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New cancer app by Indian Australian doctors changing lives in Australia

Doctors Raghav Murali-Ganesh, Nikhil Pooviah and Rahul Gokarn (left to right). Source: SBS

Dr Nikhil Pooviah and Dr Raghav Murali-Ganesh and their team are trying to make cancer treatment simpler for Australian patients.

A group of young Indian Australian doctors have developed a new platform to manage cancer treatment from your pocket.

CancerAid is a mobile based app designed to help patients navigate their medical journey by providing personalised information on their condition, managing their appointment schedule, and logging their symptoms.

The app’s founder and CEO is 29-year-old Dr Nikhil Pooviah.

He began developing the service as a start-up two years ago and told SBS that he hopes to simplify patient’s experience. “We know that patients and carers can be quite confused and anxious during their journey,” Dr Pooviah says.

THIS APP ALLOWS PATIENTS TO READ ALL THE INFORMATION AT THEIR OWN PACE

“As cancer doctors we discuss a lot of that information verbally, so the app allows patients to go home and read it and digest it at their own pace,” says Dr. Pooviah.

“We wanted to create a better solution for patients going through our department,” adds co-founder and radiation oncology registrar, Dr Raghav Murali-Ganesh.

Dr Murali-Ganesh sees an app-based program as the most convenient option as “apps are really taking over in terms of how people view content, so it’s a natural progression that even healthcare can be delivered that way as long as it’s delivered within the remits of being validated, personalised, ratified information”.

CANCERAID IS FREE AND ON iPHONE

CancerAid is also offered to patients and carers free of charge - with the bill instead being footed by cancer hospitals, research groups and private cancer specialists – however, it's only available on iPhone. 

Not all types of cancers are covered by the app; very rare ones are yet to be added to the design which currently covers 30 of the most common strains.

Cancer APP
SBS

HELPS PATIENT KEEP A TRACK OF APPOINTMENT, EXERCISE AND NUTRITION

A second component of the program meanwhile, allows patients to keep track of their doctors’ appointments and medication intake via an organiser. This function also allows them to record their experience whether it be personal or their symptoms, and will soon be extended to include a log for exercise and nutrition.

BENEFITS RURAL CANCER SUFFERERS IMMENSELY

This provides a particularly useful service for rural cancer sufferers who may not have the opportunity to visit their practitioner as often as those in metropolitan areas. Instead, the patient could electronically share their log with doctors between appointments, or record their progress in certain tasks or goals set by their doctor.

“We’re providing a unique form of telemedicine where patients can allow specialists to monitor their progress and provide care without being face to face,” says Dr Pooviah.

APP COMING UP IN OTHER LANGUAGES, SOON!

As both Dr Pooviah and Dr Murali-Ganesh are of Indian descent, they recognise the need to offer a service in languages other than English and while the app is currently only available in English, they say they are working towards being multi-lingual in 2017.