Pet healthcare market needs tech-driven solutions: An interview with VetAPP
The number of pet owners is rapidly increasing – today, an estimated 70% of households in the US have a pet at home. As a natural consequence, the need for pet products and veterinary services is also expanding at high rates.
Despite the rising demand, the supply in certain areas of the pet healthcare market – more specifically veterinary services – is not reacting proportionally. Vets are becoming harder and harder to come by – in the US, there are just 0,8 specialists on average per 1000 pets.
At the same time, the sector is lagging behind in terms of the technological tools that are used and is still plagued by old-fashioned and inefficient practices that make the situation even more difficult to cope with.
VetAPP is a novel blockchain-based application that connects pet owners and veterinarians and uses a revolutionary AI tool for pre-diagnosis. The project was initiated by a team of experts ranging from vet clinic owners to experts in medical technology and AI specialists with a considerable track record in the healthcare market.
We asked the project to provide us with a high-level overview of the issues in the market based on their in-depth insight to find out how these issues can be resolved through new technological solutions.
1. What are the issues that pet healthcare marketing is facing and why do you believe that technology holds the key to their resolution? Aren’t methodological and legal changes also necessary to solve some of these problems?
The pet healthcare market has a variety of problems – from its high degree of fragmentation to the harsh working conditions for vets.
The new regulatory framework, as well as methodological changes, would be indeed extremely useful in several key areas – for example when it comes to patient records that are currently non-existent in the sector due to the high legal restrictions or the clunky requirements for the processing of personal information that causes an additional workload on vets.
Vets are perhaps the stakeholder group in the pet healthcare industry that would benefit the most from technological solutions. Here is a fact that very few people are aware of – the profession of a veterinary specialist is among the most stressful in our modern society.
A study by the American Veterinary Medical Association in 2018 among nearly 4000 students and practitioners concluded that two-thirds of them experienced some sort of depression.
This reality is due to two key reasons – the scarcity of vets and the outdated practices and tools they currently have to work with. The sector is stuck in the 80s of the previous century and most of the time vets at clinics spent on administrative tasks such as dealing with appointments and paperwork.
This is where we believe technology can help – for example by using tools that can automate the administrative work, blockchain technology for shared medical records, and even AI to make diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of pets much easier and faster.
2. So veterinarians would greatly benefit from technology-driven solutions? Which areas would be the focus in your opinion?
One of the main areas where we believe we can really provide vets with considerable changes is the pre-diagnosis and diagnosis phase. On average, in 70% of cases when people decide to bring their pets to the vet office, it turns out that there is nothing wrong with the animal.
It is not the owner’s fault – they see unusual signs and are simply uncertain whether there is an emergency or any health issue with their pet. This, however, costs time and resources for vets who need to jump between cases and have less time to spend on average. Many clinics are understaffed, even some emergency offices have only one vet working at certain times.
Our AI tool for pre-diagnosis can potentially take care of most of that 70% that end up at the vet’s office when they don’t necessarily need to. The pet owner is guided through the questionnaire, which adjusts dynamically to the pet data the owner provides. In the end, the AI tool determines whether a visit to the vet is necessary.
Another area where we believe we are adding considerable improvements is the overall workflow for vets when it comes to the administrative side of their work – more specifically on booking management and paperwork. Our app will provide a variety of functionalities that can automate a great deal of this area so that vets can focus on where their skills are needed the most – treatment.
By enforcing a digital change in the pet healthcare market, the VetAPP project lays out the foundations for a better future for every stakeholder in the market – from owners to vets and, most importantly, our beloved pets. To learn more details about the project, visit www.vetapp.io, consider subscribing to their newsletter, and read the Whitepaper.
Disclaimer: This is a paid post and should not be treated as news/advice.