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Docly: digital consultations

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“Anyone who has tried digital consultations, and gained confidence with them, will not go physical unless it’s needed,” says Magnus Nyhlén, doctor and founder of Docly. “Obviously, for many conditions, physical consultations are still paramount. If you’re a 50-year old smoker with chest pain, you won’t be seeing an online doctor. But there is a whole range of situations that can be addressed digitally.”

Docly offers an online solution to relieve healthcare professionals from a huge volume of cases that can be dealt with digitally, freeing up precious time and resources for serious cases that require physical care. “In healthcare, typically 10% of patients take up 90% of the resources. We decided to look on the other side instead and take away the bulk of cases from physical care.”

Docly collects structured data from patients so that doctors can quickly and efficiently assess a situation, sending the patient for further analysis or resolving the issue swiftly, without the need for a physical consultation. This means savings for the healthcare budget and the patients as well. “If you think about it, 90% of the time in consultations, the doctor is asking questions. We have structured these questions so the patient can answer everything before having to come in and be seen. We’re seeing that 85% of cases are resolved through text communication digitally, without the need for a consultation in person. In a sense, it’s is similar to what is happening in the banking sector, where things like online banking now allow consumers to do much of the work themselves, freeing up resources for other more demanding tasks,” Magnus explains.

It’s not difficult to imagine how this kind of software could be very useful during situations of crisis, like the current COVID-19 pandemic: “We have seen demand increasing rapidly over the past month,” Magnus adds, “Usually our clients are younger, but now the service is being used increasingly by older people too as they prefer not to go out. I think there will now be a shift in attitudes. Patients have been ready for digital consultations for a long time, and governments have been coming around too. At the end of the day, it saves time and resources and can help keep people away from infection centres.”

In 2018, Docly received an equity investment from EQT Ventures, a venture capital firm backed by the EIF under the EU’s Investment Plan for Europe. This allowed the company to set up its business in the UK: “At the time, we had a solid presence in Sweden. With the investment, we set up our office in the UK and teamed up with the NHS. This partnership is as much about doctor/patient readiness as it is about financing models. But attitudes are changing rapidly.”

Company:  Docly (Sweden)

Type of business: healthcare

EIF financing: EFSI

Financial intermediary: EQT Ventures

For further information about EIF intermediaries in Sweden, please refer to: http://www.eif.org/what_we_do/where/se

 

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