Kiwis across the country can see a GP online from the comfort of their own home with the launch of virtual doctors platform, Bettr.
Bettr is the first at scale virtual consultation platform backed by a network of trusted doctors from 48 Local Doctors and White Cross clinics, owned by New Zealand’s largest independent primary healthcare group, Tāmaki Health.
Tāmaki Health Chief Executive Officer, Steffan Crausaz, says the platform demonstrates the company’s commitment to improving delivery of healthcare in New Zealand and has been well received by both patients and doctors.
“Bettr is a secure, easy to use and affordable platform and while it will never eliminate the need for face to face consultations altogether, there are many health concerns that can be addressed via phone or video.
“This is the first purpose-built virtual platform that gives Kiwis the opportunity to fit healthcare into their schedule, no matter where they are. It is also about ensuring better access for all so no one has an excuse to put off important conversations with their doctor,” says Steffan.
Bettr enables patients, registered or non-registered, to book virtual appontments in the privacy of their own home, or preferred location, on a smartphone or other personal device, with patient notes securely stored.
“It also means patients from the more remote parts of the country have the ability to access medical advice without having to journey out of their town or wait for a doctor to visit. Bettr provides access to a doctor seven days a week in just a few clicks,” Steffan says.
Tolaga Bay resident and amputee, Dwayne Vemoa, lives a 45-minute drive from the nearest hospital in Gisborne and only has access to a doctor in his town a few days per week, where he says appointments can be difficult to secure.
“Having the ability to consult a doctor without having to make the journey into Gisborne will be life changing for a lot of residents in Tolaga Bay. Personally, it will mean I’ll have to make fewer trips for things like repeat prescriptions or asking important medical questions.
“For many of us, the journey to and from Gisborne can be off-putting or challenging which can mean you might be putting off health check-ups or asking the doctor important questions. Being able to access a doctor virtually is going to be great,” says Dwayne.
With Bettr, patients can book a 10-minute slot for a private phone or video consultation with a registered New Zealand doctor and can talk to a doctor online in as little as 20 minutes from booking. In its early phase, the platform will be available seven days from 8AM-1PM. However, hours are already increasing with demand.
Initial prices for appointments start at $10.00 for registered patients of Local Doctors and White Cross. Booking can be done in four steps, with same day appointments generally available. All patients are triaged prior to their appointment to identify and address potential urgent care needs which may need to be seen in person immediately.