How this healthcare startup is making sure that you don't take life for granted


One day, when one of Mitish Chitnavis’s friends went for his routine morning walk, he suddenly collapsed and died, leaving his family behind.

Today, people are not aware of how their health may be deteriorating, and are scared to go to a doctor for further investigation. This, along with the aforementioned shocking incident, led Mitish Chitnavis and Bala Unnikrishnan to start Health5C. The Bengaluru-based PDHP tech company enables people to proactively manage living a healthy life, rather than taking life for granted.

Chitnavis has served as the Chief Security and Privacy Officer for Mphasis, and the VP of Operations at Obopay. Unnikrishnan, an IIM alumnus, brings 20 years of experience to the table, having worked with companies like, Onmobile Global, Obopay, and Nokia India.

Mitish Chitnavis, co-founder, Health5C

Mitish Chitnavis, Co-founder, Health5C, says,

I started Health5C in 2011, with an initial investment of Rs. 2 lakh. Our aim was to build a robust, scalable, and consumer-friendly health platform, whose biggest plus point is 'ease of use'

Like for many other startups, funding was one of the company’s issues. Owing to that, the startup scaled down its development team from 27 to five. Today, Health5C has a team of 11 co-workers.

The five Cs in Health5C stand for comprehensive, consistent, collaborative, citizen and care. Follow-up visits, self-monitoring, and medication are all major factors that contribute to the recovery of a person. With the increase in use of technology among consumers, healthcare is no more restricted within the four walls of a hospital. This is where Health5C comes into play.

Health5C, so far, has tied up with 139 hospitals and diagnostic centres in India, from Apollo Dental to SRL Labs to Apollo Clinic to WasanEye Care. Moreover, the startup also has two large insurance companies, and some corporatesand telecom operators, as its clients.

Health5C has a total of 4,50,000 people using its independent apps.

Bala Unnikrishnan, Co-founder, Health5C says, "Some of these apps are generating revenue for us."

Pill identifier app

Bal Unnikrishnan, Co-founder, Health5C

The Health5C mobile applications are available for Android and iOS. The pill identifier app does the very simple job of identifying the correct pill or medication information for all the medicines in its database. It uses the size, shape, color, imprints on the pill etc., to identify the pill. It helps people to identify loose pills. The startup has built this app in collaboration with a US partner.


Unnikrishnan avers,

Unlike India, the US market has the option of ordering the medication online. The medication is shipped or delivered in a small dosage container. The Pill Identifier app is needed in the US market for identifying loose pills, which are shipped inthese daily dosage containers by the pharmacy.

Growing by leaps and bounds

According to KPMG, the health tech market is estimated at Rs. 3500 crore, growing at a rate of 18-20% per annum. Chitnavis mentions that Health5C aims to go beyond remote management of healthcare and digitization of records.

Health5C’s client list includes Nextgen Data Center Services, and several hospitals in Bengaluru and Mumbai such as Suhas Diagnostics, Abhaya Hospital, BGS, Pooja Hospital, Express Clinic, Care Patrons, and Chirag Hospital, among others. Besides, the startup firm works with insurance brokers such Almondz and JLT.

"Health5C wants to put the power of informed choices in the patient's hands," says Unnikrishnan.

Health5C has tied up with approximately over 200 healthcare providers, both as clients and as ancillary benefit providers.

The healthcare startup at present is working with a mobile operator based out of Bangladesh, helping them converting 11 million voice customers into data customers.

When it comes to engaging with corporates, Health5C gets involved with the HR department,and runs “fitness-based" and "getting-healthy based" contests.

Today employees are not aware of their health, blood pressure, cholesterol, thyroid condition, weight and other issues. Health5C's corporate programs capture all this data, and help employees with further investigations and treatments of the same.

Unnikrishnan elucidates,

Our personalised ‘Weight Loss Challenge’ in the corporate sphere is a major success. A personalised diet plan, fitness plans, and coaching help employees lose weight and remain healthy.

Health5C has 15 full-time employees, including founders. Its corporate wellness program is headed by a Chief Wellness Specialist.

Digital health platform

Digital health - self-care and building the doctor-patient relationship -is going to be the biggest gainer in the coming three years. Health5C already has the kind of comprehensive platform needed to enable these transactions, such as patient portals, personal health records, telehealth/telemedicine capabilities, patient education tools,medication management capabilities, shared decision-making tools, mHealth apps, and many more.Health5C witnessesmonthly transactions of Rs 21500 to 23000.

Going forward

As a part of their growth and expansion plans, Health5C is planning to serve around a 10-million subscriber base in India, EMEA and SAARC countries. Health5C’s corporate programs (subscription model) have turned profitable in terms of revenue. The startup is looking at a run-rate turnover of Rs.1 crore for FY 2016.

Chitnavis says,

The potential for Health5C hold in linking healthcare seekers to providers, and sharing with them information, alerts and services, is immense.




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