Posted on April 2, 2020 by staff

‘Coronavirus pandemic is beginning of healthcare tech revolution’


The CEO and founder of leading UK HealthTech firm Now Healthcare Group says we are in the midst of a digital healthcare revolution accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Entrepreneur Lee Dentith leads the group’s three app-based offerings – two video-based healthcare consultation apps for corporate and private healthcare, and Now Patient.

The Now Patient app works in partnership with the NHS to provide 15 million people access to remote GP consultations and free medication delivery, accounting for £7bn of the NHS medicines budget per year.

“[The NHS] is too over-stretched, as we are seeing at present,” Dentith tells BusinessCloud. “We are an NHS-approved pharmacy and have been working with Matt Hancock and the government to push the digital agenda and make it a key component of patient care for some time.

“The population is growing, people are living for longer, over 15 million people are living with chronic care conditions and the health service cannot function the way it has been.”

The firm’s digital pharmacy uses dispensing robots to speed up its service, making it possible to distribute up to 500,000 prescriptions per month.

Automation allows the dispensing process to happen in a matter of seconds. The firm’s process also allows for the tracking of medication volumes, allowing it to ensure it can plan and fulfil or adapt to the demand at busy periods.

“This is just the start of a digital healthcare revolution,” says Dentith. “I think the present climate and day-to-day developments will hugely impact where we go over the next 12 months.”

He says the firm’s plan for the next year is to evolve and adapt in order to continue support for NHS through the pandemic.

“The health of the nation is at the heart of our business and if we can help make lives easier or save them, then we want to part of that.

“More than anything, we want to continue to ease access to healthcare for so many, through innovative solutions.”

“We are all creatures of habit and find it hard to adapt to change, unless there becomes a need to do so – like the current health pandemic has presented.”

Dentith says most of the firm’s patients are over 60 and have underlying health conditions, relying on two or more repeat medications per day.

These patients, many of whom struggle to leave the house, have been of paramount importance to Now Healthcare.

“Our marketing and communications have been about education and carefully building trust and confidence and letting people know how our app can help save time and make their lives easier,” he says.

Still, the over-60s ‘technophobe’ trope is untrue, he says. Apps are second nature to the generation most frequently using the robot-powered, app-based medication delivery service.

“It is a myth that this generation are technophobes. Many use mobiles and devices daily to communicate with their families and using apps like ours is starting to become more second nature.”