DailyRounds, a social network of doctors, announced on Wednesday that it had raised an undisclosed amount in funding led by Accel Partners, with participation from Beenext, Powerhouse Ventures, and Aksua Holdings, Japan. With about 40 cases uploaded a day, the startup claims that more cases are discussed on their mobile app than in all the medical colleges in India combined.
DailyRounds was founded in 2014 by Dr Deepu Sebin, an MD in internal medicine and critical care. He started the venture as a personal project while working with an IIT Madras team on a few healthcare projects and found that engineers collaborate effortlessly via channels like Stack Overflow. So he decided to build a platform for doctors to collaborate. It took a few months to implement this idea, but by late 2014 the beta app had started gaining popularity among doctors.
At this stage, Nimmi Cherian and Priyaank Choubey joined as full time co-founders and the team was accepted to GSF Accelerator. The startup then raised a seed round of funding led by Kae Capital. Dr Deepu has earlier co-founded DoctorSpring, a startup focusing on online healthcare delivery models for insurance providers and consumers. Before joining DailyRounds, Nimmi worked as a research officer on the Akash tablet project and Priyaank was the CTO at Spiffout, a customer engagement platform. DailyRounds was also one of YourStory's Tech 30 2015 companies.
Doctors need to constantly learn and keep themselves updated about the latest practices in their field. Case-based learning (clinical cases) is considered to be the best way to go about doing that. The traditional methods for case discussions are CME conferences and medical journals, but the cost and time doctors need to spend often make it difficult. Also, on average, a medical doctor takes 30 key decisions per day which range from what drug to prescribe, when to do a surgery, what device to use, to when to discharge a patient.
DailyRounds aims to positively influence such decisions by providing simple solutions to a complex problem. Dr Deepu cited the example of the WHO TB treatment guidelines, which reached an estimated 80,000 doctors in a single day through their “practice changing update” push notification. He said, "When we take into account the number of patients who will receive the updated TB treatment because of that, a push notification turns into a high-impact activity."
In its essence, DailyRounds is an academic network of doctors, with a three-level verification process to ensure only verified and approved doctors take part in discussions and case sharing. Talking to YourStory, Dr Deepu noted,
DailyRounds is a Facebook for doctors, but instead of holiday photos, baby pictures, and selfies, doctors share unique and rare cases they find in their clinical practice.
Each case uploaded on the platform is verified by DailyRounds' algorithm, upvoted by peers, and if needed, double- checked by the startup's panel of expert doctors. The case then gets a 'verified correct diagnosis' tag within 24 hours of submission.
"Built by doctors, for doctors," Dr Deepu notes that their product has been vouched for by doctors across the world— from Syrian refugee camps to Harvard Medical School — as the one app that they always keep on their phones. The app's case library and discussions help senior doctors stay updated even after they have left medical colleges.
While players like Practo and Portea are well known in the Indian healthcare sector, DailyRounds directly competes with players like Curofy, Buzz4health, PlexusMD, Figure 1, Doximity , DXY (China), and Docplexus,
DailyRounds claims to have over 2,50,000 users spread across the globe, with the Indian subcontinent being the most prominent userbase. Primary care, internal medicine, cardiology, radiology, and emergency medicine are the top specialities.
Consisting of a 31-member team based in Bengaluru, the startup monetises by providing market research insights to businesses based on the market intelligence it collects. DailyRounds is free for doctors to use and the startup is currently exploring other revenue models to leverage. One of these includes separate apps for specialisations like radiologists, cardiologists, and paediatricians.