Following our report earlier in the month on Telstra’s success in winning the Western Australia telehealth contract, Telstra announced the acquisition of UK based Dr Foster last week. Telstra has now announced that they are acquiring Medibank’s Anywhere Healthcare platform, further expanding its Telstra Health arm.
Since 2013 Telstra has had exclusive access to Dr Foster in Australia and supplies Dr Foster products to several health services in Australia.
Anywhere Healthcare is a middleman platform with specialists signed up to provide remote consultations and GPs signed up to use the services of those specialists. When a face-to-face consultation is considered not appropriate the GP can arrange for a remote consultation via Anywhere Healthcare. Typically, this has been used to date for patients in nursing homes.
The current Anywhere Healthcare directory lists 30 specialists covering 17 specialties and it is reported that there are 1600 GPs signed up to the service. Telstra have stated that they expect to expand the service, particularly into rural patient consultations.