Solving the "no-show" Problem πŸ‘€

In developing countries, patients don't come back for their follow-up appointments or in other words they "no-show"! This impacts the healthcare system since it increases the cost of care, puts burden on staff and misallocates resources in already low-resource settings.

I've created a chatbot-based system that automatically messages & calls patients to remind them of their follow-up appointment, as well as answers their questions and we've already confirmed a pilot with the largest cancer hospital in Tanzania where I'll be in mid-June to August!

The Problem πŸ₯

In developing countries, like Tanzania, the "no-show" rate can be as high as 80%. High rates of "no-shows" is one of the main factors in the increased morbidity of chronic diseases. In hospitals, "no-shows" lead to inefficient use of resources, increased costs, longer wait times, and reduced access to care for other patients. Also, if a patient is missing appointments, they won’t get the treatment they need and can end up with an adverse health outcome such as death or long-term damage.

Our Solution βš™οΈ

Check out the chatbot I've been working on creating that we'll be piloting with Ocean Road Cancer Hospital in mid-June!

Patient-SMS interaction πŸ’¬

We created a 2-way SMS chatbot that reminds patients of their upcoming appointments and using AI, allows them to have a conversation with the bot to reschedule, cancel or inquire about their appointments/condition. The bot also makes automated calls if there is no response by text to further inform the patient. Healthcare workers are able to input patient data through our secure, user-friendly web app and monitor all patient conversations.

This is a sample interaction of a patient in Tanzania receiving texts in Swahili about their appointment and further inquiring about the procedure of their VIA examination for cervical cancer. Imara also has the ability to integrate with WhatsApp due to the large demand and usage of WhatsApp in developing countries.

User-friendly interface 😁

Below is a quick screenshot of the interface that nurses are using to upload patient information so that our bot can message the patients accordingly.

We're working with the largest cancer hospital in Tanzania. πŸ‡ΉπŸ‡Ώ

We're working with the team at Ocean Road Cancer Institute to turn this into a reality. We've already gotten ethical clearance to conduct our pilot and are in the middle of implementing it as we speak. The first couple of months we'll be working with the chemotherapy clinic and messaging 1500 patients monthly reminding them to come back for their follow-up appointments.

Current Progress and Help Needed

Currently, we've been able to...

1) Develop an MVP(minimum viable product) of our web-app 2) Confirm a pilot at the largest cancer research hospital in Tanzania, Ocean Road Cancer Institute. 3) Gain interest from several other healthcare institutions in East Africa and India. We are now at the point in which we are fundraising $2,000 for our pilot in Tanzania to help us implement our software at 2 chemotherapy clinics in Tanzania as well as Ocean Road Cancer Institute

Imara Health 2023