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Indian patient’s treatment expense makes a strategic shift towards embedded finance access at point-of-care

Indian patient’s treatment expense makes a strategic shift towards embedded finance access at point-of-care

Posted on March 13, 2024 Updated on March 10, 2024

Indian patient expenses make a strategic shift towards embedded finance access at point-of-care with options to aid out-of-pocket health expenses. Despite the availability of medical insurance, the penetration remains meagre with only a few people being able to access the high packages. Apart from the low penetration, the current medical insurance landscape is fraught with plaguing issues like under insurance, wherein a plethora of diseases, and secondary, and elective surgeries are not covered by the same.

According to Nupur Khandelwal, co-founder, CarePay, there is disparity in accessing equitable healthcare, marked by a lack of robust financial aid. This is where the emergence of embedded finance has proven to be formidable. It redefines conventional financial models where a patient has to pay all the expenses up-front. Instead embedded finance is a robust monetary support at the point of care.

The transformation of the healthcare payment system is actively opening new avenues to address operational inefficiencies in diverse financial aspects. Striving to offer innovative healthcare-centric financial solutions, the industry is expected to grow at a CAGR of 30.4%, reaching $21.1 billion by 2029, she added.

Embedded finance has emerged as a catalyst for empowering patients, as it delivers underserved segments tailored financing options for out-of-pocket health expenses. Emphasising on delivering enhanced patient experience, fintech platforms offer an array of financing solutions at the point of care like zero-cost EMI, which are specifically curated to cater to diverse portfolios, thereby reducing the likelihood of financial onus. Dynamic fintech platforms have imbued this innovative payment solution with a completely digital process, and quick loan disbursals, making healthcare services more accessible and affordable. As a result, this also ensures necessary care is not hindered by financial constraints, Khandelwal told Pharmabiz.

Embedded finance has opened new avenues to streamline processing, like digital KYC (Know Your Customer) or client verification which is completed within minutes. Further, featuring instant credit approvals and pay-outs, embedded finance maximises operational efficiency, whilst expanding the patient base which alleviates financial burdens, she said.

The embedded finance platforms integrate Aadhar and NSDL (National Securities Depository Limited) to enhance efficiency and security, to ensure streamlined interactions within a broader digital ecosystem.

With 3 out of 4 Indians being either uninsured or underinsured, a majority of patients routinely had to pay for non-critical medical procedures from their pockets. Here fintech solutions like zero-cost loans at the point-of-care and insurance add-ons have helped in covering out-of-pocket expenses. Additionally, embedded finance has created a comprehensive system for effectively managing healthcare payments, financing, and health-related savings.

Between embedded finance and public healthcare systems, the former has indirectly contributed to alleviating strain on public healthcare facilities by enabling individuals to access private healthcare services through flexible financing options. It plays pivotal role in enhancing the overall efficiency of the collective healthcare systems-be it private or public.

We see the future of embedded finance is poised for an exponential growth trajectory. Going forward with strategic partnerships and technological advancements, embedded finance will continue to offer accessible and affordable financing solutions to diverse patients. This will pave the way for an inclusive healthcare ecosystem, stated Khandelwal.

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