Russia’s convenience craze shakes up healthcare

As Russian consumers get increasingly accustomed to receiving services from the comfort of their homes, industries have had to adapt to make their offerings as convenient as possible. Medicine is no exception.

SmartMed, the app of Russia’s largest private healthcare provider Medsi, has a fully digital client path. Almost everything that patients can do in a clinic they can also do online: from choosing a preferred clinic and doctor (there are more than 850 to choose from) to saving their medical history, the results of their medical tests, and their prescriptions on the app. Clients can also receive QR-codes for picking up medicine from the pharmacy, receive online consultations or even call doctors to their house. Since its launch in 2018, the app has garnered more than 1 million downloads.

Medsi is seeing demand for this sort of convenience grow exponentially. The growth of active users of its app constituted 225% year-on-year in 2021. And where only 20% of patients registered for in-person appointments through the SmartMed app in 2020, more than 50% did so in 2021. EMC has observed the same increase in uptake, with 860% growth in the number of telemedicine appointments since the start of the pandemic.

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