Singapore and India-based Vivant on ‘co-creating’ healthcare solutions: Startup Stories

Health-tech startup aims to transform healthcare through the power of data analytics and customized apps.

Vivant CEO Adrit Raha. Image courtesy of Vivant

Launched in July 2018 after the merger of India based AllizHealth and Singapore-based Symple Wellness, Vivant is a data-driven, digital health and wellness company delivering preventative healthcare in Southeast Asia, India and the Middle East.

The startup has its own apps, such as Nyra, a fertility and health tracker for women. But it also sub-licenses the software solutions on its health and wellness platform to partners, which include private insurers, corporates or healthcare providers. The partners can then apply these tools, which include a variety of content and trackers, to suit their respective end-users needs. In effect, Vivant helps them create custom apps that help identify, manage, and track the health of customers or employees.

Vivant also continues to develop Nyra and recently announced the launch of a localized version of the app in Malay. Besides helping women of all ages track their feminine health, fertility, and fitness, the app also has a free doctor chat functionality. Nyra is already available in English and Hindi.

The Nyra app. Courtesy of Vivant

KrAsia talks to Vivant CEO Adrit Raha about Vivant’s evolution and how the “intel” part– that’s how he refers to insights that can be drawn from data analysis–contributes to improving healthcare nowadays.

KrAsia (Kr): What do you mean when you say you’re the ‘intel’ of healthtech? 

Adrit Raha (AR): This aspiration stems from the problems we see in the current relationships between those who pay for, those who provide, and those who receive healthcare, caused by the highly fragmented nature of the healthcare industry.

With apps like Nyra and other tools, we target the “holy grail” opportunity in healthcare: habit formation and preventative care. If consumers are becoming more aware of health risks and avenues available to them, they should be better placed to avoid such diseases and associated costs.

Because Vivant is a platform, our partners can benefit from its AI and data analytics capabilities that can provide insights for stakeholders across the healthcare value chain (insurance companies, healthcare providers, and corporates). The aim is to assist the latter to engage meaningfully with their customers and impact overall healthcare costs and effectiveness.

Kr: How has Vivant been able to leverage innovative technologies to create value for customers? 

AR: Our platform provides access to a curated network of healthcare providers and experts – this empowers individuals to take charge of their health with the ability to access advice and relevant services anytime, anywhere.

For example, our Nyra app uses innovative technology to enable women to gain a better understanding of hormones, fertility and reproductive health in general – this provides tangible value in women’s lives as they can track their moods and take charge of pregnancy planning.

Nyra has had 120k downloads to date, with over 10k doctor chats. Users are broadly located in India, Pakistan, parts of Africa and Southeast Asia. About 25 percent of users have logged on three times or more.

Advancements in translation options, using machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI), facilitate easier conversion into vernacular languages. It takes only three days to get a new language uploaded, once it’s been translated. This technological improvement allows us to radically progress health engagement and access to solutions in unreached or under-served communities.

Kr: Can you talk about the challenges operating in very diverse countries in both Southeast Asia and India and how mobile phone adoption in these two regions has helped the healthtech space? 

AR: One needs to be cognizant of local cultural nuances, language, religion, diversity and ultimately the financial standing of the end-users. We have already begun introducing vernacular language content and multi-lingual apps like Nyra to address this, along with ensuring that via our AI & ML engine the content delivered is customized to the user profile and behavior.

In addition, there are common themes around women’s health, diabetes, hypertension and the usage of mobile devices that help in mitigating some of the localization requirements.

Increased mobile adoption in various regions means our customer base is ever-expanding. Offering health services through mobile apps increases healthcare accessibility and efficiency of service delivery while and reducing cost barriers.

Kr: How can people benefit from these tools? 

AR: Data allows us access to relevant insights and trends which can then circle back to customers in the form of personalized and persuasive wellness plans. For example, Nyra requires data input from consumers in order to provide a ‘lifestyle assistant’ service, which prompts users with helpful suggestions outside of traditional period tracking vocabulary – these include suggestions around types of food to avoid or increase intake of, reminders around alcohol consumption etc.

By customizing the app experience to a variety of lifestyle contexts, and continually building the app’s data and vocabulary through user feedback, we are making progress in encouraging habit formation amongst users.

The next step is leveraging med-tech, along with supporting government and social bodies that are targeting low-income segments. This will be key to getting healthcare access available to them. Something as simple as the in-app doctor chat-functionality on Nyra has seen over 10,000 chats in under 2 months.

Kr: What are the short-term and long-term goals for Vivant? 

AR: We want to grow to 2 million users by the year 2020, and make the Nyra app available in other vernacular languages used across Asia and the Middle East to reach all underserved women in these regions, together with the right partners.

For Nyra, we’re looking for future development of the product to tie in with IVF and gynecology for example, so we will make a connection to that ecosystem over time.

Another long-term goal is to focus efforts on enhancing the AI component of our product to ultimately drive healthcare outcome and impact. We want to launch further products that cover a range of women’s health and wellness issues including pregnancy, post-pregnancy care, and re-entering the workplace.