India, 9th October 2019: According to World Health Organization, one person dies every 40 seconds because of some form of mental disorder and only 10% of patients suffering from mental illness receive treatment in India. Still considered a taboo subject, mental illness is often swept under the carpet and patients who suffer from mental disorders are leading poor quality life in India.
In a country like ours, the stigmas attached to mental health and societal pressure has led to hesitancy in seeking timely medical assistance. In light of such statistics, Practo has been striving hard to bridge the gap between the need for medical assistance for mental health and accessibility to the right healthcare professionals in India through technology.
Practo’s Online Consult has registered an 88% growth in psychiatric queries since last year. Consumers have increasingly preferred online consultation as it helps in understanding the symptoms via virtual assistance at the initial stage and removes all apprehensions of visiting a doctor for further treatment. Online Consult also aids in getting immediate answers to some burning questions about anxiety, depression and more from Medical Council registered quality doctors. Solving for accessibility issue, Practo’s Online Consult is not just helping people from metro cities but also patients from tier 2+ cities and rural areas where the availability of mental health professionals is very limited.
According to the Practo Health Insights, Indians outside of the 7 Metro cities are consulting specialists in these areas, more than ever before!
- Mental health has been one of the topmost concerns for Online Consult users in India, not just in metro cities but also for people from non-metro cities
- Most of the queries related to mental health were from Bangalore, followed by Delhi and Mumbai
- Mental health-related queries grew 367% In Non-T7 cities, last year
- 40% of all mental health-related consults come from women, while 60% are from men
- Chandigarh is the fastest growing city with 353% growth from 2018 followed by Ahmedabad and Lucknow which grew at 342% and 233% respectively
The growth in the number of queries witnessed on Practo’s online consultation service for mental health queries is a testament to the fact that it has become the platform of choice for patients in India.
Dr Alexander Kuruvilla, Chief Healthcare Strategy Officer, Practo, said, “Over the last decade, we’ve continuously made efforts to simplify healthcare access for millions of consumers. Digital healthcare and technology have transformed mental healthcare in a way that makes it easy for patients to consult a psychiatrist or psychologist online and book an instant appointment if required. Also, people who suffer from mental health disorders are worried about confidentiality and privacy while discussing their mental condition. At Practo, we make sure that only the patient and the doctor has access to all records, thereby ensuring complete privacy. ”