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Startup Memo: A Brief Look Into DoctorKoi’s Business, Prescription Writing Software and Online Consultation Market Landscape In Dhaka

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May 31, 2021

DoctorKoi is a Dhaka-based digital healthcare startup. Founded in 2017, the company offers two services: one, “a prescription writing software that enables doctors to write a prescription with a few clicks and manage their medical practice digitally” and two, online consultation services through its web. DoctorKoi is one of the four Bangladeshi startups that have made it into the latest cohort of Accelerating Asia. The company previously graduated from the Grameenphone Accelerator Program. DoctorKoi suggests that its prescription writing software helps doctors save time, improve service quality — complaints against illegible doctor’s hand-writing is a widespread medical woe in Dhaka — and allows doctors to serve more patients.

Details:

  • Digital RX, a prescription writing software, the flagship product of DoctorKoi. Using Digital RX doctors can write prescriptions with just a few clicks making the writing prescription super simple and time-efficient. The company says the software helps doctors search a database of 27,000+ medicines, offers suggestions and presets for writing, and helps maintain patient history helping doctors to save time and provide better patient care. The software can be accessed from multiple devices. The company says, since its inception, Digital RX has generated over 1.8 million prescriptions. The company says about 1450 doctors use its DRX software across 2000 chambers, and 500 use the software daily. 
  • Doctor Koi has partnered with pharmaceutical companies such as ACI, ESKAYEF, and Incepta, apparently to include their products into the database of DoctorKoi software. 
  • While DoctorKoi started its journey with DRX, the company entered telemedicine aka online consultation amid the coronavirus pandemic, an apparent expansion opportunity for the company given that it already works with a long list of doctors. The company says it has so far served over 12k patients with online consultation. Patients can make an appointment with a doctor by making a phone call at their hotline number from 10 am to 6 pm or via their Facebook page or Doctokoi web. Patients can make the payment digitally or using mobile banking solutions. Once an appointment is confirmed, patients are sent the appointment time and other instructions via SMS. A DoctorKoi agent helps patients to prepare for the online consultation.
  • DoctorKoi has so far raised two rounds of investments: an undisclosed pre-seed investment from the Bangladesh Angels Network and another in 2017 as part of the Grameenphone Accelerator program. 

Competitive landscape: While digital healthcare services remain in their early days in Dhaka, we have seen an influx of players in the space over the past few years trying to take on different aspects of healthcare solutions. Several notable players have entered the two verticals where DoctorKoi operates — prescription software and online consultation — in the last two years with varying degrees of intensity and focus.

  • Prescription writing software has seen growing attention over the past few years in Dhaka. Several players now offer prescription writing software. Jotno Expert, a prescription writing product developed by Square Health, a concern of Square Group, is among the leading competitors in the market. 
  • Digital health, online consultation, in particular, has seen an influx of players over the past few years. The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated the pace. Some of the dominant players in the space include Praava Health, Digital Healthcare Solutions, Shohoz Health, Maya, and a host of other players. 

Healthcare is an integrated service. If DoctorKoi can build out a lead in the prescription space, it can expand that lead into areas like online consultation, on-demand tests, checkups, on-demand medicine delivery aka pharmacy, and other relevant healthcare-related services. In fact, the company has already been looking into some of these areas for expansion.


Final thoughts

The upside for DoctorKoi is that digital healthcare remains an unsolved problem in Bangladesh. Despite an influx of players taking on various aspects of healthcare, the vertical has yet to produce a clear market leader. Moreover, digital healthcare remains an unproven market. While online consultation has grown meaningfully over the past months, thanks to the pandemic, it is hard to predict whether the growth will hold in a post-pandemic world. People maintain a high preference for in-person doctor visits. 

This leaves an opening for any company that can execute better in the digital healthcare space. DoctorKoi, being an early player in the prescription software space, has an early mover advantage in the market.

Healthcare is an integrated service. If DoctorKoi can build out a lead in the prescription space, it can expand that lead into areas like online consultation, on-demand tests, checkups, on-demand medicine delivery aka pharmacy, and other relevant healthcare-related services. In fact, the company has already been looking into some of these areas for expansion.

As the company graduates from Accelerating Asia, it is likely to be able to raise further investment to push its growth and build out the product. That being said, digital healthcare remains a nascent market and we will have to wait a few more years before offering a meaningful understanding of the trajectory of the market. 

Tithi Chowdhury is an undergraduate student majoring in Botany at the University of Dhaka. She is a Trainee Analyst at Future Startup and looks after our Collective Knowledge initiative where she prepares interviews and writes articles on interesting topics. She is a voracious reader and loves listening to podcasts in her spare time.

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