Origins of Medicine in Indian Civilization
Before we understand the story behind scaling a Healthcare Startup in India with Technology, let us understand a bit more about the origins of healthcare in Indian Civilization.
Unlike most other countries, healthcare in India has its origins in myths, mythology and tradition. In fact, like other ancient civilizations, Indian Mythology has a god for medicine – Dhanvantari. In the Puranas, he is the god of Ayurveda. He is the god that rose during the churning of the ocean of milk with the nectar of immortality.
Indian Contributions to Medicine
India has given to the World, Ayurveda, an alternative medicine system. Ayurvedic texts categorize and identify herbs, vegetables and fruits into those beneficial to a certain bodily disposition. This has found it way into daily Indian cooking thru various healthy recipes and concoctions.
The Father of Modern Plastic Surgery is from India
There are significant contributions to modern healthcare from the West. However, it would surprise many of us that the father of Modern Plastic Surgery is in fact from India – Shushruta. Shushruta’s book on Medicine is an important to World medical literature.
Scaling by Changing Behaviors and Beliefs
Given India’s significant contribution to healthcare and the various age old recipes and beliefs, treating modern lifestyle type diseases becomes a challenge. Lifestyle diseases such as Diabetes, Heart Ailments become tougher to treat as care does not match lifestyle choices. Most care procedures originate in the west and make it difficult to adapt to Indian lifestyle choices.
This is the social background for Scaling a Healthcare Startup in India with Technology.
Origins of Wellthy Therapeutics
Abhishek Shah of Wellthy had an interesting upbringing. He was an engineer and had a scientific bent of mind. His parents were successful entrepreneurs. However, Abhishek saw that existing care was not catching up with their lifestyles.
Working with Ronnie Screwvala and investing in startups gave him an outside in perspective on ventures. How did he combine the two to build and put Wellthy Therapeutics on the path to scale? How did he succeed in Scaling a Healthcare Startup in India with Technology? That story is here
Here are some excerpts from the Episode:
I think we set out to solve a problem in a very different way, I guess. It was a first principle approach to be able to solve for healthcare, I was fortunate to see how very interesting technology enabled companies had built themselves out over the last two years before I started Wellthy.[01:55] Abhishek
So, let’s dig into that outcome term a little bit. What was the trigger? It is one thing to see a bunch of people, you know, build tech around health and come from a healthcare background, but there must have been some sort of a trigger, what was the trigger? And do a deep dive on the outcomes that you’re referring to.[03:42] Krishna
Both my parents are alpha males and alpha females. They are both individual first-generation healthcare entrepreneurs, they run health care businesses themselves, and therefore getting anything across to them and making them change their habits is a miracle.[07:36] Abhishek
I’ve asked myself the same question. I think it was much younger than that. I don’t think it was as mature a I thought, it was a problem that I felt was worth solving.[18:24] Abhishek
It’s so fascinating, the role that the environment sometimes you unwittingly discover the environment you grew up in unwittingly ends up helping, right?[22:52] Krishna
So, first things first, we didn’t start as an app, we started as a study on WhatsApp. And I think that was very transformative for us because even before we went and built out an entire product suite, it was first really important to check that independent of the user interface, does the science work?[26:35] Abhishek
Word Cloud for this Episode
Abhishek Shah on Twitter here: @abhinshah
Maharajas of Scale on Twitter here: @maharajaofscale
Follow Krishna Jonnakadla on Twitter here: @kjonnakadla