Aetna International – Best Patient Platform FINALIST – 2018


Aetna International provides private medical insurance to more than 800,000 members around the globe.

In conjunction with the Indian Health Organisation, an Indian health care benefits company, it launched vHealth in November 2017, a primary health platform for Indian consumers to help engage with the medical profession and overcome a lack of trust in the health system. In an attempt to reduce physical consultations, patients can get unlimited teleconsultations, receive follow-ups, guidance and ongoing support. It has an outpatient network in 38 cities across India.

Since it began, 800,000 people have signed up to the service and 16,000 teleconsultations have taken place. Aenta says the app has driven a 60% increase in contract sales in 2017 and an increase in coverage of 78%. The app has led to a 70% reduction in the need for physical consultations, reducing costs for the patient.


Briefly describe the organisation giving the number of facilities, staff, revenue numbers.

This nomination is submitted by Aetna International in conjunction with subsidiary company Indian Health Organization (IHO).

Should the nomination be successful, Aetna International will be the named winner.

Aetna International is committed to helping create a stronger, healthier global community by delivering comprehensive health care benefits and population health solutions worldwide.  One of the largest providers of international private medical insurance services, Aetna International serves more than 800,000 members worldwide, including expatriates, local nationals and business travellers. Its global benefits include medical, dental, vision and emergency assistance and, in some regions, life and disability.

Indian Health Organisation (IHO) is one of India’s leading health care benefits company enabling people to effectively manage their health and lead a happy life. With an aim to make quality health care affordable and accessible, IHO offers prepaid health packages that provide access to quality preventive care and treatment. IHO is connected with over 16,500 health care partners offering high level service standards. Standardised and transparent concessional rates are available across hospitals, diagnostic centers, nursing homes, pharmacies, home care providers and clinics.

Please describe the patient platform. What precisely does it enable the patient to do? Please list as a series of functions

vHealth by Aetna addresses fundamental issues for Indian consumers. Their reluctance to engage with the medical profession driven by a lack of trust in the health care system. The poor experience when they do see doctors with appointments lasting less than five minutes in many cases. And an over reliance on searching the internet for diagnosis and remedies. 

The patient platform is vHealth by Aetna, a global digital primary health care platform that allows IHO members to contact doctors remotely via desktop computers, tablets and mobile devices. The platform is designed to reduce the need for physical consultations and empower IHO members to manage their family health effectively. With the focus on clinical excellence, digital technology and a wide network of health care partners, vHealth by Aetna is redefining primary health care in India.

vHealth by Aetna enables patients to:

  • Convenient Access to Experienced Doctors – talk to highly experienced doctors who are certified specialists in medical tele-consultations.
  • Quality Time and Guidance – spend 15-20 minutes with a vHealth doctor and receive regular follow-ups that provide post-treatment support, health care guidance and on-going support.
  • Accurate Diagnosis and Treatment – be diagnosed by experienced doctors trained in the use of clinical protocols allied to telemedicine diagnosis skills e.g. listening for breathing patterns to get a rounded picture of the patient and asking specific types of questions. This enables the causes of symptoms to be more accurately identified, and appropriate treatment recommended.
  • Comprehensive Eco-System – benefit from medical services like home diagnostic facilities, medicine delivery and appointments for physical consultations, if required.
  • Unlimited Teleconsultations – available to IHO members and their families during the year via a toll free number or mobile Android and iOS app.

vHealth by Aetna has an extensive outpatient network of high quality medical professionals spread across 38 cities in India. The service delivers end-to-end care by providing access a host of medical services like diagnostic tests, medicine delivery and minor treatment support via the telephone, PC or mobile device.

A practical example of how vHealth by Aetna is having a positive effect:

Blood tests are a common route to diagnosing symptoms for many people in India and many patients will have a test as a first port of call when an issue arises. However, blood tests are often not taken in a clinic and patients are unable to understand the results, often looking to the internet for additional information. vHealth doctors solve this problem by helping patients to properly understand what their results mean and advising on the best course of action.

Please provide a link to an online demonstration of the device

What in your opinion makes the platform unique?

vHealth by Aetna provides a holistic level of care to members and, in this way, is different from the other remote health care platforms in the Indian market that are often just a medical marketplace. vHealth by Aetna provides a holistic level of care to members and, in this way, is different from the other remote health care platforms in the Indian market that are often just a medical marketplace.

vHealth by Aetna:

• allows members to connect with doctors quickly, easily and at their convenience, and to spend quality time discussing their condition.

• enables doctors to connect members to the most appropriate next stage of care; a test at home, a prescription delivery or a specialist appointment within an approved medical network.

• provides the member with proactive follow-up care from their doctor, to help them understand their treatment or rehabilitation plan and to support their recovery.

When was the service first launched?

vHealth by Aetna was first launched in November 2016

What impact has the platform had on your business?

How many users have signed up for the service?

Since November 2016, over 800,000 consumers have subscribed to vHealth by Aetna and the service has already provided over 16,000 teleconsultations. The vHealth app allows patients to rate the doctors immediately post their consultation and has largely received the highest ratings.

How many have subsequently become active users) (We would expect this to be a small percentage of the sign ups). Please define what exactly you mean by an active user

The annualized usage rate for vHealth by Aetna amongst its members is currently at 7.5%. With the notion of contacting doctors virtually in India being relatively new, this in an impressive figure. 

Have you a net promoter score for the service from active users? If so, what is it? 

vHealth has a net promoter score of +36 with over 75% of the patients rating the service 8 or higher out of 10.

Has it led to any incremental increase in revenue? If so, how can you best quantify this?

vHealth by Aetna has been instrumental in driving a 60% increase contract sales during 2017 and a 78% increase in customers covered.

Those using vHealth have experienced a 70% reduction in the need for physical consultations, meaning families have seen a drastic fall in their annual health care spend.