Nearly two million NHS patients in England will have access to LIVI’s digital services after the Swedish startup inked new partnerships with local GP federations.
LIVI’s app first became available to patients registered with GP practices in north west Surrey and the north west of England last year. Now, it will expand to Birmingham, Shropshire, Northamptonshire and the southeast, as well as additional surgeries in Surrey.
WHY IT MATTERS
The Northampton General Practice Alliance and the Alliance for Better Care are among the federations – which are groups of GP practices working together within a local health economy - partnering with LIVI.
Through the new collaborations, around 1.85 million patients will be able to use their app to book video consultations with a GP and access medical advice, referrals and prescriptions without having to deregister from their current practice - as opposed to the current Babylon GP at Hand offering, which is available in London and Birmingham.
THE LARGER TREND
The Swedish digital health firm, known as Kry in the Nordic markets, launched its app in France and the UK in 2018 after securing $66m (€53m) in Series B funding. Earlier this year, Juliet Bauer, former chief digital officer for NHS England, joined the startup as VP of product.
In the UK, LIVI is facing a growing online GP consultation provider market, which includes eConsult, Push Doctor and askmyGP. Patient demand for video consultations, however, seems to be lagging behind other options offered by digital systems, according to research published by askmyGP.
In addition, Babylon is another competitor to LIVI. After the recent expansion of the GP at Hand service to Birmingham, the company announced at the beginning of August a $550m (€491m) Series C round that reportedly puts it at a valuation of more than $2bn.
ON THE RECORD
Commenting on the new partnerships, Luke Buhl-Nielsen, UK country manager for LIVI, said: “LIVI’s mission is to improve access to primary care for every patient, and we do so in a way that significantly relieves pressure on GP surgeries.
“Our first partnership in North-West Surrey highlighted within the first six months the positive impact that LIVI can have - offering GPs greater workplace flexibility, decreasing attendance at A+E or Urgent Care Centres, while delivering excellent care for every patient. We’re excited to see the future impact of our new partnerships for both patients and care providers.”