use directly to make appointments.
The company’s Kerala operations are based in Kozhikode. It has clients in Kerala and the Gulf. Jasim said his firm will be focussing on the Kerala market for the next two years.
Abdul, a data science engineer, is UnQ’s co-founder and advisor while Rashid Edassery is the chief technology officer.
(Startup Saturday is Onmanorama’s weekend series featuring promising startups from Kerala. Find the previous stories here)