This speciality hospital offers state-of-the-art medical care to all kinds of pets

Gurugram-based DCC Animal Hospital offers emergency, in-patient and out-patient facilities for all pets and companions, and its proprietary software makes the consultation procedure an easy one for pet parents to navigate.
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Pets are always great companions, and need care and love. During the pandemic, many pet owners formed deep relationships with their pets, who need elevated upkeep and care.

This is why the launch of Gurugram-based DCC Pets (Dogs Cats and Companions) Animal Hospital is well-timed. This multi-speciality pet healthcare facility promoted by Japan and Singapore based company A’alda, offers emergency, in-patient, and out-patient facilities for all pets and companions.

“Our new chain of multi-speciality DCC Animal Hospitals house highly-skilled doctors and on-ground staff who follow global standards of veterinary science. The hospital team is led by Dr Vinod Sharma, who is also credited with setting up India’s first blood bank for dogs. He has helped us design services and treatments for the veterinary hospital. The company has focused heavily on ensuring advanced technologies for pet healthcare and a seamless interactive app-based experience for pet parents,” says Ohhun Kwon, COO of A’alda and Director of A’alda Vet India, in a chat with YS Weekender.

DCC Animal Hospital

The idea

After his graduation, Ohhun worked in the corporate sector with several prestigious firms. Soon after, he joined his friend to launch A’alda in Singapore. He currently oversees the development and implementation of the group’s overall business strategy and all business activities in India.

“A'alda was founded in 2019 to provide veterinary care and clinical services for animals in Asian countries. It works on solving challenges in the veterinary care industry and aims to be the best veterinary medical platform in the world. Our DCC Animal Hospital project was envisioned to humanise pet care services. The company’s mission is to continuously improve the standard of care for hospitals and veterinary medicine and make it accessible to people globally,” he explains.

The animal healthcare sector in India is not at par with its international counterparts in providing high-quality services. In India, there is one doctor per 7,000 pet patients, and in Japan, it is 1,100. With the number of pets in India numbering around 23 million, and the average growth rate of the industry almost 11 percent per year, there is a large gap that needs to be filled. This is what led to them launching their flagship facility in Gurugram in February 2021, spread over 38,000 sq ft and their clinic in Delhi.

How it works?

DCC Animal Hospital is equipped with operation theatres, an intensive care unit, recovery rooms, imaging, and pathology services. It is conceived as a one-stop destination that provides high-quality medical care for pets in preventive care, radiology and laboratory, dentistry, surgical, diagnostic and therapeutic services.

The hospital also has emergency and critical care services available around the year. Apart from medical care, the facility also provides comfortable and luxurious boarding services for pets and grooming services. They have recently launched a hydro-therapy pool for pets, which is a big hit with clients and their fur babies.

When asked what sets them apart from others in the field, Ohhun enthusiastically highlights three factors. He says,

“We offer a superior client experience because our services are designed keeping in mind the perspective of patients who use our hospitals. Our in-house proprietary software called DCC PetConnect simplifies veterinary care for pet parents, and we lay emphasis on evidence-based medicine, instead of relying excessively on intuition and experience.”

 

Their in-house software and smartphone application DCC PetConnect allows customers to book appointments, receive reminders, fill out pre-visit questionnaires, receive pre and post-visit instructions, view past consultation records, and view payment history through the app/web portal to make their hospital experience easier. A consultation costs Rs 700, but tests and procedures have additional charges.

Each case is dealt with according to global standard practices. They promise to make an appropriate diagnosis and take necessary action based on the owner’s subjective opinion and objective observations made by doctors.

Claiming no serious competition, Ohhun emphatically says, “We are a global chain of veterinary experts pulling in best of training and guidance from experts across the US and Japan in the field of veterinary care. Be it preventive care, rare diseases, or surgeries, we use the best equipment and technique. Indian vets are handpicked and trained to match global standards. Our approach of merging technology with veterinary care is a first-of-its-kind, with the launch of DCC PetConnect App.”

Though general medical services are provided only in Delhi and Gurugram, their telehealth platform provides veterinary advice to customers throughout India.

DCC Animal Hospital

The growth

According to the Indian Federation of Animal Health, the Indian animal healthcare market is estimated to be around Rs 6,000 crore in 2021. Data collection platform mordorintelligence.com, projects the Indian veterinary healthcare market to register a CAGR of 7.98 percent from 2021-26, reaching $1,697.15 million by 2026, displaying immense growth potential.

Ohhun says, “Unlike other startups, the initial investment needed to launch both veterinary hospitals and software was not small for us. Certain things cannot be compromised when building hospitals because ultimately the aim is to save lives. Therefore, the amount of money we have invested to start the above project is around 80-90 million rupees.”

With the increased time spent at home due to the pandemic, people began adopting new pets in higher numbers. DCC began a new remote consultation initiative using teleconferencing tools, which was well-received. All this contributed to their growth.

DCC Animal Hospital

“We opened our first veterinary clinic at Greater Kailash II in Delhi in October 2020. The flagship animal hospital was then officially launched in March 2021. We are now receiving about 700 visits per month at the two branches. There is still room for more, so we would like to continue to increase the number of activities that lead to an increase in the number of visits and at the same time, save more lives. We endeavour to reach out to the maximum number of pets in need so that the best treatment can be delivered to them,” he says.

However, they also faced challenges. Due to the current FDI rules, as a foreign company, they are allowed to provide medical services, but cannot sell medicines or pet goods at the hospital. They, therefore, had to tie up with external partners, and it was a difficult task finding high-quality services for this purpose.

Their focus now is on expanding their existing hospital customer base, as well as the number of branches. Further, they are working towards accelerating digitalisation.

Ohhun explains, “We would like to digitalise the entire lifecycle of the hospital experience. In our existing hospitals, all records are maintained electronically, and we plan to open up some of them for the benefit of clients by launching an app in the near future. We will also enable payments on the app. We will try to eliminate customer pain points as much as possible and make DCC Animal Hospital a place that can provide value beyond just medical services. This is not only for India, but also for our group company in Japan.”

Edited by Kanishk Singh

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