Ramesh Krishnan and Sumitha Karthik | Medagg Healthcare


Hospital discovery platform MEDAGG’s co-Founders Ramesh and Sumitha are adding clarity and sanity to the care experience for patients and end-users through the power of aggregating data, counselling and choice. 


Ramesh Krishnan and Sumitha Karthik are the Co-Founders of Medagg Healthcare, Tamil Nadu’s largest hospital discovery platform are on their way to transform patient experience in hospitals. Their platform makes the process of discovering healthcare options for elective procedures a whole new experience empowering patients with comprehensive information before making their choice. 


Ramesh Krishnan is a seasoned healthcare management professional, who prior to founding Medagg, held key positions in the industry including that of South Asia CEO for IHH (Parkway Pantai). He was also the operating partner for the healthcare platform of Everstone capital and is an experienced M&A professional. A HBS and IIFT Alumni, Ramesh has also spent close to 10 years of his professional life in key positions in the Pharma industry as well. 

Sumitha Karthik is an Alumus of the Indian School of Business (ISB) and brings with her more than 20 years of experience in operations across the healthcare and aviation industries. She has run operations of Gleneagles global hospitals and Fortis hospitals apart from having been the head of crew operations across South India for Jet Airways. 

We are honoured to have two stalwarts from the industry in our midst, and begin by probing into the core idea driving the journey. Below are excerpts from the exchange. 


What is the one big concept or philosophy that defines you and your success mantra? 

Enabling everyone’s right to the right healthcare at the right cost is something that has been the passion of both of us and that is the sole reason for us to have enjoyed our journey in the healthcare industry. Playing a role in helping patients and patient families in finding this right healthcare option that suits their budget, their need and convenience, has been the guiding factor for founding Medagg which is short for Medical Aggregation.


How did the concept snowball into the grand journey it is today? Any significant triggers or experiences catalysing it forward? 

“We have as healthcare operators, had numerous people within friends and family, reaching out to us seeking guidance on how to locate the ideal hospital/healthcare provider. This gave us a realization that there are probably millions of people out there who do not have healthcare operators within their circles to reach out to for such informal advise. This is what led us to the idea of formalizing this advisory in the form of Medagg.” 


All driven leaders have a burning target they want to crack. The x in the proverbial equation. What is your X?

“Medagg hopes to become the largest hospital discovery platform. We have started off with Tamil Nadu and have already aggregated more than 1000 hospitals in the state. We empower patients and patient families with the ease of searching alternate hospital options without the hassle of having to make personal visits to multiple hospitals or visit multiple websites. After all, in a world when Amazon and Swiggy have made “options” a part of everyone’s life and run successful businesses out of it, why would choice of hospitals not come into the hands of people?”


What’s unique about Medagg? What sets them apart from others in the market?

“As opposed to some of the recent surgery consolidation platforms which limit the number of affiliated hospitals per city,, Medagg works out of a much larger affiliation base of hospitals. We are across 9 cities and towns across the state of TN with more than 1000 affiliated hospital already. We host these options on a bilingual website / App.
With its wide affiliation base of hospitals, Medagg is able to offer the patient a min of 3 options across any of the treatments, big and small. In the process, Medagg is also able to bring to the knowledge of the patient certain unique procedures and treatment modalities which otherwise may not be widely known


Two unique characters have been incorporated in this process of helping the patient/family:

A -“Care Custodian” is a personal healthcare counsellor who helps the patient/family navigate and analyse the various options and eventually choose the right one.

B -“Care companion” is a personal assistant who will accompany the patient throughout the treatment journey.

Both the Custodians as well as the Companions are experienced hospital operators / healthcare workers who know the nuances of hospital operations and will hence be in a position to help the patient / family to navigate the various administrative steps during hospitalization. This helps the patient avoid common challenges like: 

a.    Unexpected wait times for consultation. 

b.    Unclear and vague treatment cost estimates from hospitals.

c.    Lack of clarity on insurance coverage. 

d.    Frustrating admission and discharge processes. 

e.    Lack of proper feedback from the hospital staff / doctors on the admitted patient’s progress.


We are curious about how MEDAGG fits in the context of the larger ecosystem scenario, and the leaders generously share their proprietary insights…

“In the larger context, even as India is still ramping up its available beds per capita,  the available beds as of today are mostly available in the small hospital (50 to 70 beds) segment. With the change in cost and price structures in the industry over the past several years, these small hospitals have been rendered unviable due to unit economics, unless they are single specialty units. Typically, the unit economics of multispecialty hospitals becomes viable for a capacity above 120 beds. In this scenario, the smaller hospitals struggle to allocate marketing budgets to bring about awareness amongst patients about their service.

On the other hand, the government has set itself a clear vision that while it wants to provide healthcare for its 1.3 bn people, it will only act as a “payor” and not a “provider”. It is obvious that when a government takes this position of a payor in a social industry such as healthcare, it is the recipe for price controls to come about. We are already seeing some of this playing out in the form of state and central schemes which define and limit pricing across multiple treatments.

Such controlled pricing can if at all manageable, can only be managed in smaller hospitals which are struggling to bring about awareness about their services. So we live in a dichotomy where low healthcare prices as defined by government regulation can be managed only in smaller hospitals but these small hospitals are struggling for survival. The ideal solution to this is consolidation. This is a similar scenario when OYO came in to consolidate the small hotels segment. MEDAGG is envisioned as one of the several models of aggregation that have started playing out as OYO equivalents in the healthcare space.”


We wish Ramesh and Sumitha the very best in their efforts of bringing method in the madness of the customer’s decision making journey. As we proceed to conclude, we request them for their quick views on the Voice of Healthcare platform. The dynamic duo shares generously…

“VOH has taken up a commendable effort in bringing out to the knowledge of everyone, the innumerable innovations that are happening in the healthcare space. This is not only an encouragement for entrepreneurs but also a way to reach their products out to more and more audience!”

*This story is published by VOH team.*

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