New SA tech startup launches virtual healthcare booking app

Ollie Health, a SA healthtech startup has just launched its  virtual healthcare booking app that connects patients with healthcare professionals in an easy-to-use platform. 

Ollie Health claims to be SA’s first virtual healthcare booking platform

Ollie Health provides access to several healthcare professionals across the country, including dentists, general practitioners, chiropractors, psychologists, and more via an app.

 Users can schedule appointments, receive booking reminders, personalised video links for the virtual consultations, and more. 

Founded and registered as an entity in SA in July 2020, Ollie Health is the new-kid-on-the-block in the healthtech sector. The healthtech startup is founded by South African entrepreneurs, Marc Gregory Knowles and Andrei Casim. 

In an interview with Ventureburn, Ollie Health explains that the startup is completely bootstrapped. 

“‘The startup is completely self-funded. The founders have been approached by a venture firm from China, but have not secured a Seed Round.”

Marc Knowles, founder, and CEO of Ollie Health provides insight into the inspiration behind creating Ollie Health. 

“We are currently seeing healthcare professionals jump from using Zoom, Skype, and even WhatsApp video to perform virtual consultations, yet there is an opportunity to create a better experience with Ollie Health. Video sessions should be simple, not stressful.”

Ollie Health claims to provide instant service to its users seeking professional healthcare. 

“It’s twice as fast as searching Google, finding a professional nearby and sending an email, or making a phone call. It’s booking on your own terms. You don’t need to wait until the reception of the practice is open, booking is 24/7.”

How does it work  

Ollie Health claims to be South Africa’s first virtual healthcare app based on the unique technology employed to connect patients with healthcare practitioners. 

“We are the first to have a fully custom video API that creates a better video experience on mobile and desktop. Our peer-to-peer serverless system makes connecting much easier. We are the first native IOS and Andriod App where you can find, instantly book, and have the consultation all in one.”

In addition, users are able to filter through various practitioners available on their medical aid scheme and have the freedom to choose if they wish to employ a cash-direct service. 

Andrei Caisim, co-founder and head of development of Ollie Health comments on the plans for the new startup. 

“We aspire to be part of the next generation of healthcare platforms, providing a private space for the users to plan and stay in touch with their preferred healthcare professionals, but also explore other options and benefit the advantages of telemedicine.”

Ollie Health is currently available for users in Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg, with plans to launch in Accra Ghana by the end of this year. 

Ollie Health App (Supplied)

Healthcare professionals

Ollie Health allows registered healthcare professionals to promote their business and reach more clients, offering a range of services such as: 

  • Free signup and listing creation 
  • The first five bookings received are free of booking charges
  • The standard booking fee applicable to healthcare professionals is R15 per booking
  • No onboarding or monthly fees apply to healthcare professionals
  • Free video software optimised within the platform 
  • Available voice note dictation functionality
  • Reminders about appointments to patients via the platform 

Security concerns

With regards to security concerns surrounding consultations held virtually between users and healthcare professionals, the platform uses a secure and custom video platform, ensuring both confidentiality and the protection of their personal information.

“OllieConnect video is HIPAA compliant, with the ability to record appointments to keep as consultation notes,” explains Ollie Health. 

Integrating a ‘”TikTok” style vertical within the app, users are able to scroll and explore different doctors, allowing more freedom to access the best professional for them. 

Ensuring that it is an easy-to-use app, Ollie Health is available for download on both Android and iOs devices and requires no signup or download to enter consultations via a “one-click link”. 

“With one-click-links neither patients nor healthcare professionals need to download video apps or jump between platforms to conduct appointments,”‘ concludes Ollie Health.

Read more: Kenyan health tech startup secures $1.1-million funding
Read more: SA healthtech startup secures seed investment

Featured image: Marc Knowles, CEO, and co-founder of Ollie Health (Supplied) 



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