How the New Vonage & OutSystems Partnership Impacts Lives

The COVID-19 pandemic has acted as a catalyst and accelerator for the digital transformation wave affecting every industry, from banking to education, from logistics to commerce, from movie theaters to travel. The world had to adapt abruptly to save lives -- as well as businesses.

A father consulting with a doctor over video with daughter

To cope with the pandemic’s impact, organizations around the world have had to rethink their processes at record pace. Among those processes are “user journeys,” which describe how a given user interacts from start to finish with an organization. Across industries, these journeys have had to be revamped.

The collaboration between Vonage and OutSystems helps to serve fundamental needs of businesses by marrying the strengths of two leaders in their fields: 

  • OutSystems is the application development platform adopted by a growing number of leading enterprises to rapidly create workflows and mission-critical applications. 

  • The Vonage Communications Platform (VCP) enables organizations to quickly embed cloud communications in those digital processes and applications.

Due to social distancing and remote work in particular, the traditional interactions with customers and employees are being reinvented - and this will continue in 2021 and beyond.  

Nowhere was this more critical during the height of the pandemic than in healthcare. Indeed, healthcare systems have needed to adjust patient interactions in order to continue to safely and effectively deliver prevention, detection and treatment. 

One country hit particularly hard by COVID-19 has been Brazil. According to Brazil’s Ministry of Health, over 15 million infections had been recorded as of mid-May 2021, resulting in 425,000 fatalities. Unimed-BH is a top healthcare provider in Brazil, serving Belo Horizonte, the capital city of the southeastern state of Minas Gerais.

Faced with the pandemic, Unimed-BH had to act fast to build a telemedicine solution that would be robust and flexible -- while at the same time enabling reliable connections despite internet challenges in the region.

Dr. Eudes Arantes Magalhães, Administrative and Financial Director of Unimed-BH said, “Unimed-BH was able to quickly deploy a high quality telemedicine solution in 2020” - and that was only possible by choosing OutSystems and Vonage.

As a result, Unimed-BH helped control the COVID-19 pandemic in the Belo Horizonte metropolitan area. It conducted more than 370,000 teleconsultations since 2020 with patients suspected of having the virus. Those patients were seen directly from their home, without the need to travel to a medical facility.

Thanks to the Vonage APIs available on the OutSystems application development environment,  Unimed-BH was able to quickly serve multiple telehealth needs including:

  • elective teleconsultation 

  • home care visits

  • consultations to support primary care doctors

  • tele-nursing for specialties such as stomatherapy

Together, Vonage and OutSystems helped make access to healthcare possible even at a distance at a time when social isolation was sorely needed.

Dr. Magalhães adds, “Through a partnership with the Belo Horizonte City Hall, Unimed-BH provided the platform for users of the public health system, contributing decisively to control the pandemic in our Region." 

According to the Brazilian Ministry of Health, Minas Gerais has dealt with the pandemic with significantly better outcomes than the neighboring states of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. In other words, lives were saved.

Hybrid Healthcare Journeys of the Future

Telemedicine is not the only illustration of how cloud communications and modern digital workflows have made a dramatic impact and improved outcomes in sectors like healthcare. Transformations continue to impact organizations worldwide. 

As countries deploy vaccination campaigns and businesses begin to reopen, we are seeing a growing number of new hybrid user journeys, which combine physical and virtual interactions.

A hybrid user journey begins with the need to verify the identity of the user. 2-factor authentication helps companies to safely do that digitally. Then as the journey unfolds, further communication happens within that same workflow, using outbound calls, SMS or social media messaging or a video session with a company representative or a medical professional. 

The healthcare industry is leveraging hybrid journeys to help enhance the patient experience, through the pandemic and beyond. Recent academic research has shown that a well-crafted vaccination message can measurably improve the response if the provider sends SMS texts telling the recipient that a vaccine has been reserved for them. SMS messages prior to appointments can also minimize no-shows, and messaging the patients post-visit ensures that they follow the doctor’s recommendations with respect to behaviors or taking medications, what’s known as medical adherence.

The digital transformation wave that started a few years ago, and which was accelerated during the pandemic, is now expanding in 2021 as more organizations embrace modern application development and cloud communications platforms. The Vonage partnership with OutSystems further enables those organizations to rapidly update workflows that impact the lives of the people in their care, be they customers, patients, students, constituents or employees.

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