doctHERs: How professionally marginalised, home-restricted female doctors can provide Lady Health Worker-Assisted Telemedicine in Urban Slums & Remote, Rural Communities...



Type: Civil Society | Categories:

Provide a clear and concrete project summary, with as much details as relevant for the Selection Committee to fully understand the extent of the benefits that the nominated project has bring to the community it serves.Please note this summary will be publicly available and it will be use to promote your project during the Community Choice Award online voting period.

doctHERs is a novel healthcare marketplace that connects home-restricted female doctors to millions of underserved patients in real-time while leveraging technology. doctHERs circumvents socio-cultural barriers that restrict women to their homes, while correcting two market failures: access to quality healthcare and gainful employment. doctHERs leapfrogs traditional market approaches to healthcare delivery and drives innovative, sytems change. For example doctHERS can access urban/rural patients through mobile and internet enabled technologies/vídeo-conferencing • Trained, trusted community Nurses/ Health Workers/Midwives assist DoctHERS in assessing patients at ‘point-of-care’ using diagnostic tools which creates a new ‘healthcare value chain’ • doctHERs can work across the healthcare sector: operate 24/7 tele-healthlines, conduct medical/claims reviews, contract services to health plans (PPOs, health insurance companies), promote health/wellness coaching and trainings via web, IVR-enabled health modules or SMS-enabled localized health messaging.

Over the past 18 months, doctHERs has provided ICT-enabled telehealth services in Sultanabad, an urban slum of 250,000 lives in Karachi which is inhabited by marginalised migrant workers.

Please provide background information that allows the Selection Committee to understand the context in which your organization operates. What are the main challenges? What is the problem the project was set up to address? Please indicate when the project started.

80% of all medical school graduates in Pakistan are women, yet only 25% ever practice due socio-cultural constraints. In the same Pakistan, 95% women living in poverty can not access affordable, quality healthcare and have never seen a qualified doctor. Stuck in this status quo, millions of marginalized women face unnecessary high maternal-child mortality/morbidity, sadly in the presence of promising doctors who have historically been unable to reach them. All the while, the same Pakistan boasts 85% penetration of mobile access to mobile & internet technology. Given the significant demad-supply mismatch between doctors and patients, it behooves us to question how we can use information and communications technology to bridge this gap?

What are the main reasons why your organization was motivated to initiate the project? Did the project respond to specific needs of a community?

Who was in charge of the project implementation? What other organizations/groups participated? Please provide information about the organizational arrangements that allowed the project to be implemented.

What are the main project objective(s) and what was the strategy used to achieve them?

(i) Connect home-restricted female health professionals to marginalised communities who lack access to quality, affordable healthcare

(ii) Train and Capacitate community-based Lady Health Workers on how to provide communities in urban slums and remote rural areas with access to doctHERs

Please provide more details about the technical aspects of your project implementation. Describe what technologies were used, how they were integrated, what is innovative about it, etc.? Without detailed technical information the nomination will be automatically rejected.

ICT-enabled videoconsultation
ICT-enabled 24/7 Telehealth (healthcare delivered via mobile phones)
Electronic Health Records (of patients visiting clinics or using doctHERs)
ICT-enabled Clinical Management System

What were the most relevant activities conducted during the course of the project? Indicate if those activities have been completed or are on-going.

(i) Conducted preventive health workshops delivered by video for 5000 urban slum dwellers
(ii) provided 7500 patients with high-quality primary care
(iii) Established a telemedicine-equipped Community Health Center in Sultanabad

Provide a list of the most relevant outcomes achieved as part of the project activities.

Telehealth-facilitated OB/GYN consultations have led to 70+ safe hospital deliveries • 500 lives have been saved by providing them with access to life-saving interventions/surgery

Describe what dissemination efforts were completed during the last year to promote your project. Include lists of publications, marketing materials, etc.

• PBS Newshour
• Christian Science Monitor
• Forbes
• Fast Company
• Stanford Social Innovation Review
• Center for Health Market Innovations
• Foreign Policy Magazine

Please let us know if your organization or your project team has received any awards or distinctions, specially those related to the nominated project

2013: GE/Changemakers Innovation Award 2013: Rockefeller Foundation Centennial Innovation Challenge 2012: G20 Financial Inclusion Challenge Award 2012: Wall Street Journal Asia Innovation Award Finalist 2011: WEF/Schwab Foundation Asia Social Entrepreneur of the Year

✕  The nominated project has been operational for at least one year. The community has already received the benefits of the activities.

Website from your organization

Explain why this project deserves the prize

doctHERs is the first ICT-enabled model anywhere in the world (that we are aware of) that specifically and exclusively integrates home-based medical health providers who have otherwise been marginalised from the health workforce. In addition, it provides skills-training and gainful employment for community-based lady health workers (LHWs) in remote, rural communities and connects them to urban-based doctHERs via telemedicine in a manner which creates significant impact and tangible value for end-users/beneficiaries.

YouTube movie about the project

Facebook profile or Facebook page from the organization or project leader

Twitter profile from the organization or project leader


Google+ profile from the organization or project leader


Provide at least one link to other websites, newspapers, blogs, etc. providing evidence about the work conducted by your self, your project and/or your organization.’s-first-dedicated-health-plan-marginalized-takes

Provide at least one file with supporting documentation about your organization’s capacity to manage grants, references to support the need for such solution to be developed, reference letters from partners, etc.


Project Representative

Dr. Ashar Hasan

Project Representative on Linkedin :

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