MDBX Health making healthcare easier, accessible, and less lonely

MDBX Health making healthcare easier, accessible, and less lonely

Sarah Miller, founder and CEO of MDBX Health, an Abu Dhabi-based health tech startup, talks about how one day she had a eureka moment and decided to start a unified, HIPAA-compliant digital platform for efficient chronic disease management to make patient’s life more enriching.

What inspired you to create a chronic disease management platform?
I learned so much from the people I have worked with over the past decade in the UAE. I had coffee with them every day, watched their pain, watched their isolation… I hurt for them and their families when they passed. I couldn’t help then, but eventually, I woke up with a eureka moment. 95% of healthcare is delivered at home by the patient – why is there no support there?

Can you provide an overview of how your platform works and the specific diseases it focuses on?
MDBX Health manages complex medications for people suffering from chronic disease. It consolidates all prescriptions into a single list, checks and organizes them into a regime and sends notifications to the patient explaining what to take and when. It allows the family to track and remind the patient.  It is coupled with a packaging service that puts all meds into a time/date stamped sachet – so no more bottles and boxes. This is tethered to the platform.

How does your platform differentiate itself from other healthcare solutions available in the market?
Unlike other digital offerings, our platform doesn’t replace any part of the health system; rather, it builds digital bridges between pharmacists, physicians, patients, and families. We strengthen the impact of the UAE’s amazing healthcare infrastructure, creating a completely agnostic platform that anyone can use to make healthcare easier, more accessible, and less lonely.

What impact do you hope to make on patients’ lives through your platform?
77% of deaths are caused by chronic disease – even though 80% of it is preventable or manageable by taking medication. By simplifying it, we can increase medication adherence by 300%. It makes life less painful, longer, less isolating for our patients – but also has a profound effect on the families of patients, who are currently powerless to support from afar.

How do you ensure the security and privacy of patient data on your platform?
Our platform was designed and built from scratch by a team led by our CTO, who has developed systems for the military here in the UAE. At its core, the system’s priority is security and safety. All of our data is stored in-country, is HIPAA compliant, and complies with local legislation and standards.

What feedback have you received from patients and healthcare professionals using your platform?
Prior to utilizing MDBX offerings, many people didn’t realize how many doses were being missed, so it’s a huge learning curve. Many found that they tend to forget meds during a busy work day and find the small sachets and reminders make it significantly easier to manage meds. The outcome across the board is that life is much easier, and over time so is health and longevity.

How do you collaborate with healthcare providers to integrate your platform into their practices?
Providers can white-label our service to provide digital services of their own without investing heavily. Outcomes and patient loyalty are improved, and so is patient satisfaction. Pharmacies can use our service to facilitate broader reach and added value. We are also happy to integrate into almost any system.

Can you share any success stories or case studies of patients who have benefited from using your platform?
One early patient reported before using MDBX Health reported missing 2-3 doses per month, but after using the platform, found that it was more like 20-30 doses per month. He saved around 20 hours per month without the need to sort meds into pillboxes, and we know his outlook means his healthcare is 50% more effective and 45% cheaper for the system.

What are some of your biggest challenges in developing and scaling your platform?
Many digital health products are entering the market. These products must be well designed and fit the market to avoid fatiguing patients with replicas or subpar products. This fatigue makes it difficult to gain patient buy-in. Thus, finding the right kind of products and partnering with trusted, existing market components is critical for scaling.

How do you stay updated on the latest advancements and research in chronic disease management to continually improve your platform?
We do everything we can to ensure the power of diagnostics and treatment stays with the physicians, but the power of choice, knowledge, and support is with the patient. In our next phases, we will deploy existing APIs and machine learning to enhance the patient’s power and strengthen physicians’ and pharmacists’ ability to deliver outcomes.

In what ways do you envision your platform evolving in the future to better serve patients’ needs?
We are very much a startup, which means we are constantly adapting and iterating to meet the needs of our patients. Our appetite for closely observing our product-market fit will not fade, as it shouldn’t in healthcare. We will continually build and partner for new functionalities that fit patients’ needs – better control, understanding and support.

How do you ensure accessibility and inclusivity for users with diverse backgrounds and needs on your platform?
One of the first things we acknowledged was the need for a multilingual, accessible platform, given the nature of our users. We also noted that many of our users are not tech-savvy. Therefore, we designed our platform to serve our users via third parties, i.e., nurses, maids, family members, etc. Any one patient may have 3-4 people accessing their system to provide support on different devices.


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