Global Health answers call for virtual GP sessions

Global Health answers call for virtual GP sessions

Melbourne-based Global Health (ASX: GLH) was already on a roll with strong revenue growth before the coronavirus outbreak, but now its software and videoconferencing platform for doctors is more relevant than ever.

The company's practice management and medical software PrimaryClinic allows general practitioners (GPs) to remotely screen vulnerable patients with potential COVID-19 symptoms, avoiding the need for them to turn up at the clinic and risk contamination.

This kind of service known as 'telehealth' was previously only available on the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) for doctors to provide consultations in remote areas, but telehealth items on the MBS were expanded on 11 March.

"GPs here have long been calling for coronavirus specific telehealth item numbers to be added to the MBS to assist with managing the sudden surge of cases across Australia in the hope to reduce the risk of infected people arriving at practices, and further contaminating other patients and the practice staff," says Global Health CEO Mathew Cheria.

Global Health's PrimaryClinic software is integrated to the company's engagement platform HotHealth - a value-add that enables healthcare providers to digitally communicate with patients through video conferences, community engagement tools, online bookings and forms.

GPs and their clients can access the video conferencing function via their computer, tablet or the HotHealth phone app, and appointments are set up and scheduled the same as a face-to-face consultation, with an allocated time slot and an active link to join the consultation.

"This software allows the GP to ask and gauge the relevant symptoms such as fever or cough, in a non-contact environment and they can use online forms to find out further details such as whether they have recently travelled to high-risk countries, potentially contracting COVID-19," says Cheria. 

The R&D-focused company saw its customer revenue rise 18 per cent year-on-year to $2.76 million in the first half of FY20, while its loss more than halved to $217,903.

GLH's products are currently used by 2,000 healthcare organisations in Australia and have reportedly assisted more than three million patients. 

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