Vohesu’s Chronic Disease PAL on the Amazon Alexa platform is a conversational, on-demand health assistant that improves outcomes and lowers the cost of care for patients living with chronic diseases. Over 133 million Americans (40% of the U.S. population) suffer from chronic diseases, and Vohesu’s Chronic Disease PAL makes it easy for these patients and their families to access medically accurate answers to all their chronic disease questions, wherever and whenever they need them.
A 20-year cancer survivor, Ken Sakal, Founder and CEO of Vohesu, combined his personal experience with his professional healthcare background to create Vohesu’s Chronic Disease PAL.
“I’ve walked in the shoes of a patient diagnosed with a chronic disease,” he explains. “When you go to the doctor’s office, you can’t process all the information they are telling you. You go home, and you have all these questions, and there’s really no place to go, no one to talk to get answers to your questions.”
While working in the healthcare industry, Ken saw the need for access to patient education information continuing to be unmet. Through Vohesu’s patient interviews, Ken observed the way patients deal with this gap today.
“Far too many people are going to webpages and getting incorrect information, that it’s actually causing problems,” Ken says. “Sometimes the misinformation that’s out there, is sending the patients down the wrong treatment path, which leads to patients going back into the doctor’s office, or even worse, into the hospital. Our goal is to reduce the additional costs associated with these unnecessary additional visits. Chronic diseases account for over 80% of the United States $3.3 trillion in healthcare costs, and we have to take steps to reduce these costs.”
Vohesu curates well-researched and well-written information on chronic diseases and incorporates it into a conversational interface on Amazon Alexa. The Chronic Disease PAL is now available for Rheumatoid Arthritis. Other diagnoses like psoriasis, IBD, diabetes, and eventually cancer are all in the pipeline, as well as delivery on other technology platforms, like chat-bots and Google Home.
Ken Sakal, Vohesu Founder & CEO
The Chronic Disease PAL’s bottom-line beneficiaries are, of course, patients with chronic diseases; however, Vohesu’s actual customers are healthcare providers. Florida has the third largest number of hospitals in the United States. These hospitals are now being reimbursed based on the value of the services they employ, not the volume of services provided. Vohesu’s technology enables healthcare providers to lower their cost of care, provide better patient care, and improve overall population health, which is the triple aim of all healthcare providers. The value of Vohesu’s Chronic Disease PAL also lies in its availability and evolution.
“The reality is that we see 80% of the questions over and over again,” explains Ken. “It’s that 20% that is unique. As new questions are identified, we research the answers and get the answers into the system.” This means that once a single question, asked by a single patient, has been answered, it is available to all patients and all healthcare subscribers.
“It’s a system that gets smarter, faster, over time. It saves the patient from the frustration of being on the phone, waiting for an answer—and it saves the healthcare provider’s staff from being pulled away from in-office patients.”
Vohesu also offers training to healthcare providers who are looking to innovate with voice-activation technology.
“A good voice user interface (VUI) is very similar to a good conversation with a friend,” Ken has written. “We have to stop programming solutions and start writing good conversations or scripts. The ‘potential’ of voice solutions is that you can build ‘conversational content,’ and with it, you can discover the true job to be done or the intent behind your customer’s initial question.”
Vohesu understands both the power of voice technology and the power of empathy, in developing voice-based solutions. The applications of voice are as limitless as they are untapped, and Vohesu is here to assist healthcare providers and patients achieve improved results with the use of this new technology.