The Jakarta Post
Jakarta / Wed, May 20, 2020 / 02:09 pm
Many major hospital operators in Indonesian have launched their own teleconsultation services to tap into the growing telemedicine market in the country, which has been further accelerated by the COVID-19 outbreak.
Siloam Hospital chief information officer Ryanto Marino Tedjomulja said the hospital chain had launched its online outpatient services or teleconsultation on April 13 in partnership with Aido Health, an online healthcare provider.
Major Indonesian hospitals offer remote medical consultation services to tap into the country's growing telemedicine market (Shutterstock/File)
"This service is meant to support the social distancing program," he said in an email correspondence on Friday, adding that patients who were unable to go to a hospital could also use the service to consult with a doctor.
As of now, the program has more than 300 medical specialists, Ryanto noted.
The hospital operator, which currently runs 36 hospitals across Indonesia, started its digital program about two years ago and launched its own application called MySiloam in August last year.
"In the two months before the COVID-19 pandemic, that is from December 2019 to February, the number of MySiloam downloads had increased threefold," Ryanto said, explaining that users sought information about COVID-19 and doctors' schedules on the hospital's digital platforms.
Aside from teleconsultations, Siloam has also adopted teleradiology, in which radiological images such as X-rays, CTs and MRIs can be distributed across its hospital networks. The hospital is now working on a plan to use telemedicine to help monitor patients’ conditions remotely, Ryanto said.
“Telemedicine will become part of the new normal. It is here to stay.”
According to Market Data Forecast, the telemedicine market in the Asia Pacific is projected to grow from US$8.51 billion in 2019 to $22.45 billion by 2024.
A report by Bain & Company, titled "Asia-Pacific Front Line of Healthcare Report 2020", says that the healthcare landscape in the Asia Pacific will expand at a rate almost double than that of the rest of the world by representing a more than 40 percent of the growth in global healthcare spending over the next decade.
The report, which surveyed more than 1,800 consumers and over 250 physicians across the Asia Pacific region, finds that there is a growing interest in preventative health, convenience and ownership over health care, indicating a prospective market in the long-term adoption of telemedicine.
In comparison to practices in three to five years ago, 59 percent of consumers expect their doctors to answer questions through phone and messaging services rather than waiting for the next appointment, 59 percent say they monitor their health using technology and 54 percent schedule appointments through mobile apps, the report shows.