Private hospital group Netcare yesterday unveiled the first iteration of its mobile app.
The Netcare app, says the group, forms part of its move from traditional siloed and episodic-led care, to an ongoing engagement-led model of care. It aims to enhance the patient journey and empower users in the management of their healthcare, according to a statement.
Sonja Winter, chief marketing and communications officer at Netcare, says the app’s features include emergency response, digital medical record management and streamlined hospital admission processes, to begin with.
Winter explains: “One of the primary features that was developed on the Netcare app is a contact button for Netcare 911, which also includes a 60-second call back option, and allows the emergency medical response operator to immediately geolocate the exact position of the user without the need for any additional steps, such as text messages.
“The app also includes an ambulance tracker, providing regular updates on estimated time of arrival.”
As part of the enhanced patient journey, Winter notes this includes access to consolidated medical records provided through the ‘summary of care’ functionality.
“Netcare 911 is the first of our operations to provide a digital ‘summary of care’ – a digital record summarising the emergency care patients received, which can be viewed on the Netcare app.
“Patients will be sent an SMS and/or e-mail after receiving emergency medical care, prompting them to download the Netcare app free of charge, to view their summary of care.
“This is the beginning of providing patients with more integrated and lasting informational access, with the Netcare app becoming the central repository of their medical records. This functionality will also extend across other divisions in the group.”
According to Winter, the app enables users to make an appointment with a healthcare provider, via the appointment booking feature. It is integrated with doctors’ schedules within Netcare’s primary care division.
“The app-based booking system allows the user to view available slots and book to see a primary care practitioner via a secure platform that enables online consultation, as well as digital medical certificates and prescriptions, at affordable set rates.
“Those needing to book with a specialist can also interact with Netcare Appointmed via the app, for assistance in finding the most appropriate healthcare provider to address their concern.”
Winter indicates the app simplifies the Netcare hospital admissions process by allowing digital pre-admission, including uploading medical scheme information and identity documents.
“Upon arriving at a Netcare hospital or Netcare Medicross day theatre, you need simply visit the online admissions desk and present your digital admission card on the app for a faster and entirely paperless process.”
The Netcare app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store, App Store, Huawei AppGallery and Microsoft Store.