Local emergency response app Emergency 24/7 that was pitched at the first ever Emerging Ideas Pitch Night with an Android version of the app released earlier this year is targeting a penetration of two other markets, Swaziland and Zambia.
According to the project lead, Taka Chidyausiku, the team pitched their solution to medical service providers in the two countries where they received a positive response which will hopefully culminate in the introduction of their app service there before the end of the year.
This foray into other markets has been motivated by a need to expand the footprint of the app while angling for business in places where fewer obstacles to entry exist.
Currently an expanded roll-out of the Emergency 24/7 app in Zimbabwe has been stifled by a disjointed medical emergency response structure. Medical institutions, emergency response services and medical aid societies do not have an integrated service delivery process.
Ambulance services that are called to respond to accident scenes only do so if the victim is willing to pay cash for the service or is on a medical aid plan that the ambulance service recognises.
This narrows the relevance of any emergency response service or app, something that the Emergency 24/7 team has tried to address by working on partnerships with specific ambulance service providers and medical centres. In any case Chidyausiku says this workaround still excludes a large part of the market.
An ideal situation, one that exists in other countries, is the adoption of the emergency response system by medical aid societies. This however hasn’t been easily executable locally because of several constraints on the part of the medical aid societies.
One possible soultion for Emergency 24/7 would be setting up their own Ambulance service, something that Chidyausiku says is still an ambitious prospect as they have limited resources. They are however open to partnerships with any investors interested in this opportunity.