Bupa’s SME customers will be offered access to the Babylon app to enable their employees to contact a doctor within minutes, directly from any phone or computer.
The new service will be available to all Bupa new SME customers or existing customers at their policy renewal date from the 1st January 2019.
The news of access to online GP services comes as new fugues reveal that one in 10 patients are waiting three weeks to see their GP and more than a million people had to wait four weeks .
The launch comes as Bupa and Babylon, digital healthcare provider extend their partnership to provide a range of AI-powered health services to employees of Bupa’s SME healthcare clients. New and renewing customers, along with their families will get around-the-clock health advice as part of their Bupa policy.
Bupa customers can of course continue to access their local NHS GP. Babylon Digital Healthcare simply compliments the service they already provide, as another option for swift access to primary care.
The announcement follows the success of Bupa launching Babylon to its corporate customers in June.
Mark Allan, Commercial Director, Bupa UK Insurance, said: “Our business customers often say it’s hard to find the time to look after their health, this is even more apparent for employees or owners of a small company.
We’re always looking for ways to make access to quality healthcare easier and more convenient – extending our work with Babylon is a key part of this.
We share Babylon’s mission to make healthcare more accessible which is why it’s important we utilise the latest in digital health to help our customers lead healthy lives and offer assurance when they need it.”
Markus Noe-Nordberg, Chief Commercial Officer, Babylon, said: “At Babylon, we believe that giving people easy access to healthcare is not only the right thing to do – it makes good business sense too.
Now, thanks to our continuing partnership with Bupa, employees from smaller organisations will be able to benefit from easier, more convenient access to AI-powered health information and GP appointments, and businesses large and small can thrive, keeping staff present, productive and engaged.”
The services provided by Babylon includes:
- Call or video call a GP typically within 2 hours
- Unlimited GP Consultations available 24/7 – 365 days a year
- All insured members including employees and their families
- Access to (Artificial Intelligence-powered) Clinical Triage service
- After triage you can text questions to a clinician
- Health information available for all ages
- Prescription writing with a delivery or collection service
- Sync with wearable technology
- Open referrals via Bupa Member Services
- If a customer is happy to do so, they can use Babylon Digital Healthcare to gain a GP referral, meaning they would not have to contact their NHS GP and potentially wait for an appointment.
Babylon is available from 1 January 2019 for small businesses with employees of two or more, when they take out a new policy or renew their cover.
You can find out more about Babylon here.
You can view the Bupa press release in full here.
 Figures taken from an article published in HI Daily magazine – you can view the article here.