HealthAide: Augmenting the Use of Health Information Powered by AI in Patients’ Welfare

Barry Nguyen

HealthAide.com.au is a free Australian health information website that identifies useful health technology solutions supported by crowdsourced expert content. To encourage adoption of health technology and gain traction, HealthAide provides marketing services to GP, specialists and allied health clinics in the form of email, social media and content marketing. The company is receiving an increase in interest in providing content for GP, specialist and allied health clinic newsletters and blogs.

HealthAide’s vision is to organize the world’s health information to augment its use by health professionals and patients. It is doing this through accelerating patient adoption of health technology solutions.

HealthAide was born out of frustration, by the lack of credible health technology resources available online to research and advise the patients. There are currently over 160 solutions organized into medical conditions and health concerns on the website, accessible by the public for free. Leveraging Australia as a pilot country, the company has international expansion plans to the USA, UK and Canada.

 

Visionary Leadership

Co-founder and CEO Barry Nguyen has engaged world-class technology and startup advisors to assist HealthAide in achieving its vision. This has included high profile technology entrepreneurs from Silicon Valley, machine learning engineers and data scientists, and complementary successful health technology businesses as partners. Barry has accelerated the startup journey to achieving product-market fit through ensuring agility, being an expert content producer, and mobilizing his industry network of early adopters to provide a short product development feedback loop, proving the market value of the HealthAide offerings, and now finalizing a sustainable and scalable business model.

 

Aiming for Technological Evolution

HealthAide is currently working on new datasets, with the aim of developing commercially sensitive artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms, which assist doctors and allied health professionals with patient information prescription.

 

Influencing Healthcare Through Disruption

According to Barry Nguyen, big data, AI and machine learning is already impacting healthcare in many ways including:

• Population health to improve public policy and advocacy

• Personalizing medicine improving health outcomes

• Automating tasks to reduce administrative burden

• Clinical decision-making support to reduce diagnostic errors

• Chat bots to improve patient engagement

• Digital therapeutics to treat medical conditions

• Performing menial clinical tasks to enable health professionals to provide higher value services

• Automating tasks to improve billing and payment processes

• Robotics are assisting clinicians with tasks such as physical rehabilitation and surgery

 

Partnerships Enhancing the Credibility

Barry Nguyen believes that an innovative company is one which has an optimistic vision of the future, and solves a real and difficult social problem, with a unique and defensible solution. It also needs to be commercially sustainable for its shareholders and have a long-term view.

Corporate partnerships have been achieved with companies such as Garmin to improve the startup’s credibility whilst leveraging their resources, as they are interested in playing in the healthcare market.

 

Pragmatic Feedbacks and Recognitions

HealthAide was a successful graduate of the prestigious 2017 MAP Velocity Program (University of Melbourne) and Melbourne Health Accelerator (Royal Melbourne Hospital).

The company is receiving an organic increase in interest from GP, specialist and allied health clinics in Australia. They are providing HealthAide with positive feedback regarding its solutions as it solves some real issues operating a healthcare clinic.

Firstly, healthcare clinics are generally time poor, so are not aware of the latest in internet marketing. As they are often busy caring for their patients and managing their own staff members, they have very little time and resources in learning and thinking about ways to grow their business.

Secondly, even the ones who are aware of e-mail marketing software solutions such as MailChimp, are often reluctant to implement an e-mail newsletter strategy as content is generally hard to uniquely create or even curate from a relative unstructured internet resource.

Overcoming Challenges

Getting the right team together has been a very challenging task for Barry. It is important to ensure all team members are aligned and passionate about making the vision a reality, with complementary skills, where the sum of all contributions multiplies in work output and value.

 

Optimistic Approach Towards Future Prospects

HealthAide is still in very early phases of the application of artificial intelligence in healthcare but it is here to stay, and the winners will be the organizations with influence over high quality and larger datasets. Over time, it will become more regulated by the government and peak bodies, underpinned by good ethics to encourage its appropriate use. It will be increasingly adopted by health professionals as they recognize its value with increasing awareness and body of research evidence to back it up its safety and effectiveness.

Barry believes that healthcare is going through a revolution similar to 90 years ago when antibiotics changed the way patients were treated. Technology is in the same embryonic phase where products are being developed that lack evidence for use but anecdotally, clear benefits can be seen.

Physicians who are not in the know, fear the sound of AI. Fearful of the risk of use of technology to patient wellbeing or them becoming redundant in a few years, as computers become more powerful.

“What HealthAide believes is that the physician who adopts AI to augment their clinical practice will be successful in the long term. This change in mindset however will take time, and the team at HealthAide is taking a soft approach in breaking down barriers to health technology adoption amongst physicians and their patients,” he mentioned

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