CIO Zone

Netcare establishes digital unit to fast-track health tech

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SA’s largest private hospital group, Netcare, has launched a standalone digital unit, which will spearhead its digital transformation agenda.

Netcare Digital will be the catalyst the group needs to become a more technologically-driven healthcare solutions provider that improves quality of care and patient experience across its businesses, it says.

Established through a partnership with digital solutions company A2D24, the new unit will be headed by Netcare Group CIO Travis Dewing as CEO.

In a statement, the company says the new joint venture aims to produce transformational health tech solutions to deliver outstanding person-centred care.

The launch of Netcare Digital comes at a time the hospital group had been accelerating telemedicine after suffering a severe financial knock as result of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.

As COVID-19 escalates, more technologically-driven healthcare solutions are preferred and many companies are bringing out solutions to help ease the situation.

Netcare says the pandemic has placed the importance of cutting-edge technology in the delivery of healthcare in sharp relief, as institutions and enterprises embrace new systems and models to develop future-proof solutions.

“It is inevitable, with an ever-increasing range of innovative products and services, that healthcare will become a digital-first industry,” says Netcare.

Commenting on the launch of Netcare Digital, Dewing says: “Although it is still early days, I’m exceptionally pleased with the impressive progress the team has made to date. It bodes well for the future – a future in which we are confident of contributing to transformative interventions, not only on the local, but also the global healthcare stage.”

According to Netcare, together with A2D24, it has handled over 11 million screenings, and Netcare COVID-19 support systems are being primed for further expansion.

The company says having identified telehealth and practice management as areas ripe for disruption, Netcare and A2D24 launched innovative products in these segments and will continue to bring in more solutions.

The hospital group introduced Netcare VirtualCare, a telehealth platform for virtual doctor consults, saying the platform offers patients greater choice, and safety and easier access to care.

“The Netcare Digital team will continue to work tirelessly to refine and enhance them. The South African rollout of these products is already well under way, with more than 60 sites across all nine provinces equipped with the VirtualCare solution and more than 70 occupational health sites going live with practice management.”

COO of the new venture, A2D24 head Muhammad Simjee, comments: “By leveraging Netcare’s vast experience in healthcare, A2D24 has been able to scale its products and services 10 times faster through the collaboration.

“With our streamlined design processes, we’re bringing products to market faster than ever before. Netcare Digital’s establishment represents a landmark moment in South African healthcare.”

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