When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, international hospital group Mediclinic needed a fast and safe way to give patients, staff and visitors access to clinics. For this, it turned to technology partner company Infobip, a global omnichannel communications leader. By combining Azure Bot Service and its Azure-based WhatsApp Business platform, Infobip delivered an effective health screening service for mobile devices. Today, the bot-driven solution is helping health-care staff and visitors access Mediclinic’s facilities safely.
Driven to create seamless digital interactions between people, businesses and technology, technology partner company Infobip is a world leader in omnichannel communication. Headquartered in Croatia, the company maintains a presence in more than 200 countries around the world. Its communications platform handles a staggering seven billion messaging transactions every month, including SMS, emails, voice messages, rich communication services (RCS) and chat apps. “Our goal is to drive seamless interactions between businesses and people,” says Carmela Lim, Product Marketing Specialist at Infobip. “It’s our mission to create positive outcomes and life-changing digital interactions for the 9,500 B2B companies we serve.”
Infobip has a wide global reach that puts them in touch with almost two-thirds of the global population, and it’s putting that connectivity to good use. Its COVID-19 information bot is helping governments and public health organizations across the globe provide the latest pandemic information at scale.
Early in the pandemic, the omnichannel communications provider also came to the aid of private health care services group Mediclinic. The health care provider needed an efficient way to safely screen patients, doctors and visitors for symptoms before entering its hospitals and clinics across South Africa.
Improving clinic check-ins
Infobip had already been providing Mediclinic with a WhatsApp Business solution for internal communications. At the start of COVID-19, Mediclinic wanted a separate WhatsApp channel for customers as well. “The group needed an efficient way to screen patients, doctors and visitors entering its hospitals and clinics around South Africa,” says Mark Goosen, Enterprise Sales Manager at Infobip South Africa.
The idea was to eliminate the need for patients to fill their personal details on paper upon entry. This would reduce the risk of physical contact with shared equipment while streamlining the overall entry process. Infobip and Mediclinic decided to create a custom check-in system, combining Infobip’s Azure-based WhatsApp messaging system with Microsoft Azure Bot Service. Leveraging an existing API, Infobip only needed small adjustments and configuration changes for the new solution. Mediclinic had a working model within two days and launched the new solution a week later.
A simple and effective solution
Adoption was quick because the solution was easy to use. “You simply scan the QR code at the entrance to the medical facility, access the WhatsApp channel, and respond to basic questions about your health. There’s no long, rigorous process,” shares Goosen. “We saw approximately 10,000 unique monthly users grow to 75,000 within the first two weeks,” says Goosen. Today, more and more hospital visitors are turning to the Azure-powered solution for a faster way to check in. “The solution has really helped South African citizens and hospital users gain access to health care facilities safely during COVID-19. Today, 60 percent of visitors who enter Mediclinic facilities use the channel to gain access.”
In the future, Infobip is looking forward to working with Mediclinic on new projects to simplify interactions in the clinical space. One of them is a WhatsApp- and Azure-based solution for sharing the one-time pins needed to connect to hospital Wi-Fi networks.
Helping people enter hospitals more safely and with fewer delays has been a game changer for the hospital group. “I think the solution has been really helpful for South African citizens in dealing with hospital entries during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Goosen sums up.
It’s our mission to create positive outcomes and life-changing digital interactions for the 9,500 B2B companies we serve.
Carmela Lim: Product Marketing Specialist Infobip