Piyush Jain: Helping Patients Pay Bills
‘So far, we have helped more than 6,000 patients raise funds from over 400,000 donors’
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ImpactGuru.com, incubated at Harvard Innovation Lab and country’s leading healthcare financing platform for patients that raises money online for medical expenses via crowdfunding, has demonstrated that technology can help overcome a major social problem in quick time in the healthcare industry.
Founders Piyush Jain, a Harvard alumni, and Khushboo Jain, a Parsons alumna, sensed a golden opportunity in helping patients raise money for their out-of-pocket hospital expenses which pivoted them towards making healthcare their main focus area. Since its incorporation in 2015, ImpactGuru.com has benefitted over 25,000 patients from over 400,000 donors. Over Rs 400 crore have been mobilised on its platform and by its strategic partners since inception.
ImpactGuru.com is a donation-based crowdfunding platform that offers global crowdfunding solutions for NGOs, social enterprises, startups and individuals. It was launched in September 2015 by Maneka Gandhi, the then Union Cabinet Minister for Women & Child Development.
“We at ImpactGuru.com help patients struggling to arrange their hospital bills to finance that money in a quick manner through crowdfunding. So far, we have helped more than 6,000 patients raise funds from over 400,000 donors. Specifically, many of these patients did not have to resort to selling homes, mortgaging jewellery, losing their savings or borrowing money from lenders at very high interest rates as they were able to crowdfund successfully on our platform,” Jain told BW Businessworld during an interaction.
Jain has been chosen as one of the winners in this year’s BW Businessworld 40 Under 40 list of extraordinary entrepreneurs.
Jain even convinced the senior management of Apollo Hospitals Group to create a transformational partnership wherein the group not only invested in the startup and led its Series A round, but also agreed to offer its healthcare financing solution to thousands of patients in their 70-plus hospitals across the country.
“Many of the surgeries wouldn’t have taken place at all if the money was not arranged which would have resulted in an unfortunate fatality for that family. Thanks to ImpactGuru.com, with the money arranged, many of the operations took place at the right time and many individuals have been able to re-join their past employers,” said Jain.
“The problem of financing hospital bills will continue to be relevant 10 years from now because India’s health insurance penetration is low. Approximately 800 million people in India do not have health insurance. And those who do have an average health insurance cover of only Rs 5 lakh. As long as the need to finance hospital bills which are not funded by insurance will be there, our platform will continue to grow rapidly,” says Jain.
With an addressable market of $3 billion, ImpactGuru is following the Shuidichou and QingsSongChou crowdfunding model current in China. It aggregates a large number of online payments to allow any individual requiring financial assistance to raise funds for medical expenses -- be it for cancer, transplant, accident, or any medical emergency.
“My mission now is to ensure that no one dies due to lack of funds for their healthcare expenses in India. We want all patients suffering from critical illnesses to raise funds successfully on ImpactGuru.com. Through our technology platform, we have been able to generate significant traction towards our goal. We feel we are just getting started and hope to mobilize over $1 billion per year for various patients in the next 5-7 years,” says Jain.