A team of three young people, work relentlessly to eliminate the barrier between patients and doctors of Bangladesh to bring better quality and faster healthcare for all by providing a hassle-free, innovative and data-integrated healthcare journey for doctors and patients. The aim is to empower health care, together, through their online platform PlexusD, writes Farhin Ahmed Twinkle
THE entire concept of PlexusD came in when the founder, Nazim Mahmud’s mother got wrong treatment due to the lack of information and she had to suffer from kidney failure. He experienced the pain of a patient and a struggle of a doctor and realised that something needed to be done to maintain the health care eco-system. He wanted to bring the doctors and patients under one roof.
With the rise of epidemics and the strength it reincarnates with, technology comes in action to bring it to an end. However, does it come to an end? No. The war between epidemics and advanced technology continues. This leads to the fact that people now need to be more alert and cautious about their health. Any single-issue regarding health should not be taken lightly.
In a developing country like Bangladesh, we often hear how our healthcare system is a mess, prolonged and due to which many lose out on their lives. This is where the question arises how one can be eager to go for a follow-up when it takes ages to get an appointment? Let’s be real, we all have gone through the agony of waiting.
To get an appointment, in a serial to meet the doctor who is never on time or to get our reports from a medical centre which takes hours and sometimes days to come is really frustrating. Due to this hassle, many unfortunate ones get to know about their disease at the very last moment, which profoundly puts a negative impact on them.
Moreover, we end up blaming the entire healthcare system for being late. Where technology and life remain outdated, it is obvious to have a slow and lagging healthcare eco-system. An outbreak of any epidemics ends up taking lives of many because, by the time a solution approaches, it is too late. Hence, the need for a faster and better healthcare eco-system is compulsory to save lives.
So, looking into the depth of pain and hassle of both parties, a health tech startup, called PlexusD, came into existence with its revolutionary cloud-based healthcare networking platform and application. PlexusD aims to solve all the healthcare-related problems starting from making an appointment digitally to saving your medical records by providing cloud back-up, e-prescriptions and digital billings for you.
‘PlexusD acts as your healthcare partner. Before, during, or after an illness, whenever you need it, PlexusD is always there with its services,’ said Rizvee Sheikh, the co-founder of the company.
It started in September 2015, with extensive industry and market research. With a resilient attitude, PlexusD faced all the struggles ahead with a hope of helping the healthcare eco-system, so that no one has to lose their lives due to lack of consultation.
By 2017, PlexusD was launched officially with a website of their own, (www.plexusd.com). However, due to some team issue internally, they had to pause it for a while. Although by that time, PlexusD was conducting a prototype test on 5-6 clients to gauge the market, its problems, and demands.
By January 2019, they re-launched the website, which still is running reliable and fast. On 15th April 2019 official PlexusD app was launched and within a day, there were more than 1500 downloads.
Within six months of its commercial operation, PlexusD is currently affiliated with 25 chambers, 200 doctors, and 5600 unique patients by catering 100-120 appointments per day and 15000-16000 users per month.
Even when it reduces the chances of errors taking place, there is always a question about the security of users’ information. PlexusD follows policies that are based on HIPAA (Health Insurance Profitability and Accountability Act of 1996), which makes sure that only the users can access the data. The doctors get access to the data only when one sets an appointment and that too for a period of 24 hours.
The biggest obstacle that we confronted while beginning to work with the idea was teambuilding. This is particularly hard if you have never run or dealt with a team, yet regardless of whether you have management experience.
Picking the right team for a startup is stressful and exhausting. Before PlexusD started, I, along with six other individuals, had built a team and launched a startup named ‘Docomedi’ where we had invested BDT 3 lakhs. However, there raised issues like contradictory opinions and conflicts which led up to losing our investment.
It is not enough to find candidates who fill specific roles. You need to consider their cost to the business, their cultural fit, and how they will work as part of team.
Another obstacle that we deal with is not having enough time to study and spend with my family. My father lives in abroad, and I stay at our office, leaving my mother alone with my two younger brothers who are school going students.
Additionally, I am an undergraduate student in my final years having the pressure of graduating. Another co-founder lives with his family, but his father is a kidney patient who needs weekly dialysis treatment.
Boldly Go! Bet on your abilities. Thirst for Learning — be a student of the opportunity. I find these core values most relatable because I have always wanted to learn good things from people and shape my characteristics accordingly. I believe smart are those who know when to grab the opportunity and seize the moment.
The platform follows an integrated industry system. When someone needs assistance regarding a particular medical problem, they can post it on the app or website. And out of the pool of 150 doctors the ones who are specialised on that issue will get a notification on their end and assist immediately.
For doctors, it is an opportunity to engage potential patients and bring them to their chambers. When the patients connect with the doctors through the app or website, they get to set an appointment with their desired doctor. Upon arrival at the doctor’s chamber, the representative there collects the patients’ medical data on the software, and it gets uploaded on the drive instantly.
Then, a brochure is given to them, which portrays six essential services that PlexusD offers — smart appointment and real time estimation, e-prescription, digital billing, online report, medicine reminder and cloud back-up. Patients with long term disease would get follow up reminder of upcoming appointment dates.
‘If we want to change the healthcare industry of this country, it is not a simple thing. Digitising a single hospital will not do the job. Something that can change the whole scenario is connecting all the stakeholders in the healthcare industry. As the current healthcare eco-system is failing to do that, the healthcare industry is improving slowly. Everyone thinks of a prescription software or appointment software, but they do not think of the other branches that are linked to this. PlexusD aims to cover all the branches, and that is why we are optimistic about changing the healthcare scenario.’ said Nazim Mahmud, the CEO of PlexusD.
‘Launching any entrepreneurial venture is risky, and building an incredible organisation is about solving one problem after the next. I believe what makes me the best fit for this role is my critical thinking and risk resilience aptitudes. These help me to stay calm and take significant decisions, even in crucial situations. As an entrepreneur, I know, I am in the driver’s seat, and subsequently, do not have room for procrastination or indecision. So, I must be proactive in my approaches to everything and willing to steer,’ said Nazim Mahmud.
Rizvee Sheikh, co-founder and chief marketing officer added, ‘I know and do settle on choices and seize the moment. Unless not only this indecisiveness will stall progress, but they can also cause me to miss crucial opportunities that could move our business toward success.’
‘I believe in risk assessment as by thoroughly researching the business idea, industry, and market, the conceivable dangers can be mitigated. Thus, we have decided to do a beta test and start the venture with a pilot project before starting commercial operations. So that we can re-design the product with the idea of human centred design, said Sarwar Jahan, the head of technology while sharing about the team’s coordinated efforts.
Farhin Ahmed Twinkle is the senior executive of business department at PlexusD
Want stories like this in your inbox?
Sign up to exclusive daily email
More Stories from Icon