In India, technology-driven healthcare startups are growing at a rapid scale. In metropolitan cities, healthcare is well-established and taken care of for the most part. In 2016, Sugandha Agarwal observed that compared to the tier-1 cities, tier-2 cities do not have enough healthcare facilities. That’s when she came up with her startup, Docttocare. It is an online healthcare portal that allows patients in non-metro cities to access and book an appointment with doctors and hospitals.
Why was Docttocare launched?
Sugandha is an electrical, electronics & communication engineer by qualification. After completing her education, she had the opportunity to work with some of the biggest tech giants in the world. Her stints include Oracle, Google Maps and Infosys. It was while working with these companies when she realised her capabilities of building a mass-product.
Seeing the alarming uneven ratio of the number of doctors compared to the number of patients in India, she decided to launch her healthcare startup, Docttocare. Seeing the fatalities due to lack of facilities, Sugandha resolved to bridge the gap between doctors and patients. She was focused from the beginning on providing healthcare access to all, instead of only the metro cities. Her startup primarily focused on providing quality healthcare to the masses of tier-2 cities. Through Docttocare, the patients can book their online appointments, book surgeries or even find nearby hospitals for emergencies. Some of the striking features of their website include Instant Online Ambulance and Air Ambulance, Blood bank and Hospital Bed Booking Facilities.
Belief in yourself, never give up, work harder. Do not be scared of failure; it is part of the deal to be successful.
- Sugandha Agarwal
Challenges increased for Sugandha
Sugandha states that at the beginning of Docttocare, she faced two major challenges, building the right team and funding. She found herself at an inherent disadvantage being the female founder. Even though things were tough, it only made Sugandha stronger and more determined. In May 2019, Docttocare received a seed-funding of Rs 4 Crore by Krishna Kumar Devnally. Further, Docttocare found support in programmes like the NASSCOM 10,000 Startups programme.
Docttocare has a simple revenue model. The services are free for patients, and they charge a 10% commission from the hospitals. They have successfully managed to win the trust of doctors and patients with their quality services. Dottocare now has a tie-up with esteemed hospitals like Apollo, Manipal, Medanta and many more. Sugandha believes that technology is the only way to make healthcare available to the masses. She also aspires to increase health awareness among the people.
What can we learn from Sugandha and her successful startup?
Even though Docttocare’s journey in the start was much more challenging than Sugandha had anticipated, she never gave up. Her determination to get what she wants is the reason behind her startup being so successful. She embraced failures and continued working hard. She also states how important it is to surround yourself with the right people while embarking upon your startup journey.