Young entrepreneur Dale Trotman is one step closer to making telemedicine mainstream in the Caribbean.
Trotman, who has travelled the region and beyond with his MedRegis electronic health record system, has partnered with United States-based telehealth company Doxy.me to bring digital medical care into the region in a big way.
“Telemedicine and electronic health records go hand in hand. Telemedicine does not require you to physically see a doctor as you can have virtual appointments and electronic health records get rid of the cumbersome paperwork.
“We’ve seen, especially now with the COVID-19 pandemic, where specific information is needed but cannot be found because of missing files and records or cannot be deciphered because of illegible handwriting,” he said.
Trotman said the region has been playing catch-up technologically for far too long and it was past time it hopped on to emerging trends.
“In general, Caribbean businesses I find do not go after technology as aggressively as in the United States or Europe, and in a lot of cases end up using old technology. It’s a mindset that needs to change. This is the 21st century and a lot of work can be streamlined using technology. Electronic health records and telemedicine should already be further along in the Caribbean,” he said.
In a release, director of International Business at Doxy.me, Varun Arora, said the Caribbean faced numerous geographical and infrastructural challenges so they wanted to support organic growth.
“In the Caribbean, telehealth is in its nascent stage. Telehealth has been shown to overcome barriers to health services caused by distance between patient and provider, access to reliable transportation, fragmentation of care due to gaps in time between appointments, and lack of available providers.
“In this region, many countries have robust but technologically limited public health systems. Doxy.me is an ideal partner for them to help reach the many patient citizens that must be cared for. We feel strongly that with our cutting- edge technology and high user satisfaction rates we can make a difference in the Caribbean,” he said.
As for the partnership with MedRegis, Arora said they were impressed with Trotman’s “committed work, growth and solutions in the Caribbean within health care technology”.
“They have users from private clinics and hospitals that can benefit from our telehealth application. Thus, we are looking forward to assisting their current and prospective users to integrate our technology and help MedRegis improve access to care for their patients,” he said.
Trotman said MedRegis has not been wholly accepted in the Caribbean as yet as he only worked with a few private health institutions so far but he hoped his partnership with an international telemedicine company would give him the credentials to once again approach regional governments, especially his country Barbados.
“Telehealth in general can be a teaching tool and would work great in institutions like the Barbados Community College or the University of the West Indies, especially now as online teaching is where the world is moving. With this pandemic, telemedicine is on the increase globally and I want to make sure my country and the region does not get left behind,” he said. (CA)