Praveen Gowdru | VMEDO
A biomedical engineer by education and a distinguished alumnus of the prestigious Manipal Institute of Technology (where he completed his masters in Medical Software), Praveen comes from a humble background of agriculturists who hail from the malnad region of Karnataka.
The man was always passionate about Innovation and bringing technology to healthcare. A personal tragedy in his hometown strengthened the motivation and resolve further, inspiring Praveen to give up a lucrative career in Medical Image Processing at a multinational like Philips and start-up his own venture VMEDO - with the help of his childhood friend, Darshan.
VMEDO is an integrated Emergency Healthcare platform that brings all the stakeholders of the Healthcare ecosystem together on one single technology platform and empowers them with knowledge, tools and connections. Through VMEDO, one can get access to information, services and products to save lives during medical emergencies.
We start the session by probing about the big idea or vision that defines this passionate leader and his endeavor. Praveen responds….
“At VMEDO we believe that everyone deserves better healthcare. People across the world should have access to quality and affordable healthcare despite their geography and socio-economic status. We envision a day where someone living in a village or a villa should have accessibility to the same kind of quality care.”
An ardent evangelist of technology, Praveen believes tech carries the potential to upend the maladies that currently ail the system. In his own words, “Today the healthcare ecosystem is fragmented and unorganized, far from our vision of having universal accessibility to uniform healthcare. It is limited to a few geographies and to people who can afford it. This is leaving a majority of underprivileged with disease, disability and death. I believe technology is the only hope we have to bring connectivity, transparency and continuity required for better care.
Most journeys of disruption have a moment of revelation that defines and sustains it. So why and how did this philosophy become the driving force of Praveen’s journey? Was there any person or life-altering experience or turning-point that caused it or inspired it? As it turns out, there was. Praveen recalls…
“A tragedy in the family where we struggled to get an ambulance, hospital admission and a blood donor during an emergency made me realize how bad our healthcare system is.
When I dug deeper, I realized that over 90% of the global population lack access to timely emergency care. This very incident made me deeply connected to the problem and also defined the purpose of my life. I wanted to contribute to change this situation and help save more lives. With the help of my childhood friend, I am trying to make this happen by co-founding VMEDO.”
We are curious about the kind of impact and response VMEDO has been creating and received on-the-ground. Praveen shares the details…
“VMEDO today is helping people to be emergency prepared and get assistance during emergencies. With the power of technology, we aim to utilize the critical information and connections required during emergencies and hence save time and avoid confusion.
With a fleet of over 2,500 ambulances, a network of over 100 hospitals, 20,000+ blood donors, 100+ skilling programs and medical products on the platform, we have trained over 10,000 people, served over a lakh people during emergencies and distributed over 1 million medical products.
The stories of people going to extreme lengths to save lives that we listen to every day keeps us motivated to do more. We will continue to impact more lives through innovation and collaboration. The same stories will encourage more lifesavers and samaritans to come on the platform and make it more powerful.
With only a few people and partners on the platform, we have already seen thousands of people getting benefitted and lives saved. We have earned the trust of some of the best hospitals and corporations as their ‘Emergency partners’ to keep their patients and employees safe and emergency prepared. With every stakeholder playing a role and a need to be served, VMEDO is creating an ecosystem effect. VMEDO believes in the mantra "Together, we save more lives". With more people on the platform, more lives will be saved.”
So what are the big goals on his cross-hairs? Where is the team headed to next? “Our vision is to make this platform global and save more lives. However, we are still in the infant stage. We will continue to bring more people on the platform, expand the platform to different geographies and use the power of data and technology to bring better intelligence and analysis to prevent emergencies, save time and deliver better Emergency care”, says Praveen, giving us a peek into the future.
The journeys of idea leaders who have the vision to think fresh and the courage to follow that up with deft execution, often turns into templates of inspiration for the next generation of achievers. So what would his advice or mantra be for aspiring entrepreneurs? Praveen reflects before articulating…
“The technological revolution in healthcare has only just started. The challenges in this field are so immense that it leads to a lot of opportunities for the future leaders to think about bringing change and leave behind a legacy in the healthcare industry.
However, my advice would be to keep in mind that technology will never be able to replace humans. Better healthcare still needs human compassion and care along with technology. So, it calls for an optimal balance to both technology and human touch to design future healthcare solutions.”
It’s been a delightful peek into the life and journey of one of new India’s significant entrepreneurs, and we request Praveen to sign off this enlightening session with a short line or two about VOH. The multi-faceted founder who leads by example generously shares…
“Unlike any other sector, being in the healthcare space needs a lot of patience and hard work to bring change and prove yourself. Dedicated segments like Idea Leaders by VOH brings a lot of motivation, confidence and learning opportunities for healthcare entrepreneurs like me. I would like to thank the entire team of VOH for this opportunity to share my thoughts here and look forward to more such initiatives from VOH.”
*This story is published by VOH team*
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