INTERVIEW: Sajid Rahman, CEO of Telenor Health (pictured), believes recent scientific and technological advances coupled with expanded mobile access will transform healthcare services in developing markets, as it gears up for launch beyond an initial service in Bangladesh.
“We are often told we’re living in one of the most exciting times in history. This is because there is not only a lot of significant scientific developments in each discipline, but there is a lot of cross-discipline development happening, building on each other,” he told Mobile World Live.
Rahman explained many of the seemingly futurist concepts are actually being implemented today, giving the example of how artificial intelligence (AI) can improve outcomes for patients.
“If a doctor uses his own judgement, in many cases he or she is right 85 per cent to 90 per cent of the time, but if they use AI as a support, their accuracy rate goes up to 95 per cent or 99 per cent.”
Telenor Health, a subsidiary of European and Asian operator group Telenor, is tapping the power of the mobile phone to expand access to healthcare. In 2015 it launched Tonic, a test case mobile healthcare platform, in Bangladesh: today it is used by 5 million customers.
“We have 5 billion people connected to mobile phones, but not all of them have access to basic human needs, such as healthcare, financial services or even clean water. If we carry such a power tool in our pocket, can’t we use that tool to solve some of the largest problems in the world?” he asked.
Rahman believes because there’s such a huge need for the Tonic service it can grow to hundreds of millions of users worldwide. The company plans to expand to other markets in Asia and Africa and is using the launch in Bangladesh to write the play book to figure out what works and doesn’t.
Click here for the full interview.