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Taking affordable medicine to migrants’ families around the world

Asistensi supports those who have migrated, so that they can continue caring for their loved ones back home, regardless of the distances.

Some careers run in families. For Dr Andrés González-Silén, Co-Founder and Executive Chair at Asistensi, medicine was a calling he felt from a young age:

“Since I can remember I have always dreamed of becoming a doctor like my father was. For him medicine meant connecting with and helping other human beings. That passion made me want to devote myself to serve others in the same way. I remember him saying that medicine had more to do with the art of treating and serving other human beings than with the science of curing bodies.”

As a young doctor, González-Silén found he was frequently asked by migrant friends to give advice to family members in their country of origin. And so, the idea for Asistensi was born: 

“The idea was to create an online platform offering a product that was affordable to migrants and at the same time accessible for their families back home. This product needed to be robust in terms of immediate care, but also regarding coverage for hospital care.”

González-Silén’s journey from doctor to entrepreneur answers a clear need in the migrant community. Poor health can have an impact that goes beyond the individual: supporting an unwell family member can add strain to an entire family, which in turn affects whole communities. González-Silén says that when migrants see the healthcare provisions in their new homes they want a similar standard of care for their loved ones:

“When talking about migrants and Healthcare, we need to talk about their families back home. One in 30 people in the world are migrants and the majority come from developing economies where various facilities and services vital to the basic operation of society may not be readily available. According to the World Health Organization, one in every two people in the world lack access to quality essential healthcare.”

Asistensi works by removing some of the major systemic costs from healthcare. For example, healthcare systems are designed to bring patients into clinics and hospitals - a costly and often impractical solution for many healthcare needs. González-Silén says that the model needs to be flipped around:

“In order to change the future of health, we need to go and look back into the past when doctors would visit you at home. Asistensi is different from a traditional health insurance company because we use a remote- and home-first approach.”

With apps and mobile phones becoming more widespread, the infrastructure is in place to use telemedicine for triage, carry out care within the home as a preference and arrange transport to hospitals in case of emergencies. González-Silén says the benefits of the approach are clear:

“This system results in a better cost management and user experience for our patients, significantly reducing the use of hospitals and our loss ratio.”

Asistensi has led the way with its pioneering business model, becoming the first insured tech to offer accessible health plans that include services and insurance coverage that protect users against day-to-day ailments, common illnesses and medical emergencies. The company is focused on supporting migrants who wish to continue caring for their loved ones back home from their new homes in Europe, the United States and the Middle East: Asistensi has operations in Latin America and Southeast Asia.

For González-Silén, it is about offering peace of mind to people who are living far from their families:

“We humanize Medical Care through real time on demand telemedicine. We're members can connect with one of our doctors in less than 20 seconds and make their consultations online. Basically offering a doctor in your pocket. 24/7. 365 days a year.”

Dr Andrés González-Silén may be an entrepreneur, but he is still, also, a doctor, driven to make healthcare accessible to everyone. The result is Asistensi Free, the world's first completely free global telemedicine platform, and Asistensi’s main social project:

“We are a Purpose Driven company and our vision is very clear. We wanted to help those who cannot afford to pay for any plan. Our commitment is to have success and to expand across the globe and to keep delivering against our mission to make healthcare accessible for everyone with the digital-first approach to health insurance.”

González-Silén believes that his company is in a unique position to change outcomes for people all over the world and create a better future for millions of people:

“The future is about inclusion. We want to include those who have been left behind by the healthcare system. We are leading and opening the way for what is possible.”

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