How Practo is taking doctors for a ride
This is the experience of one Endocrinologist with Practo which is being shared amongst Indian doctors.
I am Dr Lakshmi Lavanya Alapati, Consultant Endocrinologist, have returned from USA to live in India and practice endocrinology in Hyderabad, started with banner of American Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinology in Madhapur Hitech City area.
Initially Practo.com marketing urged me to take a membership in their website for marketing purpose which I did so for 6 months and later I refused to do so. I refused because they told me to pay double the amount to market my banner on the top of the list in their search for best endocrinologist in Hyderabad, I did not think that I needed to pay money extra to be on top. I felt he was doing some wrong business by keeping some ridiculous competition between colleagues and doing business among ourselves, so I refused to sign up a renewal of existing contract for extending the marketing services. I clearly Conveyed to him that I no longer am his client and I want my information to be taken out completely from the practo .com website and I do not require any kind of marketing at all through them. Since after that conversation , they continued my name in their website and and also displaying my name in general physician list and not in endocrinologist list, they changed my degrees to only MBBS. So now my patients are calling my staff to find out my degrees and my qualifications and asking if I am a general physician. I think this is wrong and despite calling them, they have not corrected this error. I am informing you all so you can understand how these marketing people jeopardize our proffession and can be a hinderance to our progress when we don't use their services any more.
Also I want to inform you all that Practo .com people have started a business of selling medications with online buy meds website , they send medications to patients homes with free delivery and a discounted price, and they take information of our own patients. the information is taken from those doctor`s practices, for whom practo has given services for the entire services such as running there consultations and there pharmacy and there electronic medical record. Thank goodness I only used practo for public marketing but not for entire website running of my clinic, due to my father`s advise. My father being a retired Indian Army Colonel, suggested me that these businesses like practo can steal our patient information and do there own business such as giving information to third party such as to apollo pharmacy or thyrocare or they may sell medicines as a wholesaler quietly on the backend. This has now become true, as Practo is selling medications to our clients, we fed them with our information of our clients.
I hope you all understand the problem, it is not just my problem, it can affect all of us. please think with cool mind about this and give me your suggestions. I have practiced in theUSA for 9 yrs and after living in the USA for 14 years , returned to India and practicing in India from last 4 years. Being fairly new in India, I need your suggestion on how to proceed.
I know that you all are with me! We all spent more time with books and patients all our life than with any thing else, our hearts beat alike.
your humble colleague,
Dr Lakshmi Lavanya Alapati,MBBS,FACP,FACE Consultant Endocrinologist American Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinologist Madhapur, Hyderabad
This first-person account clearly shows the dodgy tactics Practo is using to try to grow.
They claim that they don't allow advertising on their site, but as this doctor points out, their executives try to get doctors to pay them a fee for being listed on top in their search results . So much for the " algorithm " which they use to rank doctors !
They are now also abusing patient confidentiality by misusing the patient data they are acquiring from the EMRs and practise management websites which they sell to doctors.